Aleteia logoAleteia logo
Aleteia
Tuesday 20 April |

Pregnant mother facing deportation seeks sanctuary in Catholic mission—UPDATED

Deacon Greg Kandra - published on 08/02/15

sl-1

From the Atlanta Journal Constitution: 

A pregnant El Salvadorian woman who has been ordered deported for illegally entering the U.S. has fled to an Atlanta-area Catholic mission, where she is seeking sanctuary with her two young children. Claudia Mariela Jurado recently cut off the electronic monitoring bracelet immigration authorities had attached to her ankle. She absconded after she was asked to report to them Friday for her removal. Now living in a converted office at Our Lady of the Americas Catholic Mission in Lilburn, Jurado said she left El Salvador because a gang extorted money from her there. A Catholic, she said she will stay at the mission until “God decides” otherwise. “I’m afraid for my life,” she said through an interpreter Sunday about the possibility of returning to her native country. U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s policy says the agency generally does not pursue people in sensitive areas like churches unless there are special circumstances, such as public safety threats. The agency released a statement about Jurado’s case, saying she “has been afforded full due process in compliance with federal law and ICE policy.”

Read more. 

UPDATE: The Archdiocese of Atlanta is stepping in. Details: 

The Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Atlanta on Tuesday said a Catholic mission in Lilburn will help a pregnant El Salvadorian woman seeking sanctuary there but will “not be a long-term solution.” Claudia Mariela Jurado fled to the Our Lady of the Americas Catholic Mission with her two young children Friday after federal immigration authorities requested she appear in Atlanta to be deported for illegally entering the country. Using a pair of garden shears, she recently cut off the electronic monitoring bracelet immigration authorities had attached to her ankle. Now living in a converted office at the mission, Jurado said she left El Salvador because a gang extorted money from her there. “To the best of our knowledge, this is the first time someone has attempted to claim sanctuary in one of our Catholic churches,” Paula Gwynn Grant, a spokeswoman for the archdiocese, said in a prepared statement Tuesday afternoon. “Our Lady of the Americas Mission will provide assistance to the extent that the law and their very limited resources allow, mindful that the mission is not a long-term solution.”
Support Aleteia!

If you’re reading this article, it’s thanks to the generosity of people like you, who have made Aleteia possible.

Here are some numbers:

  • 20 million users around the world read Aleteia.org every month
  • Aleteia is published every day in seven languages: English, French, Italian, Spanish, Portuguese, Polish, and Slovenian
  • Each month, readers view more than 50 million pages
  • Nearly 4 million people follow Aleteia on social media
  • Each month, we publish 2,450 articles and around 40 videos
  • We have 60 full time staff and approximately 400 collaborators (writers, translators, photographers, etc.)

As you can imagine, these numbers represent a lot of work. We need you.

Support Aleteia with as little as $1. It only takes a minute. Thank you!

Top 10
1
SPANISH FLU
Bret Thoman, OFS
What Padre Pio saw in the Spanish Flu of 1918
2
EUCHARIST
Philip Kosloski
5 Fascinating facts about Jesus in the Eucharist
3
MASS
Philip Kosloski
5 Essential things used at Mass and their symbolism
4
PADRE PIO
Philip Kosloski
Padre Pio’s favorite prayer of petition
5
COUPLE
Cerith Gardiner
7 Joys to be had from a lengthy marriage
6
OSORNO
Brett Salkeld
How to vaccinate like a Catholic
7
PRINCE PHILIP
Cerith Gardiner
The lasting lesson from the late Prince Philip
See More