BY ISN STAFF | July 18, 2019 | en español
WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today inside the Russell Senate Office Building Rotunda, 70 Catholic leaders locked arms in an act of nonviolent civil disobedience, in an effort to put pressure on Congress and the presidential administration to end the immoral and inhumane practice of detaining immigrant children.The Catholic Day of Action for Immigrant Children, co-sponsored in part by the Ignatian Solidarity Network and the Jesuit Conference Office of Justice and Ecology, brought together more than 300 Catholic sisters, priests, brothers and lay Catholic advocates representing nearly 20 national organizations, who sang, prayed, and chanted as they demanded an end to the immoral and inhumane practice of detaining immigrant children. “It was heartening to see the significant presence of the Ignatian network today—the presence of Jesuits and lay leaders, standing up for the inherent dignity of immigrant children,” said Christopher Kerr, Ignatian Solidarity Network executive director. “The images of the children who have died in U.S. immigration custody was a powerful and moving reminder of their lives, and of their moms, dads, and other family members who continue to mourn their loss—moving us to take action on behalf of those seeking asylum at our border.” William Critchley-Menor, S.J., a Jesuit scholastic from the Midwest province, was among those arrested. “We’re here because the treatment [children being detained] are receiving is completely incompatible and contrary to the message of Jesus Christ and the Catholic Church,” he said prior to the morning’s prayer service and rally.
#Jesuit William Critchley-Menor, S.J., is arrested at the #CatholicDayofAction for #Immigrant children at the US Capitol. Over 70 have been arrested—including priests, nuns, and lay leaders. #EndChildDetention#Catholics4Migrants @JamesMartinSJ @ThomasReeseSJ pic.twitter.com/GOgpJX4Ni6
— Ignatian Solidarity (@IGsolidarityNET) July 18, 2019
Representatives from numerous Jesuit network organizations and institutions were present, including from ISN, the Jesuit Conference of Canada and the United States/Office of Justice and Ecology, the Association of Jesuit Colleges and Universities, Xavier College Preparatory in Palm Desert, CA, Jesuit Refugee Service/USA, Kalmanovitz Initiative for Labor and the Working Poor at Georgetown University, and Saint Joseph’s University.Endorsing Jesuit network organizations and institutions included: Kino Border Initiative, Boston College Center for Human Rights and International Justice, The Center for Undocumented Students at Saint Peter’s University, Marquette University Center for Peacemaking, Fairfield Jesuit Community, Brebeuf Jesuit Preparatory School, Jesuit Refugee Service/Canada, Jesuits of the U.S. Central and Southern Province, Immaculate Conception Church – Albuquerque, NM, St. Mary Student Parish – Ann Arbor, MI, Jesuit Social Research Institute at Loyola University New Orleans, Gesu Parish (Milwaukee, WI), Schlegel Center for Service and Justice at Creighton University, Jesuits of the USA Midwest Province, Detroit Jesuit Community, The Encuentro Project, Joan and Ralph Lane Center for Catholic Social Thought and the Ignatian Tradition at the University of San Francisco, Center for Community Service & Justice at Loyola University Maryland, Jesuits of the Maryland Province, Marquette University Office of Mission & Ministry, Center for the Human Rights of Children at Loyola University Chicago School of Law, Marquette University High School, Jesuits of the U.S. West Coast Province , Fairfield University Center for Faith & Public Life, St. Agnes Church (San Francisco, CA), Social Justice Program at Saint Peter’s University, and St. Ignatius Parish (San Francisco, CA), Sacred Heart Parish, (Richomond, VA); and the Masters in Migration Studies at University of San Francisco.
Watch the recorded livestream from the Russel Senate Office Buiding Rotunda via Faith in Public Life: