This year’s Lenten Social Justice project intended to humanize the immigration issue impacting millions of people in our world today by. recognizing its complexity and emphasizing accompaniment of people on their journey.
Respecting the human dignity of every individual is the first and foremost Catholic social teaching. The seven main teachings include: Respecting Human Dignity; Call to Family, Community, and Participation; Rights and Responsibilities; Option for the Poor and Vulnerable; The Dignity of Work and the Rights of Workers; and living in Solidarity with our brothers and sisters everywhere.
Two key initiatives were the main focus over the 6-week Lenten period. The two initiatives are:
Kino Border Initiative (KBI) promotes U.S./Mexico border and immigration policies that affirm the dignity of the human person and a spirit of bi-national solidarity through direct assistance and education. Every year, thousands of migrant men, women and children are deported to Nogales, Sonora, Mexico or arrive in the city fleeing from Central America. They often arrive with only the clothes on their backs and a small plastic bag that contains their belongings. They often do not know where to turn to receive a meal, find shelter and to make a phone call. They also arrive emotionally and psychologically devastated, due to separation from their family members or the inability to work legally in the United States.
The Holy Family Fund is a program provided by Catholic Extension in partnership with local Catholic Charities offices. It provides emergency funds and services to a family after one or more of the undocumented income earning adults in the home are detained or deported by the US government. The families contribute to the fund on a monthly basis ($20 for an individual, $30 for a couple). The participant becomes eligible by enrolling through an agency such as Catholic Charities and paying their monthly fee to the Holy Family Fund. After the needs of the family are assessed, the family may receive benefits up to $5000 per enrolled participant to help pay for rent or house payments, utilities, health care, etc. to maintain stability for the family.
Our goal was raise a total of $25,000 for the two programs, both supported by Catholic Extension Society. Because of our parish’s overwhelming generosity, we presented Catholic Extension Society a check on Sunday, June 9th, for $73,848 which will be split between the Kino Border Initiative and the Holy Family Fund. Thank you Holy Family for far exceeding our financial goal!