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Nazareth, Pa., United States

Wednesday, June 20, 2018

Allentown Diocese Bishops Condemns Trump's "Separation" Policy

In previous posts, I have listed a number of the religious leaders who have condemned Trump's recent decision to rip children away from their parents at the border. You can now add my Bishop to the list. The Most Rev. Alfred A Schlert, who delivered both the Invocation and Benediction at induction of a first-generation Lebanese American as Northampton County president Judge yesterday, has released this statement:

Reasonable people may disagree over the best ways to control illegal immigration to the United States.
Bishop Schlert at the Baccalaureate Mass for ACCHS
late last month. 
It is hard to disagree, however, with the growing chorus of voices from both sides of the political aisle, and from religious leaders of many faiths, that we should not be solving this problem by taking children from their parents at the border.
United States immigration officials are separating children from their families under a policy in which all cases of illegal entry are referred for criminal prosecution. Children are not allowed to accompany their parents to jail, so they are separated and held in detention facilities.
The nation’s Catholic Bishops have condemned using the separation of families as a way to deter illegal immigration. Bishops from around the country have called this practice immoral, cruel, unjust, ineffective and contrary to human decency. The forcible separation of children from their families is in direct violation of Catholic beliefs and values.
This is not a debate about whether our borders should be secure. They should be, and my brother Bishops and I believe that our government’s leaders should take all reasonable steps to keep them that way.
Rather, I would submit that this is a debate about human dignity, about doing the right thing for innocent children, about the sanctity of the family, and about the integrity of the moral compass of our country and its people.
Remember that ours is a nation of immigrants. Few among us would be here if our parents or grandparents or great-grandparents were not afforded the chance to come to this land of opportunity in search of a better life, or to escape persecution.
The Catholic Church, too, is built on a foundation of immigration. We have a long history of embracing immigrants, migrants, refugees and others in need, and proving them with pastoral care and a sense of community and belonging. Our Church has responded to Christ’s call to “welcome the stranger among us.”  We are taught to treat the newcomer as we would treat Jesus Christ himself, were He to arrive at our nation’s border in search of a better life.
The news reports from our Southwestern border are heartbreaking. Imagine how these children must feel, not knowing when or if they will see their parents again. I pray that our nation’s leaders will find a way to care for our national interest on illegal immigration while also treating all people with the compassion and respect they deserve as human beings.
Meanwhile, as we work to find a just and humane solution to the separation crisis, we also must continue to seek effective resolution of other pressing immigration issues: the granting of political asylum for those fleeing domestic and gang-related violence; the search for a pathway to citizenship for young immigrants, called Dreamers; the tragedy of eliminating Temporary Protected Status for immigrants from certain countries, many of whom have been here for years and are productive members of our society; and the plight of Christians fleeing persecution in the Middle East.
Please join me in praying for successful resolutions, and in praying that all of us, regardless of political affiliation, can open our hearts and participate in meaningful and civil public discourse on these issues.
**********
People were bringing little children to Jesus for him to place his hands on them, but the disciples rebuked them. When Jesus saw this, he was indignant. He said to them, “Let the little children come to me, and do not hinder them, for the kingdom of God belongs to such as these. Truly I tell you, anyone who will not receive the kingdom of God like a little child will never enter it.” And he took the children in his arms, placed his hands on them and blessed them. - Mark 10:13-16

42 comments:

Anonymous said...

Seriously? Is this a joke to you?

Bernie O'Hare said...

I DELeted an attempted deflection.

Anonymous said...

I like the Bishop. But my Church's solution is open borders. That’s what Dems want, that’s what the US Chamber of Commerce wants. The Church’s heart is in the right place. Ds want needy voters. Big business wants an underclass of slaves for cheap labor. There’s more agreement among the ruling class than people think. Sadly, open borders and a welfare state are incompatible and most voters know it. That’s how you get Trump. And he’s going to be re-elected easily if immigration remains a key issue.

Anonymous said...

Here's what's missing in understanding what is really going on. Trump came before the microphone yesterday and clearly stated he wants families kept together throughout the immigration process. Trump then instructed CONGRESS to fix the law that makes the temporary separations possible. Yes, TEMPORARY (20 days).

You see, it is CONGRESS who creates the law, and Trump is calling on CONGRESS to fix it. This is exactly what democracy looks like. It's explained in our Constitution.

The previous administration chose to work outside the prescribed procedures. That is what created the mess we are in . . . NOT Trump.

Trump is calling on CONGRESS to change what it allowed to happen.

Now, back to the usual hysteria and name-calling about anything related to the current Executive Branch.

Anonymous said...

You have a Bishop? With the title The Most Reverend? Now that's funny. Thanks for the comic relief, O'Hare. Much appreciated.

