PRESS RELEASE: Catholic Faith Leaders Speak in Support of Refugees

March 6, 2017
Contact: Janine Walsh
FAN Communications Coordinator
(203) 685-1856 (cell)
walsh@franciscanaction.org

Catholic Faith Leaders Speak in Support of Refugees

Solidarity continues as Trump Administration releases new Executive Order banning immigrants from Muslim Majority Countries

Washington, D.C. - Today representatives from national Catholic religious orders and advocacy organizations responded to the new executive order issued by the Trump administration. Defending Catholic values and recalling scripture passages and Pope Francis, these leaders expressed overall opposition to this new immigration executive order. 

“The ban goes against everything that we stand for as Franciscan Catholic Christians, and against the lessons Jesus and Francis of Assisi taught and lived. St. Bonaventure tells us that how we choose and what we choose makes a difference – first in what we become by our choices and second what the world becomes by our choices. Pope Francis recently stated, ‘It’s hypocrisy to call yourself a Christian and chase away a refugee or someone seeking help.’” Patrick Carolan, Executive Director of the Franciscan Action Network

“A ban regarding human beings, because they are from a certain country or practice a particular religion is clearly xenophobic, nationalistic and racist. This executive action by the president creates division and perpetuates hate. No human being deserves this kind of treatment. Now is the time to honor the commitment for justice expressed in all faith communities and to proclaim this commitment with actions that uphold the rights of all people." Sr. Patricia Chappell, SNDdeN, Executive Director of Pax Christi USA

"We must always remember that we are a nation of immigrants and refugees and we are called to stand in solidarity with them. Columbans have always welcomed migrants and refugees, we do so every day at the US--Mexico border. As people of faith, we are called to both address the root causes of migration and seek policies of welcome toward our migrant sisters and brothers. We stand against any policies that seek to build a wall, inhumanely detain and deport women and families, or limit migration based solely on a person’s country of origin or religion.” Scott Wright, Director of the Columban Center for Advocacy and Outreach

“It is completely unjust to punish an entire country due to the suspicion of a potential crime by an individual. We should be asking about the root causes of violent acts, such as U.S. militarization of conflicts, and giving our attention to addressing those concrete situations." Eli McCarthy, Director of Justice and Peace, CMSM

“The Leadership Conference of Women Religious (LCWR) is deeply concerned about the administration’s executive order on immigration and refugee resettlement. This nation has a long history of welcoming immigrants and sheltering refugees. Women religious have been blessed to be able to accompany and serve immigrant and refugee communities across this country for a very long time. Catholic sisters remain committed to welcoming those who come to this country after passing through the U.S. government’s already rigorous screening processes.” Sr. Joan Marie Steadman, CSC, Executive Director of, Leadership Conference of Women Religious

"Mr. President, why close our borders to those fleeing real atrocities, fleeing the ravages of war and the search for food, clean water and safety? This is not what America stands for and not who we are called to be. America is not a country that retreats and Americans choose to not live in fear of the ‘what if.’ Mr. President, welcome the refugee and welcome the face of God.” Larry Couch, Director of the National Advocacy Center of the Sisters of the Good Shepherd

"For I was hungry and you gave me food, I was thirsty and you gave me drink, a stranger and you welcomed me, naked and you clothed me, ill and you cared for me, in prison and you visited me…” Matthew 25: 35-40

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