The Immigration Debate
March 2, 2011
Daniel Cardinal DiNardo is among the Texas Interfaith Leaders who have signed a statement on immigration legislation in the 82nd Texas Legislature. Below is the text of the statement, which was released today by the Texas Catholic Conference.
As Texas religious leaders, we unite our voices to call on our Legislature for a new and gracious tone in our states immigration debate. We encourage lawmakers to focus on healing Texas communities and affirming the rights and inherent worth of every person.
Our nations immigration system is flawed and results in suffering not only within our borders, but also throughout the rest of the world. Our faith traditions have called strenuously and tirelessly for Congress to reform our federal immigration system, and we will continue to do so.
We recognize and support the right of the United States to protect and secure our border and enforce our immigration laws. We support the work of lawmakers and law enforcement officials in protecting all people in Texas. However, when working to maintain and improve public safety, our Texas Legislators should be cautious when considering policies that could detract from safety and risk the inadvertent deprivation of the civil and constitutional rights of citizens and lawful permanent residents.
We urge Texas legislators to provide guidance and leadership to our state by rejecting policies that could encourage discrimination, co-opt local law enforcement, or scapegoat immigrants.
As policymakers and leaders, Texas legislators have the opportunity and responsibility to guide our whole community into a future of compassion, gratitude, and mutual respect. By affirming the dignity of every person, including those who migrate, lawmakers can help the people of Texas move from fear to respect. And only with respect can we work with all Americans to build a truly just national immigration system.
Daniel Cardinal DiNardo, Archbishop of Galveston/Houston
Most Rev. Daniel E. Flores, Bishop of the Diocese of Brownsville
Most Rev. David Fellhauer, Bishop of the Diocese of Victoria
Most Rev. Curtis J. Guillory, Bishop of the Diocese of Beaumont
Most Rev. Joe S. Vasquez, Bishop of the Diocese of Austin
Most Rev. Placido Rodriguez, C.M.F., Bishop of the Diocese of Lubbock
Most Rev. Oscar Cantu, S.T.L., Auxiliary Bishop of the Archdiocese of San Antonio
Most Rev. Janes Tamayo, Bishop of the Diocese of Laredo
Most Rev. Kevin J. Farrell, Bishop of the Diocese of Dallas
Most Rev. Michael D. Pfeifer, O.M.I., Bishop of the Diocese of San Angelo
Most Rev. Michael Mulvey, Bishop of the Diocese of Corpus Christi
Most Rev. Armando Ochoa, Bishop of the Diocese of El Paso
Most Rev. Kevin Vann, Bishop of the Diocese of Fort Worth
Most Rev. Gustavo Garcia-Siller, Archbishop of the Archdiocese of San Antonio
Most Rev. Mark J. Seitz, Auxillary Bishop of Diocese of Dallas
Bishop Max D. Whitfield, New Mexico Annual Conference of the United Methodist Church
Bishop W. Earl Bledsoe, North Texas Annual Conference of the United Methodist Church
Bishop James Dorff, Southwest Texas and Rio Grande Annual Conferences of the United Methodist Church
Bishop J. Michael Lowry, Central Texas Annual Conference of the United Methodist Church
Bishop Janice Huie, Texas Annual Conference of the United Methodist Church
Bishop Michael Rinehart, TX-LA Gulf Coast Synod of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America
Bishop Ray Tiemann, Southwestern Texas Synod of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America
Bishop Kevin S. Kanouse, Northern Texas-Northern Louisiana Synod of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America
The Rev. Dani Loving Cartwright, Regional Minister & President, Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) in the Southwest
Rev. Douglas Anders, Conference Minister, South Central Conference of the United Church of Christ
Susan Y. Paynter, Director Texas Baptist Christian Life Commission
Dr. Jess Romero, Director of the Immigration Service and Aid Center of the Baptist General Convention of Texas and Baptist University of the Amricas
Pastor Nestor Menjivar, Iglesia Bautista Principe de Paz of Austin
Dr. Javier Elizondo, Executive Vice President and Provost, Baptist University of the Americas, San Antonio
Patty Lane, Director of Intercultural Ministries, Texas Baptists
Elder Hilary Shuford, Executive Presbyter, Mission Presbytery, Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.), San Antonio
Rev. Robert W. Mueller, Chair of General Council, Mission Presbytery
Rabbi Neal Katz, Congregation Beth El, Tyler
Rabbi Barry H.D. Block, Senior Rabbi, Temple Beth-El, San Antonio
Rabbi Ralph Mecklenburger, Beth-El Congregation, Fort Worth
Rabbi Neil Blumofe, Senior Rabbi, Congregation Agudas Achim of Austin
Rabbi Rachel Kobrin, Congregation Agudas Achim of Austin
Dr. Yusuf Z. Kavakci, Imam & Founding Dean, Suffa Islamic Seminary, Islamic Association of North Texas
Imam Moujahed Bakhach, Islamic Association of Tarrant County
Imam Islam Mossaad, North Austin Muslim Community Center
Read more: Senior Texas Religious Leaders Call for New and Gracious Tone in State Immigration Debate