Catholic Charities of St. Louis: A Moral Response to Separating Families

Jun 2018

As the charitable arm of the Archdiocese of St. Louis, we support Archbishop Robert J. Carlson’s June 19 statement addressing the separation of immigrant parents and children in which he stated, “Along with my brother bishops, I understand the need to have secure borders and to ensure that our country remains safe. But, to forcibly separate children from their parents is inhumane, morally unacceptable, and ineffective to the goal of deterrence and safety.”

In our work serving poor and vulnerable people throughout the 11 counties of the Archdiocese of St. Louis, Catholic Charities and our eight federated agencies frequently walk with those who have come to this country seeking relief from violence, extreme poverty, or both.

Examples of services provided by St. Francis Community Services, for example, include the Immigration Law Project; bilingual mental health counseling; and bilingual youth programs.

Another Catholic Charities program, LAMP (Language. Access. Multicultural. People.), offers interpreting and translation services, as well as intercultural education.

St. Francis Community Services’ Southside Center and Catholic Legal Assistance Ministry (CLAM) team members have discussed the issue of separating immigrant and refugee families, including the local impact, with several media representatives:

Unaccompanied child immigrants finding their way to St. Louis (KMOV, 6/19/18)

VERIFY: What happens next for immigrant families at the border? (KSDK, 6/20/18)

Beyond borders: Children at heart of local implications, impressions of Trump’s immigration policy (STL Public Radio, 6/22/18)

St. Francis Community Services responds to new immigration policies (St. Louis Review, 6/28/18)


Read more about the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops’ (USCCB) position and responses, as reported by Catholic media:

After national outcry, Trump signs executive order seeking resolution to family separation policy (Catholic News Service, as seen in St. Louis Review, 6/20/18)

When bishops speak on moral issues, Catholics are compelled to listen (St. Louis Review, 6/21/18)

Editorial: Catholics are compelled to follow bishops’ moral lead (St. Louis Review, 6/20/18)