“When a stranger sojourns with you in your land, you shall not do him wrong. You shall treat the stranger who sojourns with you as the native among you, and you shall love him as yourself, for you were strangers in the land of Egypt: I am the Lord your God.” — Leviticus 19:33-34
“Immigrants and Refugees do not only represent a problem to be solved, but are Brothers and Sisters to be welcomed, respected and loved.”— Pope Francis, World Day on Migrants & Refugees, 2014
Message of His Holiness Pope Francis for the World Day of Migrants & Refugees entitled:
“Child Migrants, the Vulnerable and the Voiceless” January 15, 2017
Dear Brothers and Sisters,
“Whoever receives one such child in my name receives me; and whoever receives me, receives not me but him who sent me” (Mk 9:37; cf. Mt 18:5; Lk 9:48; Jn 13:20). With these words, the Evangelists remind the Christian community of Jesus’ teaching, which both inspires and challenges. This phrase traces the sure path which leads to God; it begins with the smallest and, through the grace of our Saviour, it grows into the practice of welcoming others. To be welcoming is a necessary condition for making this journey a concrete reality: God made himself one of us. In Jesus God became a child, and the openness of faith to God, which nourishes hope, is expressed in loving proximity to the smallest and the weakest. Charity, faith and hope are all actively present in the spiritual and corporal works of mercy, as we have rediscovered during the recent Extraordinary Jubilee. Read More >>>
“For I was hungry and you gave me food, I was thirsty and you gave me drink, I was a stranger and you welcomed me.” — Matthew 25:35
Information from the
US Bishops …Catholic Social Teaching on Immigration
The Catholic Church in the United States is an immigrant Church with a long history of embracing diverse newcomers and providing assistance and pastoral care to immigrants, migrants, refugees, and people on the move. Our Church has responded to Christ’s call for us to “welcome the stranger among us,” for in this encounter with the immigrant, the migrant, and the refugee in our midst, we encounter Christ.
A rich body of Church teaching, including Papal encyclicals, Bishops’ statements and pastoral letters, has consistently reinforced our moral obligation to treat the stranger as we would treat Christ himself. In the 2001 pastoral statement, Welcoming the Stranger Among Us: Unity in Diversity, the Bishops of the United States called upon the Catholic faithful to a conversion of minds and hearts, imploring us to communion and solidarity with diverse newcomers, and entreating us to find new and meaningful ways to welcome our immigrant sisters and brothers into our parishes, schools and communities. In 2003, the Bishops of the United States, together with the Bishops of Mexico, in the pastoral statement, “Strangers No Longer: Together on the Journey of Hope” / “Juntos en el Camino de la Esperanza Ya no Somos Extranjeros” acknowledged that the current immigration system is badly in need of reform and offered a comprehensive set of recommendations for changing U.S. laws and policies to bring about a more humane and just immigration system in the United States.
Also from USCCB…
- Learn about issues important to Catholics in a virtual Legislative Advocacy Issues Briefing Webinar on February 7, 2017, at 2pm ET. The webinar will help you prepare for making “in-district” visits to your representatives during the Congressional Recess week of February 20-24.
- Catholic Teaching on Immigration: Learn how the Church carries out Jesus’s command to welcome the stranger (MT 25:35).
- Catholics and Muslims: Read about Catholic-Muslim dialogue and find resources on the Islamic faith from the USCCB Committee on Ecumenical and Interreligious Affairs.
To learn more about the Church’s teaching on immigration and ways to respond, visit the USCCB website Immigration page.
Catholic Relief Services – Mission: to carry out the commitment of the Bishops of the United States to assist the poor and vulnerable overseas. We are motivated by the Gospel of Jesus Christ to cherish, preserve and uphold the sacredness and dignity of all human life, foster charity and justice, and embody Catholic social and moral teaching as we act to: PROMOTE HUMAN DEVELOPMENT by responding to major emergencies, fighting disease and poverty, and nurturing peaceful and just societies; and, SERVE CATHOLICS IN THE UNITED STATES as they live their faith in solidarity with their brothers and sisters around the world.
Loom- Woven Together – a community of refugee women living in Chicago who weave together their creativity and cultural traditions to make and sell beautiful handmade products.
Exodus World Service – Mobilizing the Christian Community to welcome refugees