Catholic bishops on both sides of the Texas-Mexico border are releasing a letter to their parishes and elected officials to address what they call the "human tragedies" of the current immigration system. The clergy hope the letter will change misconceptions about undocumented immigrants.
The letter, Family Beyond Borders, is a 16-page booklet signed by 13 bishops in Laredo, Chihuahua, San Antonio, Las Cruces, N.M., and other cities along the border. It tells the stories of detained unaccompanied minors trying to cross into the United States, deported undocumented immigrants who are separated from their families, and statistics from the border patrol.
San Antonio Archbishop Gustavo García-Siller said the immigration system is sad and broken, and the breakup of the immigrant family is an offense against God and human conscience.
"It should no longer require an act of courage on the part of a legislator to apply the principals of moral ethics, true family values, decency, and justice," García-Siller said.
García-Siller said the immigration reform debate has gone from a discussion about national security to a partisan politics issue, blinding people from seeing the suffering of immigrants.
The letter has been sent to President Barack Obama and members of Congress.