Dominican Sr. Donna Markham, president and CEO of Catholic Charities USA, grew emotional talking about the harrowing stories she heard from immigrants about the life they left behind to seek refuge in the United States.
When our group of 12 teachers and pastoral workers from the Cincinnati Archdiocese traveled to a parish in Huispache, Guatemala, we became a bridge between loved ones who had not seen one another in too many years. With each encounter, the globe seemed to shrink un poquito.
Seeking Refuge - A new EU agreement calls for greater shared responsibility for rescuing migrants on the sea, but critics say it falls short on devising a common European policy. Meanwhile, Germany's Merkel tightens restrictions, and an Italian right-wing politician has said next year's European Parliament elections should be a referendum on migration.
Rome - Two Syrian families have been easing their way into life in Italy at Casa della Speranza on quiet, shaded grounds owned by the Missionary Sisters Servants of the Holy Spirit. Now in their second year at the house, the Syrians' time with the sisters has "been beautiful — like one family." But ahead is the next challenging step in resettlement: finding permanent housing and work.
• Also in this series: Controversy over migration continues to upend European politics
Italian Sr. Elisabetta Flick heads a ministry of the International Union of Superiors General that accompanies migrants after they arrive in Sicily. Amid a changing migration climate, the sisters' pastoral work involves accompanying the migrants, who face fear and hostility as they try to integrate into Italian society.
The post-Easter Scripture readings of Jesus and his followers in the boat and on the sea struck me in a new way in light of the current worldwide migration crisis.
For decades, it was considered impossible to study criminal sentencing disparities because every case is different, with distinctive context, background, history and circumstances. But that is changing, and the results are beyond troubling
Bethany House of Hospitality, a staffed house that serves as a haven for migrant women, is just one of many ways that U.S. Catholic sisters support asylum-seekers. Sisters connect them with legal aid, counseling for trauma and other resources to help them resettle in the U.S.
• All the Seeking Refuge series stories can be found here.
In the Sonoran Desert northeast of Ajo, Arizona, temperatures can soar to mid-90s in late spring and above 100 degrees Fahrenheit in the summer. This vast, arid landscape of mountain ranges, arroyos and valleys, typical throughout southern Arizona, is where undocumented migrants make a path to find better life in the United States. This is also where hundreds of unfortunate ones have taken their last breath. A number of volunteer groups regularly drop off food and water in various locations in the desert to mitigate this suffering. Recently, Global Sisters Report went on a water mission with Sr. Judy Bourg and the Tucson Samaritans.
GSR Today - Watching the news about immigrants and refugees on television and listening to it on the radio every day captures my imagination with images of suffering, but nothing compares to the virtual experience I had June 25.
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