MULTICULTURAL MINISTRY MEETING
MARCH 12, 2017
Present: Eva Gonzalez, Margaret Retz, Marianne Mauldin, Fr. El Schwab, Sr. Phyllis Jaszkowiak, Leif Kehrwald, Barbara Hays
I. SOCIAL JUSTICE COMMITTEE
Margaret & Eva presented the following summary that was presented to Social Justice ministry.
1) St. Charles establish a phone number (available.24/hrs/day) for immediate help for ICE related emergencies.
Tentative Bulletin announcement:
"Immigration/ICE Raid Hotline. The Portland Immigrant Rights Coalition offers the following phone line in the Portland area and its surroundings: 1-888-622-1510. Call if you see an Immigration/ICE raid happening. They can help you defend your rights and give you referrals to services. St. Charles Church (503-281-6461) can also help but call the Hotline first."
2) List of legal referrals for help with immigration issues
3) Will the church help protect and care for the children if the parent(s) are detained/removed?
4) Support for other family needs:
- financial help with bills, health care, reuniting the kids with their deported family outside USA
- establish a fund or have fund raising events to help
- host a food drive; work with SVDP
5) SC Parish is working on additional ways to get help.
Eva has been attending immigration workshops and added that all the immigration issues seem to be moving fast, generating a lot of fear as people are trying to keep informed. They were told, having a Social Security # if you don’t have documents now is considered a criminal offense while before it was an offense. People are advised to only carry ID that is legal, have a plan, and a passport and a power of Attorney for their children . Also they are advised to pay taxes if they are working because in the future people who don't pay taxes will be targeted. Families are encouraged to practice at home what to do if immigration authorities come to their house. They do not have to let them enter unless they have a warrant signed by a judge.
Further discussion: Father El said that the Archdiocese has advised that parishes be careful using the word "sanctuary" as it can be understood in many different ways. However, no immigration agent is allowed on diocesan property for immigration questioning unless they have a warrant signed by a judge. St. Charles will continue to be safe haven/refuge and will accept anyone with that need.
Action taken: Flyers about the Immigration/ICE Raid hotline have been posted on St. Charles Church doors and the info will continue to run in the bulletin. Fernando Madrid will carry a cell phone with a Parish number for immigration emergencies (available 24 hr a day).
a) Margaret & Eva will ensure that the list of lawyers from the Latino network is included in the packets available at St. Charles.
b) Fr. El - call about Vietnamese resources or translations if needed (Our Lady of Lavang)
c) Parish meetings and information sessions:
1. Share the info on what we have done and are doing around immigration issues. Fr. El will share this at the conclusion of next Sunday's liturgy (Mayra or Fernando read it in Spanish). (Sr. Phyllis - ask Hoi to translate it to be read in Vietnamese)
2. Host an immigration workshop with presenters from EPHC El Programa Hispano Catholico, if they are available, after Mass on April 23 in the Parish Center. (Eva will call them)
3. Combine a parish meeting with the June 4 Pentecost celebration. Using the gospel about the disciples being terrified and learning to speak out...some of our people have experienced the same fear....People sharing their stories in Church/in the gym (Barbara, Sr. Phyllis, Eva attend the April Liturgy meeting to talk about the above idea.)
II. CONVERSATIONS WITH PARISH IMMIGRANT FAMILIES:
Multicultural members have informal conversations with parishioners about what they are experiencing in light of what is happening in our country around immigration issues and discrimination. Report key concerns heard at next MC meeting.
Sr. Phyllis : Social Justice: MACG had a lobby day at Salem about renters rights
St. Charles reps are attending the IMIRG co-hort mtg.
Fr. El: Eritrean Bishop is interested and eventually will celebrate a Mass at St. C. The hope is over time to have a mass celebrated in the language and custom of each Culture represented in our Parish.
Margaret brought an article from the Oregonian in which an undocumented student told her story of being protected under the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) and her fears if that is rescinded. She and others have initiated writing letters to Oregon representatives in Washington DC. They mailed 200 letters in purple envelopes, the color of hope. Though the campaign started with young people, It has grown to include people from races and citizenships. To submit your own letter, email firstname.lastname@example.org