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L.A. Archbishop Gomez urges lawmakers not to delay on immigration

April 24, 2013|By Evan Halper

SACRAMENTO -- Los Angeles Roman Catholic Archbishop Jose Gomez and several other Catholic Church officials in California took time from their retreat in Sacramento on Wednesday to make a push for Congress to keep up the momentum on changes to the country’s immigration laws.

In a gaggle with reporters, Gomez said reform of the country’s immigration laws is “long overdue.”

Gomez, who was joined by San Francisco Archbishop Salvatore Cordileone, as well as several bishops from around the state, urged Congress not to delay in passing a bill, saying the bipartisan package of legislation that has come together offers hope for keeping immigrant families together.

“It is not about politics for us,” Gomez said. “It is about people. It is about human rights and human dignity.”

The church officials urged Congress not to put off the effort following the bombings in Boston in which the suspects were immigrants. “We believe the immigration reform should continue,” Cordileone said. “This is the right moment…. We should not allow a tragedy to derail the effort.”

Gomez said passage of the measure in Congress would honor the legacy of Cesar Chavez, whose “love for God led him to fight for justice for migrant workers.”

“Our system is broken,” Gomez said. “It is breaking families and people’s spirits…. We are not talking about statistics. We are talking about families. We are are talking about parents who, with no warning, may not be home for dinner and may not see their families again for 10 years.” 

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Twitter: @evanhalper

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