With about 100 people assembled, the Diocese of San Jose and its Department for Evangelization hosted a Migration Week Prayer Service on Oct. 9 at Our Lady of Refuge Church.
In heeding the words of Saint Paul and responding to this issue, the Diocese with Bishop Patrick J. McGrath and Vicar for Evangelization, Father John Hurley CSP, led a Night of Prayer in Solidarity with DACA Youth & Families.
The Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) is an immigration policy in the United States that allows some individuals who entered the country as minors, and had either entered or remained in the country illegally, to receive a renewable two-year period of deferred action from deportation and to be eligible for a work permit. As of 2017, approximately 800,000 individuals – referred to as Dreamers after the DREAM Act bill – were enrolled in the program created by DACA. The policy was established by the Obama administration in June 2012 and rescinded by the Trump administration in September.
“Our coming together tonight is a reaffirmation of our care for immigrants. And we realize that the overwhelming majority of those who live in this valley, our state and even our nation are themselves immigrants or the children or grandchildren of immigrants. It is immoral to withhold from people today the very welcome that we ourselves and our relatives once experienced,” said the Bishop. “Pope Francis recently commented upon the Pro-Life movement, asking how anyone who favors life could, at the very same time, oppose DACA. Encouraging President Trump along these lines, the Pope said: ‘If he is a good pro-life believer he must understand that family is the cradle of life and one must defend its unity.’
Bishop McGrath added, “We have been called by the Pope to ‘Share the Journey,’ as pilgrims, brothers, sisters and friends. And we will do so. My friends, our message tonight is simple and clear: ‘We are with you.’ We will work together for you; we will pray for you; we will always welcome you as the members of our family that you are. May God watch over and keep you and your families always in his love and care.”