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The Devastating Effects of Immigration Detention

In 2013, early in his papacy, Pope Francis’s first trip outside Rome was to minister to the immigrants who were in detention on the island of Lampedusa.  There he famously decried the “culture of indifference” which allows the world to ignore the sufferings of migrants and refugees, and instead he called for a culture of… continue reading

Death While Waiting at the Border

A few days ago, we received word that the brother of a current guest of Casa Juan Diego, who had been forced to await his day in a U.S. Court in one of the refugee camps just across the border in Mexico, had been murdered. We don’t know the details yet, but a fellow migrant,… continue reading

Cultivating Hope in Troubled Times at Casa Juan Diego: Samaritans and Solidarity

  My job during the Tuesday food distributions at Casa Juan Diego is basically to organize the hundreds of people who come to the door. Most come just for food and they organize themselves, really. Before the sun comes up, they have formed a line out the door and into our parking lot and sometimes… continue reading

“You Shall Not Wrong Any Widow or Orphan”: Seeking a Better Way Than Family Separation

One of our guests sat weeping in our office as she contemplated her future. Her husband was in immigration detention and the possibilities for his release were not good. Our Honduran guest (we will call her Suyapa), eight months pregnant, had been released while her husband was sent to further detention in Georgia. Their baby… continue reading

Immersed In Border Reality: So many desperately poor displaced people all at once

Monica was a full-time Catholic Worker at Casa Juan Diego for two years. Her work now is with the Sisters of Charity of the Incarnate Word. My recent firsthand glimpse of the reality on the border was a sobering shock to me. The vast movement of vulnerable poor, including so many thousands of children, is… continue reading

Learning From the Suffering and Grit of Migrants on Their Journey

Betsy was a CatholicWorker at Casa Juan Diego for several years. She is now working as a health educator in public health at Baylor College of Medicine. I want to speak on behalf of migrants, and three lessons l learned. They showed me the power of human dignity, the audacity of hope and the journey… continue reading

The Summer of Family Separation at the Border

About ten years ago I spent the summer in Cuba. A fascinating country, but what I remember most was how heavily policed Havana was. Uniformed law enforcement seemed to be everywhere, to the point that it felt oppressive. It WAS oppressive, a police state, they say. Last summer in Texas was the summer of family… continue reading

One Way to Help Stranded Migrants in Tijuana

  Here is information on how to send funds to Cáritas Tijuana to assist the thousands of migrants in crisis there: The bank is Bancomer. Send to  Bancomer in the name of Cáritas Región Noroeste, A. C.  CARITAS TIJUANA phone number for information below. Or call Casa Juan Diego and we can give you the… continue reading

Children Detained: Immigration and Jesus’ Story of the Rich Man and the Beggar

Those of us who work closely with immigrants, who share our lives with them at Casa Juan Diego, have had to come to terms with the increasingly cruel and aggressive policies of our government towards our guests. We have gotten accustomed to it, to be honest. I am not sure this is entirely a good… continue reading

Catholic Bishops Call Forced Separation of Migrant Families Immoral

Forced separation of children and parents at the United States’ southern border, as a tool of a new, harsher immigration policy, shocks the conscience with its brutal indifference to the enduring injury it causes children and its callous neglect for human dignity.  As the count of children separated from their families has grown into the… continue reading