On Friday, just before the official begining of Alumni Weekend at Conception Seminary College, Bishop John Wester of Salt Lake City spoke with the Conception community on the issue of immigration. Bishop Wester serves as the chairman of the USCCB Committee on Migration.

The conference room in St. Mauer Hall was filled to capacity with students, Monks and alumni who had arrived early and were interested in hearing the bishop speak.

In his talk Bishop Wester outlined the many nuances and important aspects of the immigration issue. He did a very thorough job at explaining the Catholic Church’s teachings on this important issue.

Personally I was very happy to have Bishop Wester come and speak. My mother was not born in the United States, so obviously this topic quite literally strikes close to home.

Additionally, I have spent two weeks (one in high school, one in college) ministering to migrant peoples. First, I went and spent a week in Tijuana, Mexico, visting with people and building schools for the children. A year or so later I went to Chicago and spend the week doing hispanic ministry. Both of these experiences showed me the many intricacies and nuances of this issue. These experiences provided me with not just one, but many faces to respresent this issue, so that now when I hear of people speaking about the topic my mind immeadiately is turned towards the faces of the people I met in Tijuana and Chicago.

Bishop Wester urged that we as Catholics become more informed about immigration and the Catholic Church’s teaching relating to immigration. He reccommended that anyone looking to learn more visit the USCCB’s Web site: http://www.justiceforimmigrants.org

Please pray for the poor, the migrant people, and our politicians, that they may enact just and fair immigration reform laws.

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