Speaking Truth to Power

By Br. Joseph Nangle, OFM, former FAN board member and one of the original founders of our organization. He joined us in Newark, NJ for the recent Catholic Action for Immigrant Children. This is his reflection of the day.

Br. Joseph Nangle, OFM

In the past six weeks, large groups of Catholics have gathered in two very public places to protest our government’s treatment of immigrant families, particularly children, on our southern borders. Each venue was consciously chosen: the Russel Senate Office Building in Washington and the Federal Building in Newark, New Jersey.

The U.S. Senate was selected to underscore our legislators’ total failure to enact a just immigration policy for our country and Newark because it houses one of the federal Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) offices.

The reasons for these public protests are well known. Due to a draconian immigration policy known as “zero tolerance,” instituted in 2018, every adult crossing the border into our country without proper documentation is subject to detention and deportation; meanwhile, children are separated from their parents and held in other facilities. In May and June of this year, some 2000 children have been held in horrendous conditions – some even in cages – for weeks and now months beyond the 1997 (Flores) regulation that obliges immigrant agents to free children from detention after 72 hours!

Biblical Mandates
Quite appropriately, this stain on our government’s soul has aroused the indignation of most Americans, including, of course, the Catholic groups mentioned above. Our actions at these two venues were vivid examples of the Gospel mandate to “speak truth to power” both as American citizens and as followers of Jesus.

Marie Dennis, OFS, and Pat Sieber at the protest in Newark. (Photo courtesy of Octavio Duran)

The archbishop of Newark, Cardinal Joseph Tobin, affirmed the validity, and indeed the necessity, for such public actions when on the streets of his city he cited… READ MORE

Published in: on September 12, 2019 at 10:44 am  Leave a Comment  

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