Anonymous said...

Illegal border crossings are not our problem and kids shouldn't be separated from parents. Period. LEGAL immigration is our problem. 1.5 million a year? That's ridiculous. The border crossers are a solid investment. They come from flawed cultures, few will compete for meaningful jobs, and they provide reliable cheap labor and hold wages in check for ALL industries. Yeah, tell me about all the Guatemalan and El Salvadorian doctors and engineers you run into. People hate Walmart, despite their significant influence on holding retail prices down across the country. Poor folks would be screwed without Walmart. Illegals take shitty jobs and/or ones in fields that are extremely cost-sensitive, like framing and construction. Nobody wants to pay the higher costs of American workers who want benefits and vacations and sick days. We'd be crewed without them. Our economy from the country's beginnings has always relied upon a large underclass: slaves in the South, Chinese and Irish on the railroads, Polish, Italian, and Irish in mines and quarries. Slavery and exploitation sound horrible. But they're the American way. Mexicans and Central Americans may make a go of it here. That'll be great. In the meantime, we need cheap labor and if we can get away without fully vesting them in our country, why is this a problem?

Anonymous said...

6:11- the only problem I see is we need fewer and fewer low-skilled, low wage earners. Improvements in technology are already taking such jobs away. Robotics, in particular.
I think the need for people to mow lawns, etc. is overstated. Healthy teenagers are locked in their bedrooms playing video games.

Anonymous said...

I can't completely disagree. But empires always need slaves. Native borns expect protections and form unions and such. That's expensive. The raw truth is nobody wants to pay higher prices. A post yesterday decried inflation. We go crazy over a few points in the prime lending rate. Immigrants/slaves keep everything in check. If we codify the current system of second-class citizenship for illegals, we get all the benefits and minimize the long-term cost. And remember, it's wrong to separate kids from parents. Kids pick fruit too.

Anonymous said...

Victims, victims, victims...

Foreign children are Victims for being dragged over the border by Mexican Gang cartels who want to divert Border Patrol officers in one direction, while smuggling drugs, weapons, muslim terrorists and whatever in another direction while the Border Patrol officers are busy playing daddy to screaming chidlren without their parents..

Illegals Alien adults drag along children, who may or may not be their own with them across the border. You see, they've been coached by the cartels in what to say so they can file their phony "asylum" claims, and they've learned that if they're with children they'll get treated differently by the Border Patrol...

Everyone is a "victim" here.. aren't they? Democrats scream "don't cage the kids"... while all their bullshit going on in Washington is on full public display, but no look over here. don't watch that... We don't have anything else to offer the voters except Trump Cages Up Kids in barbed wire pens like animals. Waahhh Waaah Waahhh. Victim Victim Victim...

And the good Priest stops molesting kids to say Kids shouldn't be caged up.. Of course, he's behind a wall as well...

Give me a fucking break......

Anonymous said...

The supply of children to exploit must be getting low in this country, so I guess we need more immigrant children.

Plus, immigrant children are less likely to contact authorities if abused.

Shame on the Catholic Bishops for their self-serving statement.

Anonymous said...

How quick entitled republicans forget their own ancestry. Grandparents or great grandparents greeted at Ellis Island, given a physical and sent on their merry way. They were no differnt than thoze seeking a better life.
Sometimes arriving at Churches in small towns seeking food, a place to stay and a job. They are hiring in the mines, They are hiring at the steel mill they were told....PA was full of sanctuary cities. Now entitlement republicans want the world to ignore their storied past and let us give e titled republicans a participation award for being fortunate enough to be born on us Soil. Trump is a cancer to the Republican brand. 2020 cannot come fast enough before we can move on from the dark ages. America is better than trump.

Anonymous said...

It's pretty clear what is going on here. The Democrats with "Open Borders" nonsense is an attempt to finish the job and to make open borders the legal, as opposed to only the de facto, status quo. Unlike Obama, Trump is following the law and the Democrats are using kids to try and get their way. Just as they do with gun control, they shove the kids in people's faces and whine and scream.....

The reason is simple: millions more illegals means millions of additional reliable votes for Democrats in their plan to make the United States a one-party country like what they have achieved in the state of California in less than two decades as the result of the invasion of illegals there, most of whom can now vote.

Anonymous said...

Anonymous 7:26 said...

How quick entitled republicans forget their own ancestry. Grandparents or great grandparents greeted at Ellis Island, given a physical and sent on their merry way.


You're making the point of the current law.

They went through Ellis Island, which was a designated point of entry, and processed under whatever the law of the United States was at that time. They didn't land at whatever beach they felt like and melt into the population.

