Newark, N.J., Sep 4, 2019 / 17:00 pm
Cardinal Joseph Tobin, the Archbishop of Newark, blessed a group of protesters on Wednesday, as a they demonstrated in front of the city’s Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) office.
The group gathered Sept. 4 to protest the Trump administration’s policies that separate children from their parents if the parents are found to have entered the country illegally. Some carried images of children who have died at the border or in U.S. custody.
Speaking to the crowd, the cardinal offered his own voice in opposition to the policies.
“These draconian measures are not a solution to our broken immigration system. They are violations to human dignity,” said Tobin. He encouraged Catholics to contact their elected officials, “and urge them not to manipulate immigrant families as political pawns.”
Tobin also led the group, which was estimated to be in the hundreds, in a recitation of the Rosary.
Protesters also carried a stylized image of the Madonna and Child depicted as Latin Americans and framed behind a piece of chain-link fencing.
Some of the group, who had agreed to risk arrest in an act of nonviolent civil disobedience, blocked traffic by laying down on the road in the shape of a cross. The number of arrested was not immediately available.
Wednesday’s protest was similar to an event in July staged at the Russell Senate Office Building.