Thursday, August 21, 2008

Rhode Island's Roman Catholic bishop seeks to protect his illegal flock

Rhode Island’s Roman Catholic bishop is seeking an end to mass immigration sweeps in the state. At the same time, he wants to persuade individual Border Patrol agents to refuse to participate in raids ‘as a matter of conscience.’

Providence Bishop Thomas Tobin made the request in a letter to U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement. Signed by 15 priests, it urges individual ICE agents to consider the morality of their actions.

'If their discernment leads them to the conclusion that they cannot participate in such raids in good conscience, we urge them not to do so. If ICE agents refuse to participate in immigration raids in conformity with their faith and conscience, we urge the Federal Government to fully respect the well-founded principles of conscientious objection,' the letter said.

Tobin's request tries to suggest that raids are forcing immigration agents to choose between their jobs and their religious faith. Roman Catholics, legal or illegal, carry clout in Rhode Island, where 60 percent of the state’s population call themselves Roman Catholic.

The letter was sent in the middle of a heated debate over illegal immigration in Rhode Island. Authorities recently raided six Rhode Island courthouses and arrested 31 people, mainly Hispanic immigrants who are overwhelmingly Catholic. In a separate raid, ICE agents apprehended 42 suspected illegal immigrants in Newport and Middletown.


  1. Tobin should go into his prayer closet and not come out until he understands we are losing our nation to illegal immigration. These liberal, social activist clergy are a blot on society.

  2. Yes the communist minded priest should learn the Christian Bible--and wise up! People like this so called but not Christian priest are ruining this country!


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