May 01, 2007

What does the Church teach about immigrants?

THIS (click on it) is happening on May 1.

That is why I am re-posting the following.


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Point 2241 in the Catechism of the Catholic Church has four sentences. Here they are with my comments in red following each one.
The more prosperous nations are obliged, to the extent they are able, to welcome the foreigner in search of the security and the means of livelihood which he cannot find in his country of origin.
For whatever reason, some of the more prosperous nations may have less or little ability to offer such a welcome. Their obligation to offer that welcome diminishes accordingly. Furthermore, this sentence is about the foreigner who is “in search of the security and the means of livelihood which he cannot find in his country of origin.” A nation has no such obligation toward any foreigner who is merely in search of pleasure or material comfort beyond the necessities of life.

Public authorities should see to it that the natural right is respected that places a guest under the protection of those who receive him.
A guest in a foreign country is not the same as an illegal immigrant. A guest is one who is openly and willingly received by another country. A guest has a natural right to be protected by his hosts.

Political authorities, for the sake of the common good for which they are responsible, may make the exercise of the right to immigrate subject to various juridical conditions, especially with regard to the immigrants' duties toward their country of adoption.
Political authorities are responsible for the common good. In the exercise of that responsibility, political authorities may impose juridical conditions on those who wish to immigrate. Immigrants have duties toward their host country.

Immigrants are obliged to respect with gratitude the material and spiritual heritage of the country that receives them, to obey its laws and to assist in carrying civic burdens.
Note the obligations of immigrants:
“to respect with gratitude the material and spiritual heritage” of their host country;
to obey the laws of that country;
"to assist in carrying civic burdens" which may include the payment of taxes.


6 Comments:

Blogger Histor the Wise said...

It's nice to see someone drag out the CCC and use it to talk about immigrants. It may seem like 'proof-texting' but it does have the advantage of providing a basis for argument.

Histor

5:34 AM  
Blogger Roman Sacristan said...

Very interesting to see what the Church teaches.
People often forget that there is a legitimate system for immigration into the U.S. It may be onerous at times, but it does work, and many, many people have gone through it.
Your comments make me wonder if certain bishops read the CCC and/or bother to actually interpret it correctly.

10:17 AM  
Blogger Jeff said...

Let me re-highlight if I make make so bold, Father, in my own fashion:

The more prosperous nations are obliged, to the extent they are able, to welcome the foreigner in search of the security and the means of livelihood which he cannot find in his country of origin.
For whatever reason, some of the more prosperous nations may have less or little ability to offer such a welcome. Their obligation to offer that welcome diminishes accordingly.


I am afraid I am very skeptical that we are doing all we can to welcome those seeking to find the means of living that they cannot find in their home countries.

There are many sins that are not simply objectively sinful without proviso. That doesn't mean that we cannot sin in those areas...

5:46 PM  
Blogger Father Stephanos, O.S.B. said...

In Mexico, where a large percentage of our illegal immigrants come from, it is against the law for a foreign citizen to engage in public protests, and illegal immigrants in Mexico are classed as criminal felons, a gravity that the U.S. does not apply to illegal immigrants in the U.S.

It is an irony to have Mexican citizens publicly protesting here in the U.S. against policies which are more liberal than those of their homeland.

7:58 PM  
Blogger Jeff said...

Well, I'll defer to your expertise here on your blog! I enjoy hearing your views on this and all subjects.

8:57 PM  
Blogger Father Stephanos, O.S.B. said...

Jeff, I'm not an expert on this matter.

Your highlighting was useful. It is probable that we are not doing all that we can to be of charitable assistance.

My post's riginal intention was to clarify the nuances of the Church's statement.

11:14 AM  

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