Recognizing the Stranger
This year, the strategy is expanding into 19 dioceses across the west and southwest US. Says Senior IAF Organizer (and Austin Interfaith Supervisor Joe Rubio, "The Recognizing the Stranger strategy works with local parishes to identify, train, and mentor immigrant leaders to build connections among themselves and with nonimmigrant allies in their parishes and the broader community. It’s a collaborative effort among clergy, leaders, and organizers to develop capacity to tackle tough issues."
According to CCHD Director Ralph McCloud, "Recognizing the Stranger is particularly successful because it captures the connections between what happens at Mass on Sunday morning, how families live their lives throughout the week, and how parishioners interact with members of the broader community. I have been impressed that participants seek true change. In the process, parishes are strengthened, unified, and revitalized."
'Recognizing the Stranger' Austin was launched with the support and participation of Bishop Joe Vasquez.
Recognizing the Stranger, National Strategic Grant, CCHD Newsletter
'Recognizing the Stranger' Training (March 2019)
Follow Up Training (May 2019)
Next meeting: August 10th, 2019
[Statement excerpt below:]
"....on June 23, five deputies from the Sheriff's office appeared to be stationed at or near the Stoney Point community. People were stopped for speeding and DUI, which is appropriate. But they were also stopped for allegedly failing to use turn indicators, once for allegedly failing to use turn indicators within 500 feet of the intersection; for a broken or burnt out tail light; and for having mud on their license plate. These were very minor traffic infractions. To many, this appeared to be a targeted effort to locate and detain undocumented people. As previously reported, 23 Hispanics were arrested of which 13 were taken and moved into deportation proceedings.
By this action, which appears to have been against immigrants, the Sheriff has not increased people's confidence in law enforcement, which is what we had sought and strived to obtain in our prior dialogue with the Sheriff. This causes us serious concern and raises question of credibility in that dialogue...."
[Photo Credit: Ralph Barrera, Austin American Statesman]
Full Statement Here
'Zero Tolerance' Arrests Put 13 in ICE Custody, 'Had Nothing to Do With Immigration', Texas Sheriff Says, Miami Herald
El Aguacil del Condado Bastrop Rompe el Silencio Sobre el Operativo de Tránsito Donde Fueron Detenidos Varios Inmigrantes Indocumentados, Univision Austin
Faith Group Blasts Sheriff for Traffic Crackdown, Deportations, Austin American Statesman [pdf]
Bastrop Sheriff: Traffic Stop Had 'Nothing to Do with Immigration', Austin American Statesman
Residents Concerned After Traffic Arrests Lead to ICE Detentions, Spectrum News
Del Valle Neighborhood On Edge After Drivers Caught in Traffic Sting Are Turned Over to ICE, KUT 90.5
Líderes Religiosos de Bastrop Cuestionan Detenciones de Inmigrantes en Operativo de Tránsito, Univision
Bastrop Interfaith Leader Speaks Out Against Deportations Stemming from Traffic Operation, KVUE
Bastrop Interfaith Exige Un Fin a la Política de Cero Tolerancia en su Condado, Telemundo
Bastrop County Sheriff Defends Traffic Enforcement Sting, KXAN
Compassionate Immigration Reform
October 6, 2013
Chamber Leaders Join Central Texas Clergy in Immigration Education Effort
For the first time in Central Texas, leaders from two Chambers of Commerce joined clergy from Muslim, Jewish and Christian faith traditions for an afternoon of education about economic, business and legal perspectives on immigration reform. This second event in a campaign organized by clergy leadership, drew 220 participants — about twice as many as the first one. Testimonies from workers, divided families and DACA leaders highlighted the human cost; presentations by business leaders and legal experts outlined the economic and business costs of a lack of reform. All urged participants to meet with their legislative representatives and to demonstrate a constituency of voters that support compassionate reform.
Austin Interfaith Hosts Immigration Reform Event, Austin American Statesman
June 17, 2013
Central Texas Bishops & Religious Leaders Call for Immigration Reform
In a prayer service and press conference organized by Austin Interfaith, Central Texas Bishops and clergy from six religious denominations “pressed Tuesday for reforms centered on keeping families together and allowing unauthorized immigrants to earn legal residency with a path to citizenship….[stating] such principles are key to what they called just and humane immigration reforms.”
Central Texas Religious Leaders: Immigration Change Must be Just, Humane,Austin American Statesman [Printable version]