St John's Q&A

Friday, April 07, 2006

Bishops' statements on immigration

A SFA blogger recently inquired about the statements of the US Catholic bishops on the issue of immigration. Here are some excerpts from a USCCB (United States Conference of Catholic Bishops) Chairman and our Archbishop, Cardinal McCarrick:

"The bishops do support a number of provisions in the Senate Judiciary committee-approved version of CIRA. Title VI would increase our national security by bringing a large number of the approximately 11 million undocumented aliens currently residing in the United States out of the shadows, subjecting them to security and health checks, and providing those who meet the measure’s stringent requirements a path to permanent residency. Contrary to the claims of opponents, the “earned adjustment” program contained in Title VI of CIRA is not an “amnesty” or “giveaway”. Instead, it would provide an opportunity for hard-working immigrants to earn their legal status over time...

The bishops also support provisions in Title IV and V, which would establish a temporary worker program to permit future flows of workers through legal means (Title IV) and would reorder the family- and employment-based immigration preference systems (Title V). Together, these provisions would adjust our immigration policies so as to both better meet the demand for immigrants and nonimmigrants and to help reunite separated families. These changes, in turn, will reduce incentives for people to come to the United States illegally...

While there is much to support in the Senate Judiciary Committee-reported version of CIRA, the bishops are deeply opposed to several provisions in Title II that would deprive immigrants of due process and even harm immigrants who are currently in the United States legally. We believe that as good as many of CIRA’s provisions are, a number of the provisions in Title II are harmful and should be either stricken or ameliorated during Senate floor consideration of the measure...

Ultimately, the U.S. Catholic Bishops support a comprehensive approach to immigration reform that would improve the U.S. immigration system so that it is humane, secure, and reflects the values upon which our nation - a nation of immigrants - was built. We are pleased that the Senate Judiciary Committee reported a comprehensive measure rather than a measure that addressed only one aspect of our immigration problems. This is a good start but the full Senate needs to do more to make it a measure worthy of our nation’s tradition as a welcoming nation...

Most Reverend Gerald R. Barnes
Bishop of San Bernardino
Chairman, USCCB Committee on Migration
April 3, 2006
“The compromise agreed to by the U.S. Senate today is an important step toward reaching an agreement on comprehensive immigration reform legislation. I urge President Bush and the House and Senate leadership to give assurances that the provisions in the compromise, which would assist 12 million undocumented to obtain legal status and eventual citizenship, are retained both on the Senate floor and in the conference committee.

“I also urge legislators to ameliorate or remove harsh enforcement provisions in Title II of the compromise, which would preclude certain undocumented persons from participating in the legalization program, as well as other overly punitive provisions within Title II.

“This is an important time for the future of our nation. I pray that all sides work together to fashion a final bill which creates an immigration system which is secure, humane and respectful of our tradition as a nation of immigrants.”

Cardinal McCarrick
April 6, 2006


Post a Comment

<< Home

Free Web Site Counter
Free Web Counter