"We recognize that every human being, authorized or not, is an image of God and therefore possesses infinite value and dignity," the letter stated.
The bishops expressed their concern for the difficulties being experienced by immigrants due to the economic downturn. In some cases people have even blamed them for the problems, the bishops noted.
"In your suffering faces we see the true face of Jesus Christ." The letter called for greater solidarity between all workers and all who live in the United States.
The bishops explained how the Catholic Church has testified before Congress calling for changes to immigration laws. Among the points they raised was the need for the law to respect family unity and to enable illegal immigrants to regularize their situation.
"Immigrants are a revitalizing force for our country," the letter declared. "The lack of a just, humane and effective reform of immigration laws negatively affects the common good of the entire United States."
The bishops promised they would continue to press for changes to the law and lamented the fact that many Catholics have not supported their efforts on this matter.
The letter went on to say that they are not going to wait for the law to change to say that illegal immigrants are welcome in churches. The bishops offered them spiritual nourishment through the sacraments and the promise to help their children through religious education programs.
Jesus migrated from heaven to earth, the bishops noted, and on earth he migrated to Egypt, then to Galilee and then to Jerusalem to die on the cross. "Today, he continues to journey and to accompany all migrants on pilgrimage throughout the world in search of food, work, dignity, security and opportunities for the welfare of their families."
--- --- ---
On the Net:
Join the new media evangelization. Your tax-deductible gift allows Catholic.net to build a culture of life in our nation and throughout the world. Please help us promote the Church's new evangelization by donating to Catholic.net right now. God bless you for your generosity.
|Print Article||Email Friend||Palm Download||Forums||Questions||More in this Channel||Up|
Write a comment on this article|