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  1. #1
    Senior Member Brian503a's Avatar
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    Is the Catholic Church pro-illegal immigrant? You bet.

    http://www.usatoday.com

    Is the Catholic Church pro-immigrant? You bet.
    Updated 8/20/2006 7:45 PM ET
    By Paulette Chu Miniter
    The Catholic Church — an unrelenting opponent of abortion and homosexuality and troubled by its own priest-abuse scandals — has been called many things, but fashionable isn't often among them. Yet fashion is why some critics now speculate the church has involved itself in today's third rail of politics: immigration reform. The chorus has been steady and building. A sampling:

    TIMELINE:Immigration, Catholicism and America

    •Rep. Pete King, R-N.Y., a Roman Catholic and chairman of the House of Representatives' Homeland Security Committee, told Fox's Bill O'Reilly earlier this year, "This has become the politically correct tune. ... Too many people in the Catholic Church have signed onto this. It's fashionable."

    •Rep. Tom Tancredo, R-Colo., a leading opponent of illegal immigration, has blamed the church's stance on "left-leaning religious activists."

    •CNN's Lou Dobbs has accused the church of avidly looking south of the border just "to add a few folks to those pews."

    Where does the church stand on the current debate? While the Vatican has articulated a broad vision of immigration through the years, it has largely deferred to the bishops' conferences in each country on specific public policy efforts. In the USA, the church favors the Senate's more moderate legislation over the House's heavy-handed enforcement-only approach. Both bills are stalled, but immigration is expected to be a prominent issue once Congress returns from its summer recess.

    History tells the story

    A snapshot of today's immigrants quickly reveals their significance to the church: 42% of all legal immigrants to the USA are Catholic. And by 2020, the church projects that more than half of its members will have Spanish surnames.

    While Tancredo Republicans and Dobbs protectionists speculate that the church wants immigration reform simply because it is fashionable politics or is a way to put more people in the pews, there is a much larger and longer standing Catholic case for migration. The U.S. Catholic Church was founded by and for immigrants, and it sees today's nativist grumblings as the same that confronted the American church in its earliest years.

    "We are relearning what it means to be an immigrant church," says Mark Franken, head of migration and refugee services for the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB). "There are just a lot of people unaware of both the theological dimension for migration, and also our history in this country."

    Brought to America by Spanish and French explorers, Catholicism accounted for 1% of the population in the 13 colonies in 1776, according to the Archdiocese of St. Louis. By the end of the 19th century, the Catholic population had swelled, and anti-immigrant sentiment had emerged as Irish and other newcomers had dramatically changed the church's face. In 1920, three of four U.S. Catholics were immigrants, and it is for these immigrants that the church created its vast network of schools, charities and hospitals.

    Today, the Catholic Church is America's largest with 69 million members, roughly four times the size of the second-largest, the Southern Baptist Convention. It credits the vast majority of its growth in the USA over the past four decades to this nation's ever-increasing Hispanic population.

    For the church, the migrant's plight is a universal one tracing back to the Holy Family. Pope Pius XII, in 1952, declared the Holy Family of Jesus, Mary and Joseph to be the archetype of every refugee family. He based this on their flight into Egypt, calling them "the models and protectors of every migrant, alien and refugee of whatever kind who, whether compelled by fear of persecution or by want, is forced to leave his native land, his beloved parents and relatives, his close friends, and to seek a foreign soil."

    The church has emphasized the duty of Christians to "welcome the stranger," citing the commandment in the book of Leviticus that "you shall treat the stranger no differently than the natives born among you." The church also points to Jesus' description of the final judgment, when those who welcomed him in the form of a stranger inherit the kingdom of heaven.

    "The biblical tradition puts the migrant and exile at the very center of concern. Therefore, we, as believers and followers of Jesus, can do no less," the USCCB's Franken told a Lutheran gathering in 2004.

    Even the church's language is rooted in migration. The word "parishioner," for instance, is related to the Greek word paroikos, which means "wayfarer" or "sojourner." A parish, then, is a community of migrants, and migration itself is a metaphor for humanity, as all people pass through life on the way to their final destination back to God.

    Consistent advocacy

    The bishops' call for "just and humane" immigration reform is no different from what the church's leaders have advocated: from Pope John XXIII — who said, "Every human being has the right to freedom of movement" — to Pope John Paul II, who in an annual message for World Migration Day in 1995 said, "The illegal migrant comes before us like that 'stranger' in whom Jesus asks to be recognized," and Catholics must help these strangers "whatever their legal status with regard to state law."

    If the Catholic Church has wound up on the politically correct side of today's debate, it certainly took a more principled and traditional route than its skeptics avow.

    Paulette Chu Miniter lives in New York and is a fellow at the Phillips Foundation, a non-profit public affairs organization.
    Support our FIGHT AGAINST illegal immigration & Amnesty by joining our E-mail Alerts at http://eepurl.com/cktGTn

  2. #2
    Senior Member Brian503a's Avatar
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    http://www.usatoday.com

    Immigration, Catholicism and America
    Posted 8/20/2006 7:42 PM ET
    A look at the relationship between immigration and Catholicism in the United States:

    1600s: In original English colonies, Roman Catholics are persecuted for their beliefs.

    1632: King Charles I issues a charter to Cecilius Calvert, baron of Baltimore, to settle Maryland. Calvert encourages religious toleration for all Christians, permitting Catholics to practice freely.

