Loading
Catholic Church in Australia seeks refugee status for WYD pilgrim

.- The Catholic Church in Australia is trying to secure refugee status for a young Kenyan woman who came to Australia for World Youth Day and wants to stay because she claims that she will be circumcised and forced to marry if she returns to her country.

Teresia Ndikaru Muturi came to World Youth Day last year knowing she did not want to return to Kenya.

"Because I'm fearing my own mum for how she's forcing me to marry [an] old man, to leave school and yet I don't want to leave my school. Also I'm fearing to be circumcised," she told the Australian Broadcasting Corporation (ABC).

Her mother is reportedly a member of the outlawed Mungiki sect, which practices female genital mutilation. According to Muturi, the sect believes one can only become a full woman and get married once one is circumcised.

When she was 16, her mother had told her she had arranged for her marriage to an older man and had received a payment of cash, cows and goats.

"He brought cows and goats for my mum, so no way I could escape from it, I have to get married," she said.

The young woman fled and lived with her stepsister until her uncle, a priest, arranged for her to come to Australia.

Muturi’s application for asylum has been rejected. She was also unsuccessful at Australia’s Refugee Review Tribunal.

Franciscan Sister Aileen Crowe has applied to the Minister for Immigration and Citizenship Chris Evans to intervene, but that effort too was unsuccessful. A second application, which includes new information about Muturi’s psychological state, is pending.

“There is nothing for them. Australian law up until now does not recognize them at all. The only way they can be recognized is if they go to the Minister,” Sister Crowe told ABC, characterizing women like Muturi as the silent asylum seekers.

Last week Immigration Department staff told Muturi she had to buy a plane ticket to leave the country next month.

A spokesman for Minister Evans says that she will not be forced to leave the country until the new information has been thoroughly assessed.

Sr. Crowe said that the government’s approach is inconsistent.

"Four Ugandan girls suffered the same possibilities, all got protection on the first go. It's just a lottery, but people's lives are at stake in this lottery," she said, claiming that Evans is not receiving all the information he needs to decide on cases.


Ads by AdsLiveMedia(What's this?)

* The number of messages that can be online is limited. CNA reserves the right to edit messages for content and tone. Comments and opinions expressed by users do not necessarily reflect the opinions or beliefs of CNA. CNA will not publish comments with abusive language, insults or links to other pages

RESOURCES »

Ads by Google (What's this?)
Ads by Google (What's this?)

Featured Videos

Pope Francis celebrates the closing Mass and announces site of next World Youth Day
Pope Francis celebrates the closing Mass and announces site of next World Youth Day
Pope Francis visits poor neighborhood and meets with young people from Argentina
Pope Francis celebrates Mass at the National Shrine of Our Lady of Aparecida
Denver rally draws hundreds in support of religious freedom
Pope Francis prays over a sick man in St Peter's Square
Denver women's clinic will offer natural, Catholic care
Interview Clips: Barbara Nicolosi speaks to CNA
US Cardinals press conference at North American College
Pope Benedict to retire to monastery inside Vatican City
Pope cites waning strength as reason for resignation
Hundreds convene in Denver to urge respect for life
New Orange bishop encourages Catholic unity in diversity
Chinese pro-life activist calls for reform, international attention
At Lincoln installation, Bishop Conley says holiness is success
Mother Cabrini shrine reopens in Chicago after a decade
Ordination of 33 deacons fills St. Peter's with joy
Cardinal says "Charity is the mother of all the virtues"
Augustine Institute expands evangelization effort with new campus
Bishops recall 'Way of St. James' as chance to trust in God
Los Angeles cathedral's newest chapel houses Guadalupe relic
Apr
21

Liturgical Calendar

April 21, 2014

Monday within the Octave of Easter

All readings:
Today »
This year »

Catholic Daily

Gospel of the Day

Mt 28:8-15

Gospel
Date
04/21/14
04/20/14
04/19/14

Daily Readings


First Reading:: Acts 2:14, 22-33
Gospel:: Mt 28:8-15

Saint of the Day

Holy Thursday »

Saint
Date
04/21/14

Homily of the Day

Mt 28:8-15

Homily
Date
04/21/14
04/20/14
04/19/14

Ads by AdsLiveMedia.com

Ads by AdsLiveMedia.com
     HTML
Text only
Headlines
  

Follow us: