US Catholic Faith in Real Life

Alabama to Latino immigrants: No room at the inn

By Meinrad Scherer-Emunds| Print this pagePrint | Email this pageShare
In the wake of a harsh new immigration law, the popular devotions of a small Alabama parish mirror the new fears and hardships of its members.

Houses divided: How the new immigration laws separate families

By Alejandro Escalona| Print this pagePrint | Email this pageShare
New state laws and the failure of immigration reform are taking a heavy toll on children and families.

Carlos Rodriguez has been receiving letters and brochures from colleges and universities from across the country encouraging him to apply because of his outstanding grades in an Alabama high school. He dreams of the day he can start college next year.

Unexcusable absence: How Catholic schools reach Hispanic students

By Jeff Parrott| Print this pagePrint | Email this pageShare
Catholic schools have largely failed to attract Hispanic Catholics, but some parishes have found innovative ways to draw them in.

As her Puerto Rican immigrant mother had done with her as a child growing up in Chicago, Jennifer Bonesz sent both of her daughters to Catholic schools. Athena, 14, attended from preschool through eighth grade, and Damary, 8, from preschool through third grade.

The lies are killing us: The need for immigration reform

By Msgr. Arturo Bañuelas| Print this pagePrint | Email this pageShare
Understanding that “you are my other self” will lead us to a new national vision grounded in solidarity. This is the Latino good news, says a priest from the border.

I come from the El Paso-Juárez border communities. For the past 15 years, El Paso has been ranked as the second safest city in the nation, while, just across the border, Ciudad Juárez ranks the second most dangerous city in the world. Daily in Juárez eight to 10 people are murdered, decapitated, kidnapped, tortured, or are simply disappeared.

State of fear: Arizona's immigration law

By J.D. Long-García| Print this pagePrint | Email this pageShare
Arizona's immigration crackdown both was inspired by and inspires fear.

"Panico." That's how Joel Navarette, the coordinator of the youth group at St. Agnes Church in Phoenix, describes the reaction to SB 1070, an immigration crackdown that Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer signed into law in April.

Despite opposition from the U.S. bishops, polls have shown broad local and national support of the law and desire for similar legislation in other states. 

Huddle masses: The history of our immigrant church

By Moises Sandoval| Print this pagePrint | Email this pageShare

Lady Liberty has seen many tempest tossed generations set foot upon these shores. With each new wave of immigrants, the American Catholic Church has become a harbor that gets wider and deeper by the year. 

The way of the crossing

By Father Daniel Groody, C.S.C.| Print this pagePrint | Email this pageShare
Immigrants today experience economic, social, legal, and pyschological crucifixions.

Last April I was working on a video documentary on the U.S.-Mexican border. It was Holy Week. Each day I talked with undocumented immigrants, church workers, coyote smugglers, and border patrol agents, trying to capture something of the complex and painful drama of illegal immigration.

Get off the fence and support immigration reform

By Joshua Hoyt| Print this pagePrint | Email this pageShare
Some Catholics aren't so sure about the bishops' push for comprehensive immigration reform, but this Catholic activist says it's time for the entire church to stick up for immigrants.

Sounding Boards are one person's take on a many-sided subject and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of U.S. Catholic, its editors, or the Claretians.

Fault lines

By J.D. Long-García| Print this pagePrint | Email this pageShare
The immigration debate comes home to Catholic parishes

She brought her children here from her country because she feared gangs would kill them.

“I left because of the delinquency of El Salvador. The situation there is very delicate. A mother has instincts toward her children, and, well, I saw a very dangerous future for them,” Maria Ayala says.

The Salvadoran civil war—which killed some 70,000 from 1980 to 1992, including San Salvador Archbishop Oscar Romero—spawned gang violence by groups like Mara Salvatrucha.