The Massachusetts Catholic Conference, which represents the Catholic bishops of Massachusetts, issued a statement today on comprehensive immigration reform. Specifically they voiced their support for the version which passed the U.S. Senate on June 27, 2013 and encouraged a similar bill be passed in the US House of Representatives. In their statement, the bishops noted that the moral content we face today as we seek comprehensive immigration reform, is about “the God-given dignity of each person."
The statement cites the words of Archbishop Jose Gomez of Los Angeles who said "we witness the human consequences of a broken immigration system. Families are separated, migrant workers are exploited, and our fellow human beings die in the desert. . . The status quo is morally unacceptable. The suffering must end."
The bishops highlighted three concerns in anticipation of ongoing deliberations in the House. First is the need to provide a secure path to citizenship for the 11 million undocumented persons already in this country. Second, they acknowledge the complementary objective to improve aspects of the security of the nation’s borders, which is “a legitimate concern for any country.” Third, immigration reform must be guided by the objective of family reunification. “The stability of the family, based on a man, woman, and children, is as necessary to protect children of immigrants as it is for all of the citizens of this diverse nation."
The complete statement can be read at