The border needs to be secured. Period. If people want to enter legally, they can go to designated points of entry and apply according to our laws.

If you don't like the laws, change them. But not enforcing the law is creating a situation where people drag their kids on a very dangerous trip across the desert, often leading to death. That needs to stop.


BTW, I took a trip to Niagara Falls, Canada a few years ago. I got passports for the kids and complied with the laws of Canada. If I hadn't, I would have expected to be charged and treated accordingly. I certainly wouldn't have expected to be treated differently because I had my kids along. I don't even want to think about what would happen if I was going to Mexico and entered there illegally.

Anonymous said...

7:26 "How quick entitled republicans forget their own ancestry. Grandparents or great grandparents greeted at Ellis Island, given a physical and sent on their merry way. They were no differnt than thoze seeking a better life."

Following the law is required for current immigrants as it was for those who came to the United States in previous generations. Illegal Aliens were not welcomed then either, and were force ably removed. Sorry, follow the law and you're welcome.

Anonymous said...

Trump and the rest of you who think HIS POLICY is justified are disgusting. Using children as a bargaining chip is the tactic of a sick mind.

Anonymous said...

Democrats are the problem. They don’t care about crime and want illegal aliens in the country, no matter how bad they may be, to pour into and infest our Country

What else do the Democrats have to offer? Back to Obama and Hillary Clinton ?

Anonymous said...

7:31 - I'm afraid you are correct. It's the same strategy playing out in the European Union. America shouldn't be looking to enlarge its dependent class. California is seeing a large number of businesses and working people leave as taxes rise out of control. But, I'd rather see single states destroy themselves rather than an entire nation. If California goes, residents have 49 other options. Our immigration system needs much better control. That should be obvious to everyone now.

Anonymous said...

The Catholic Church is now advocating for children!!!...you can't make this stuff up. I would support open borders to let the Central American refugees move freely into the US as long as all the refugee camps and housing complexes are put in the all-white suburbs and the kids into the all-white suburban school districts or the Catholics can take them into their schools. I'm sick of well meaning, liberal policies always resulting in poor minorities getting dumped into our urban communities and into segregated urban schools.

Anonymous said...

Democrats pffered Trump funding for the wall as part of daca. Trump just wants an election issue. Filthy man.

Anonymous said...

I’m just glad we’re talking about immigration. It distracts from the outrageous IG report. But it’s the most important issue of our time. It’s also an easy winner for Rs, unlike in the 80s and 90s. The wheel has turned. The crush of kids at the border will abate, as policy is made to agree with law. As with most crises, this one is self inflicted by bad policy makers and can be easily fixed.

Anonymous said...

Oh please, run on open borders, Democrats!!!

Keep doing these hit pieces, Bernie.

Thanks to all in advance for their most appreciated cooperation in this matter.

Anonymous said...

You know Bernie, for someone so concerned with the separation of church and state, I find it really odd you post this piece. Government policy is a matter for the government, not the catholic church. This is not a church issue. I wish he was so adamant about priests sexual abuse of children as he is about immigration. Or maybe sexual abuse isn't "in direct belief of catholic beliefs and values."

Anonymous said...

I agree with 8:28. It is time to get serious about immigration to America, before we become like several countries in Europe.

As things now stand, we are bringing in additions to our welfare rolls. That's undeniable. Look, mowing lawns and picking fruit provide wages low enough to qualify for an entire basket of public taxpayer assistance. Those lists WILL grow as people take advantage of everything available. I wouldn't blame them!

We just can't afford to service who we have here now.

Anonymous said...

Get over it. Laws are laws and are finally being enforced. Not like the idiot that was in office for the last 8 yrs. and swore an oath to do and didn't ! Thanks god the witch didn't get elected .

Anonymous said...

Every country these people come from have a US Ebassy where they can go to seek asylum. Trump making it difficult if not impossible to continue to kicking the can down the road. Congress best act in the interest of this country.

Anonymous said...

Trump really needs to watch this

https://www.facebook.com/FilmingCops/videos/1305974309437661/?t=10

Anonymous said...

Is bawling in public going to persuade voters to abandon President Trump and support open borders? Quite likely, the opposite.

It's hysteria. And an overplaying of one's hand. Which is what the Democrats have repeatedly done in its quest to Get Trump. It's not going to work this time, either, but they sure are making a spectacle of themselves as they do it.

Oh spare us. Bawling isn't going to win voters over to the leftist side, either.

Bernie O'Hare said...

Please note:

I have deleted a number of attempts to deflect attention away from the barbarism of Trump and sessions. this is about the separation of children from parents or close family relatives. It is not about the IG report, abortion, the "left" or the behavior of some priests. I will delete all comments that try to change the subject.