    1704: Anti-Catholic legislation is enacted in Maryland with the aim of restricting the work of Jesuits.

    1776: Catholics make up only 1% of the colonial population.

    1820-1920: 4.3 million largely Irish Catholic immigrants settle in the USA. More than 1.5 million German Catholics immigrate to the country.

    1832: U.S. Congress chooses Catholic priest as its chaplain.

    1845: Irish immigration surges amid Ireland's potato blight.

    1880-1920: Millions of Italians — nearly all Catholic — immigrate to the USA.

    1880-1930: More than 2 million Polish immigrants, the majority Catholic, enter the USA.

    1906: Catholics, 17% of the U.S. population, are the country's largest religious denomination.

    1910: Start of Mexican Revolution prompts more than 680,000 Mexicans to enter the USA over decades.

    1928: Alfred E. Smith becomes the first Catholic presidential candidate.

    1940-60: More than 545,000 Puerto Ricans move to the U.S. mainland.

    1952: Pope Pius XII issues Exsul Familia (Families in Exile), the "Magna Carta for Migrants." In it, the pope says: "The émigré Holy Family of Nazareth, fleeing into Egypt, is the archetype of every refugee family."

    1960: John F. Kennedy is elected as the first Catholic U.S. president.

    1970s: Hispanics from war-torn Central American nations seek haven in the USA. Exodus continues into the '90s.

    1972: U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) sponsors the IEncuentro Nacional Hispano de Pastoral, a nationwide gathering designed to help Hispanics share ideas to help their communities.

    1999: USCCB reports that since 1960, the Catholic Church has grown by 71%, largely because of Hispanic influx.

    2003: Census reports Hispanic Americans have overtaken African-Americans as the nation's largest minority community.

    2005: U.S. bishops launch national campaign to expand and strengthen immigrant rights.

    2006: The Catholic Church lends a voice to the immigration debate. Priests and parishioners advocate legalization for illegal immigrants. Catholics make up 23% of U.S. population, according to USCCB.
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  3. #3
    Administrator Jean's Avatar
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    I only scanned both articles because I didn't feel like I needed to read every word. Of course the Catholic church backs illegals. Most are Catholic and that church has had some problems, needless to say. Of course they want more members. Duh! Simple as that. More members, more money. Money money money.
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  4. #4
    Senior Member Richard's Avatar
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    Ditto to that Jean.
    I support enforcement and see its lack as bad for the 3rd World as well. Remittances are now mostly spent on consumption not production assets. Join our efforts to Secure America's Borders and End Illegal Immigration by Joining ALIPAC's E-Mail Alerts network (CLICK HERE)

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    Re: Is the Catholic Church pro-illegal immigrant? You bet.

    Quote Originally Posted by Brian503a
    [url=http://www.[b]Is the Catholic Church pro-immigrant? You bet. [/b]
    Definitely! And, they want to increase their congregation #'s! Don't have time right now for a more lengthy response, but I have no respect or compassion for the Catholic church, and throughout history, they have been VERY unkind to those who practice other religions and very intolerant too of views that differ from their views. Plus, then there are the scandals.
    People who take issue with control of population do not understand that if it is not done in a graceful way, nature will do it in a brutal fashion - Henry Kendall

    End foreign aid until America fixes it's own poverty first - me

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    Senior Member steelerbabe's Avatar
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    My husband went to mass yesterday and they were collecting for missions overseas and mentioned the case in Chicago as an injustice He promptly got up and left along with about 20 other people. He came home fit to be tied.

  7. #7
    Administrator Jean's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by steelerbabe
    My husband went to mass yesterday and they were collecting for missions overseas and mentioned the case in Chicago as an injustice He promptly got up and left along with about 20 other people. He came home fit to be tied.
    Well good for your husband and the other 20. Awesome!
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  8. #8
    Senior Member AlturaCt's Avatar
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    Ditto to that Jean.
    Double Ditto!

    He came home fit to be tied.
    I hope he is mad as hell. I hope everyone else is too. I am firmly convinced now more then ever that only passion and true conviction will get this changed. We can not afford to be nice.

    Let's also not pick exclusively on Catholics. They may be leading the pack but they are not alone here. More than a few churches and denominations are kowtowing and catering to this crap. How many peoples churches, synagogues or religious institutions are preaching this now? Globalist perspective? Multiculturalism? etc I'm not talking about missionary type work either. I'm talking about the whole mindset. We've given up many of our institutions to this way of thought. I can name and number quite a few around where I live. They are following the money. I not blaming them all but know first hand. I've seen it happen around here gradually over the last 20 years or so.
    [b]Civilizations die from suicide, not by murder.
    - Arnold J. Toynbee

  9. #9
    Senior Member steelerbabe's Avatar
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    I think I have enough anger for both if us He has been content to let me do all the writing and voicing of displeasure. Can't tell you how many times he has said to me, "enough already, there is nothing I can do" Then he gets me lecture about that attitude is destroying our country and how everybody can do their part.

  10. #10
    Senior Member CountFloyd's Avatar
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    Is the Catholic Church pro-(illegal) immigrant?
    Is the Pope Catholic?

    However, we can't just blame the Catholic Church. All the Christian churches have joined in to aid and abet the illegals.

    Personally, I'd like to see them all lose their tax-free status, since they've chosen to become political organiizations rather than religious ones.
    It's like hell vomited and the Bush administration appeared.

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