month, Cardinal Roger Mahony of Los Angeles called on church leaders
and members to defy the bill if it becomes law. Catholics have also
participated in marches in several U.S. cities, demonstrating against
the bill, reported the El Paso Times.
Likewise, the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops has expressed its own opposition to the bill.
St. Pius X
Catholic Community in El Paso decided to voice their opposition by
hanging two large banners from the copper dome of their church. The
signs, which were put up Saturday, say: "Immigrants Welcome -- Oppose
The bill, which
was passed by the House in December and must be still approved by the
Senate, would make it a crime to help undocumented immigrants stay in
the U.S. It would require churches and other social organizations to
ask immigrants for legal documentation before providing assistance.
Bañuelas, the pastor at St. Pius X, told the El Paso Times that the
bill could send him and other church workers to prison for taking
groceries to the elderly, driving people to doctor appointments,
teaching English classes and other activities the church undertakes
without questioning people on their immigration status.
Bishop Armando Ochoa is expected to hold a press conference on the proposed immigration bill March 25.
both episcopal leaders and laypeople, continue to voice their
opposition to a pending U.S. immigration reform bill, H.R. 4437, which
they view as unfair and which could penalize churches for helping