• Corporate Stance
  • Advocacy
  • Awareness
  • Action
  • Prayer
  • Resources

Immigration

During this time when anti-immigrant sentiments, misinformation and hatred are finding a way into laws, policies and ways of dealing with immigrants, we, Holy Spirit Missionary Sisters, believe it is especially urgent that we stand with immigrants and with those who share our passion for justice for immigrants.


In 2010, the Holy Spirit Missionary Sisters issued the following declaration:

We, the Holy Spirit Missionary Sisters, in collaboration with dedicated laity and clergy, strive to live and proclaim the Gospel of God's love, justice and peace by reverencing the dignity of each person and creating a spirit of hospitality. With the strength of the Holy Spirit, we stand in solidarity with immigrants, refugees and displaced persons of diverse cultures and traditions and minister as well as journey together with them.

 

Rationale

The Holy Spirit Missionary Sisters have been sent to immigrants from the very beginning. The first Sisters from our Motherhouse in Steyl were sent to an immigrant community in Argentina.

We recognize that "the dignity and intrinsic value of the human person is more important than any material help we can give... In our efforts to combat hunger, ignorance and the denial of human rights, we follow Catholic social teaching and the directives of the local church." (Constitutions)

We are "to journey in the direction of valuing life and, networking with others, to responsibly protect and promote life in all its forms." (Congregational Directions - 2008)

In January, 2003, the U.S. Bishops issued the pastoral letter, Strangers No Longer: Together on the Journey of Hope. In that document, the U.S. Bishops articulated five principles that govern how the Church responds to public policy proposals relating to immigration.

Advocacy

Awareness

Learn about:

  • Current immigration issues and realities Immigrants face

  • How our faith approaches immigration

Know:

  • The rights of immigrants

  • Laws (local, state and federal)

  • How immigration is linked with social justice and the Gospel

How should I educate myself and others:

  • Personal contact—listen to life experiences from an immigrant’s perspective

  • Watch documentaries about immigration (see Resources)

  • Read articles discussing immigration issues (lives of others) — not just about policies

  • Attend discussions, webinars and presentations (see Events)

  • Learn a new language—learn about other cultures

Action

  • Identify with immigrants

  • Overcome the “other” mentality of hatred and indifference:
    Respect and Kindness—welcoming attitude

  • Become aware of language/correct and proper use of it
    Ex: use of “undocumented person” instead of “illegal alien”

  • Be mindful of how we speak about immigrants

  • Invite your Church/Parish to become an Immigrant Welcoming Congregation

  • Host or plan an event with neighboring parishes, such as “Christians and Immigration Today”

  • Participate in the prayer vigil at Broadview Detention Center on Fridays

  • Serve the immigrant community – Service projects might include helping out in the field of education, working a Hotline, etc.

  • Continue our work with the SVD-SSpS-SSpSAP Immigration Team
    (Joint Immigration Venture)

  • Change personal attitudes

Prayer

Our commitment as Holy Spirit Missionary Sisters:

  • Pray for immigrants and have others become aware of immigrants' situations

  • Hold prayer services/Holy Hours for Comprehensive Immigration Reform

  • Say petitions during Liturgy

  • Keep immigrants and immigration concerns in our prayers in order to transform us, the system and the world

  • Pray for our ministries with immigrants

 

Resources