January 13, 2009

HOW W WAS OUR FIRST CATHOLIC PRESIDENT:

Welcoming the Stranger: the Human Rights of Migrants (Kansas City - St. Joseph Bishop Robert W. Finn's message for Immigration Awareness Week, January 4-11)

A central principle of Catholic social teaching is the right to emigrate. Although there is little written on the right to immigrate – that is, enter a country – clearly the right to leave a person’s country without undue restraint implies that there be places that allow and provide good people meaningful opportunities to pursue their legitimate well-being and that of their families. In their several messages for World Migration Day and the Vatican’s addresses to the United Nations, the Popes have urged such openness to those who legitimately seek relief.

Specifically the Church bases the right to migrate on three other very important human rights: the right of a family to sustenance, the priority of the family over the state, and the right of economic initiative. These three rights have their origin in the principle of the universal common good, which is defined as “the sum total of social conditions which allow people, either as groups or as individuals, to reach their fulfillment more fully and more easily” (Compendium of the Social Doctrine of the Church #164, cf. also Catholic Social Teaching on the Economics of Immigration, and similar articles by Andrew M. Yuengert)

As we mark the Church’s observance of Migration Week, it is important to pray and work for just federal initiatives that will accomplish worthy ends for both immigrants and the sovereignty of nations. A sound national immigration policy will help to minimize reactionary state and local solutions that sometimes grow out of political posturing and simple prejudice, and that in turn facilitate exploitation of foreign nationals.

Reblog this post [with Zemanta]
Posted by Orrin Judd at January 13, 2009 3:44 PM
blog comments powered by Disqus
« HE'S NOT A BUSH HOLDOVER?: | Main | A MISSED OPPORTUNITY OF THE WoT: »