Anonymous said...

I’ve been shown photos of buses with child seats and told it was Trump’s mobilization. The photos ended up being from 2016, prior to Trump’s election. I’ve been shown an ACLU report showing horrific abuse of immigrant kids at our border under Trump. The report turned out to be from ‘09 to ‘14 before Trump announced for president. Trump disgusts me. But I don’t trust the images, footage, of media reports one single bit. I’m not convinced this crisis is even real. I don’t believe either side. The hyperbole on this blog is a perfect example. His Excellency may have been taken, as we’ve all been many times, recently. This blog and the rest of the media have laughably damaged credibility. But they are somewhat entertaining to read with a jaundiced eye.

george schaller said...

Bernie, I know of two children that have lost faith in god or Jesus because of separation from family. There punishment for siding with the good side was to be sent to some pedophile camp. One can only imagine what is in these youths mind as there god or jesus has turn into a handheld gaget!

Separation of children from either parent in thoZe tender ageZ is traumatictraumatic no matter if the children are forinors or American born. This shit is some ugly americanism shit born and breed on this soil in the dark heartZ of the itZ that are berrien and itZ not a left or right thing!
republican redd
humanist by design
not a party favor

Anonymous said...

Created by CLINTON and UPHELD BY OBAMA TWO TERMS...... TRUTH... what kind of people drag their kids to a border knowing they are committing a crime? whats next open all the prison doors cause the prisoners should not be separated from the family? They are committing a crime by entering illegally. Bernie.. BEFORE you crank up the agenda attend a swearing in like yesterday for those that did it the LEGAL WAY in Northampton County Court!

Anonymous said...

Lots of angry, old, white racists posting on this page. Not surprised. It's the Valley!

Anonymous said...

4.55
So why did Comrade trump reverse his own policy?
trumpie caved to the people who protested his actions.
It shows that decent people can overcome the haters.

Anonymous said...

6.24
Comrade trump ordered the cruelty-- that means his actions were not what decent Americans want.
Clearly trumpie was wrong in his attempt to use cruelty to get his way.
deflection to other things does not change the facts.
As to your rant against President Obama--clearly he gets to live rent free in your head as your bitterness is still evident.
you will carry it forever.

Anonymous said...

This Executive Order, issued today, addresses the child separation issue effectively.

It addresses the existing policy which was passed under Bush 43. Then Obama adhered to it for the purpose of trying to protect kids who are potentially involved in human trafficking situations.

Illegal Aliens and their families get caught in the crossfire of that when they illegally cross the border at the behest of criminal Mexican gangs. If Trump can find a way to resolve the family separation issue when they are arrested, more power to him.

But he didn't cave on Catch and Release. That's what Democrats really wanted to pressure him into doing. He's defused their hyper-hype which is really wise, IMO.

Bernie O'Hare said...

Trump caved and did what he said he could not do. In other words, he’s a liar.

Anonymous said...

7.50
"But he didn't cave on Catch and Release."
sure he did.
try
https://www.washingtonpost.com/powerpost/gop-leaders-voice-hope-that-bill-addressing-family-separations-will-pass-thursday/2018/06/20/cc79db9a-7480-11e8-b4b7-308400242c2e_story.html?utm_term=.1d1cbe063009

"The plan would keep families together in federal custody while awaiting prosecution for illegal border crossings, potentially violating a 1997 court settlement limiting the duration of child detentions."

The only way to not violate Flores would be to let the parents go too, which would be the "catch and release" thing Trump hates so much.

in 2016 the 9th Circuit court of appeals clarified it to mean kids can only be detained for 20 days, after which they must be placed in the "least restrictive" setting possible (ideally with mom and/or dad, or with relatives). In fact, it's part of what Sessions has been citing in arguing that BOY HOWDY, I'MA JUST FOLLOWIN' THE LAW!.

Anonymous said...

"In other words, he's a liar," as in every word that spews from his ugly mouth is a lie.

Anonymous said...

Obama in 2014: Don’t Send Children to Border with Smugglers, ‘They’ll Get Sent Back’

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=C5Ifko9njDQ&feature=youtu.be&t=11

Anonymous said...

Get rid of Obama's executive order, two weeks later, sign your own executive order essentially doing the same thing. Which avoids real legislative reform all while looking tough on immigration and magnanimous for the signing statement.

...and we hear from Jesus instead of Stormy. Trump is the Ringmaster!

Anonymous said...

Obama put kids in cages and foil blankets. He subjected them to kidnapping and rape, according to the ACLU. Trump, and Obama are not that different, folks. They're really not that different at all.

Anonymous said...

Hate to tell you, he expected Congress to do its rightful job. They didn't. The law still needs to be changed.