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Bishop’s Call to “Fast for Families” on Wednesday, Nov. 27, 2013

The California-Pacific Annual Conference is called to a “Fast for Families” for national immigration reform by Bishop Minerva G. Carcaño who delivered the following statement at a press event today with Catholic Archbishop José H. Gomez, LA County Supervisor Mark Ridley Thomas, LA County Federation labor leader Maria Elena Durazo and others.

“On this day we call for a Fast for Immigrant Families who since 1996 have lived under the most repressive immigration laws this country has ever had. Year by year the enforcement of these immigration laws has become more and more unjust, breaking families apart, leaving children behind in suffering and anguish, mistreating workers, and violating the most basic of human and civil rights of persons.

Our present immigration laws have created a culture in this country of deep and pervasive racism against the immigrant, leading even little children to the hatred of our immigrant brothers and sisters. It will not be easy to transform the place of injustice and inhumanity that we have come to in this country, but efforts must be made and they must be made now!

In the example and spirit of Jesus the Christ, we fast for and with immigrant families in Los Angeles, in California, and all across the country, seeking God’s justice. Hatred, racism, the oppression of the poor, and the inhumane marginalization of the immigrant, while taking the hard work and much needed social contributions of our immigrant brothers and sisters, can no longer be allowed to stand in a society that professes justice and democracy. We must stand for justice on this day for our immigrant brothers and sisters or the very fabric of American justice will continue to tear till it is torn beyond repair.

We call upon the House of Representatives through its leader, Speaker John Boehner, to do the right and just thing. Mr. Boehner, open the doors of the House for public discourse and bold action that leads this country to just and humane immigration reform.

As we fast, let us pray that the House will be so courageous that it will do better, far better than the Senate, and bring forth an immigration reform bill that cuts through the lies about national security and the burden of immigrants. Immigrants are NOT a threat to our national security and they are NOT a burden. Immigrants contribute to the well-being of this country far more than we have been willing to acknowledge. May God look upon our fasting with compassion and touch the hearts of our Representatives and lead them to an immigration reform that:

Unifies families;
Provides a pathway to citizenship for all immigrants in this country;
Treats all workers, documented and undocumented, with justice.

And while we fast and pray for the right actions of our Representatives, let us also demand that President Barack Obama cease to deport not one more immigrant until immigration reform that is fair and just has been passed in this land.

So let us join our fasting to our working for just and humane immigration reform.”

Bishop Minerva G. Carcaño