Join U.S. Bishops on the Border in Solidarity with Immigrants

Pope FrancisThe U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) Committee on Migration, joined by bishops on the border, will travel to Nogales, Arizona, March 30-April 1 to tour the U.S.-Mexico border and celebrate Mass on behalf of the close to 6,000 migrants who have died in the U.S. desert since 1998.

The purpose of the trip is to highlight the human suffering caused by a broken immigration system, an aspect of the national immigration debate which is often ignored.  Cardinal Sean O’Malley and the Bishops’ Committee on Migration will spend time with migrants served at the Kino Border Initiative‘s Care Center for Deported Migrants in Mexico before crossing back over to Nogales, Arizona on April 1, 2014 to hold a Mass of Repentance at 9 AM PT / 12 PM ET.

The trip follows the example of Pope Francis, who, in his first trip outside of Rome, traveled to the Italian island of Lampedusa to remember African migrants who died attempting to reach Europe. During that trip, Pope Francis spoke about the “globalization of indifference” toward migrants and decried the “throwaway culture” that disposes of human beings in the pursuit of wealth.


  • Mass or Prayer Service

    Offer a Mass or Prayer Service for your community to gather in solidarity with the Bishops on April 1st.  If you are able, schedule your mass or prayer service at 12 PM ET / 9 AM PT to coincide with the exact time the Bishops will celebrate Mass on the border OR intention an already scheduled mass for immigrants & immigration reform.  Resources for prayer and masses can be found at the Archdiocese of Chicago Immigrant Affairs Office website.

  • Public Prayer or Rally for Immigrants

    Join the Bishops prophetic stance for social justice by hosting a Public Rally on April 1st to call for humane immigration reform and an end to unjust deportation policies.  Ideas include: Inviting a DREAMer or other person close to the immigration issue to speak, praying for those who have died crossing the border (you can find a listing of names of individuals via Coalición de Derechos Humanos), a wreath laying at a prominent spot in your community (to mirror what Pope Francis did in Lampedusa), or calling on our Congress to act for humane immigration reform.

  • Spread the Word Via Social Media

    Invite  your network to join in this solidarity effort by taking part in a “Thunderclap” (crowd-speaking platform that helps people be heard via social media).  Your friends, colleagues, peers, etc. can join in this effort!  Our voice for humane immigration reform can be heard by tens of thousands of people if you work together.  JOIN THE THUNDERCLAP via Twitter, Facebook or Tumblr today!

To help us build the movement and share what is happening across the country, please let us know what is being planned at your parish, campus, etc.  We promise to tweet, post, etc. to share your great efforts for humane immigration reform!

“What we fail to remember in this debate is the human aspect of immigration ­– that immigration is primarily about human beings, not economic or social issues.  Those who have died – and those deported each day – have the same value and innate God-given dignity as all persons, yet we ignore their suffering and their deaths.”

-Bishop Eusebio Elizondo
Auxiliary bishop of Seattle & Chairman of USCCB Committee on Migration

Bishop Eusebio Elizondo