“Does our faith call us to build bridges or walls? Who do we call neighbor?” These challenging questions were the basis of a community reflection at a recent Peace Prayer hosted by the Justice Office of the Sisters of St. Joseph of Carondelet (CSJs) in St. Paul, Minnesota (www.csjstpaul.org).

In the moving testimony of a local Twin Cities DACA youth we learned about lives lived with uncertainty and fear. With the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program ending on March 5, 2018, the lives of DACA youth and their families hang in the balance.  The price for these youth is high. The price to our nation is beyond measure.

Most polls indicate that 87% or more of Americans, across political lines and faith traditions, strongly support allowing young immigrants who entered the U.S. without papers as children to stay in the only country they call home. Yet, walls of divisiveness and legislation are increasingly appearing where once there were bridges.

What does our treatment of DACA youth bode for our future? Next we consider restricted access, denial of Temporary Protection Status, millions spent on walls, security and armaments. In our effort to feed an unbridled and seemingly unquenchable fear do we risk becoming the very thing we hope to insulate ourselves from?

Throughout history CSJs have stood in solidarity with those suffering and on the margins of society. Today, this work focuses on our Dear DACA Neighbors. If you are one of the 9 out of 10 Americans who believe these youth should be supported we invite you to:

  1. Pray with us for DACA Youth, our Congressional representatives and our Nation
  2. Contact your Congressional representative requesting support of DACA youth legislation.
  3. Practice inclusivity and action with and on behalf of DACA youth in our community.

In this Lenten Season, may we reflect, share, and raise our voices with prophetic clarity. Pope Francis knows that immigrants “enrich the lives of the nations that receive them” and calls us to “recognize that all of us belong to one family – migrants and the local populations that welcome them.” (2018 World Day of Peace Message.)

Join us in urgently raising our voices in support of our Dear DACA Neighbors.

More Resources

The moving testimony of a local Twin Cities DACA youth.

Song: If Christ is Lord of All (Does our faith build bridges or does it put up walls)

Prayers for DACA

February 14th, 2018