An American Catholic bishop staged a protest against immigration laws by personally escorting Central American migrants across the U.S. border on Thursday.
Surrounded by media and activists, El Paso Bishop Mark Seitz slammed the government for their “inhumane” treatment of migrants coming into the United States illegally.
“Standing here at the U.S.-Mexico border, how do we begin to diagnose the soul of our country?” Seitz asked.
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“A government and society which view fleeing children and families as threats. A government which treats children in U.S. custody worse than animals. A government and society who turn their backs on pregnant mothers, babies and families and make them wait in Ciudad Juarez without a thought to the crushing consequences on this challenged city.”
“This government and this society are not well.”
Newswars.com reports: Seitz and a Mexican priest reportedly prayed over a Honduran family while escorting them across the international bridge to make an asylum claim with U.S. authorities.
“The family was initially stopped in the middle of the bridge, as tempers flared between reporters and border officers who were momentarily unclear about whether to allow journalists to cross into U.S. territory as temperatures topped 100 degrees,” the Dallas Morning News reports. “The family was finally taken into custody by U.S. officials.”
The Diocese of El Paso issued a statement explaining the “Faith Action” protest staged by Seitz, saying it was necessary to draw attention to “actions taken to criminalize migration at the U.S.-Mexico border, including the expansion of the ‘Remain in Mexico’ policy, the deployment of security forces of both countries to the border, the ongoing deaths of migrant families in the Rio Grande and grave conditions in migrant processing centers.”
Seitz published a “Pastoral Letter on Migration” in 2017, condemning the Trump administration and calling for a “moratorium” on deportations of illegal immigrants.