Current Actions

3/4/20 – Faith4DACA Petition

Approximately 700,000 DACA-recipients anxiously await the Supreme Court’s decision—expected sometime between April and the end of this summer. We are calling for the senate chamber to finally act to protect Dreamers, something which they must do ahead of the decision. As faith organizations, please help us collect enough signatures to show the members of the senate that the faith community is united in its support for protections for Dreamers that do not come at the expense of the rest of the immigrant population. We must be faithful to the principles and values that we share as immigration advocates united in our love for thy neighbor.  Sign the petition here.

3/4/20 – Nuclear Weapons Abolition

Help Us Build the Petitions Presentation at Rally’s End

Our April 24-26 World Conference and rally will culminate with the presentation of more than 10 million petition signatures urging nuclear weapons abolition. The petition—initiated by Japanese and Korean A-bomb survivors—and signatures will be presented to the U.N. High Representative for Disarmament Izumi Nakamitsu and NPT Review President Ambassador Gustavo Zlauvinen.

Please help us to build this important expression of people’s will and power by signing the petition and encouraging your friends and people in organizations you are associated with to sign it as well.  You can sign the Appeal online: https://hibakusha-appeal.net/english/, or if you prefer printing the form and asking people to sign on paper, you can download the form here: https://hibakusha-appeal.net/wp-content/uploads/2018/11/shomei-english.pdf.

3/4/20- Break Free from Plastics Act

It’s great when consumers take responsibility for using less plastic and for cleaning up plastic waste in their communities. But wouldn’t it be better if the corporations that put all that plastic into the marketplace and the environment had to take responsibility for cleaning it up?

Plastic waste—most of it from single-use, processed food and drink packaging—contaminates our drinking water, soil, air and waterways, including the deepest parts of the ocean. The Break Free from Plastics Act of 2020 aims to curb plastics pollution by shifting the responsibility from consumers to the companies that produce plastic.

The bill, introduced by Sen. Tom Udall (D-N.M.) and Rep. Alan Lowenthal (D-Calif.), would hold major plastic polluters, such as Nestlé, PepsiCo, and Coca-Cola, accountable for their pollution by requiring them to finance waste and recycling programs. The Break Free from Plastics Act would also place an all-out ban on certain single-use plastics that are non-recyclable and prohibit plastic waste from being shipped overseas to developing countries.

Plastic pollution is so rampant in our oceans that scientists predict the sea will contain more plastic than fish by the year 2050. It also pollutes soil and freshwater. Tiny bits of plastic or microplastic are contaminating humans, too. The average person eats at least 50,000 particles of microplastic each year—and we inhale a similar amount—studies show.

Consumers should shop responsibly, sure. But it’s time we held the biggest plastic polluters responsible for the damage they cause to the environment and human health.

TAKE ACTION! Tell Congress to Hold Plastic Polluters Accountable by Supporting the Break Free From Plastic Pollution Act of 2020!

2/10/20 – “Remain in Mexico” Policy Cruel and Inhumane

On January 27, 2018, the Trump Administration began to implement the “Migrant Protection Protocol,” known as the “Remain in Mexico” policy.  Rather than protect migrants, it empowers immigration officials to return thousands of asylum seekers at southern border entry points to Mexico while their cases are decided by the U.S. immigration court system.

Hope Border Institute, a Catholic organization in El Paso, Texas, recently reported that close to 60,000 migrants, most from Central American countries, and 25 % of whom were children and infants, were returned in 2019.  About 20,000 of these migrants were returned through El Paso.  Migrants have been subjected to robbery, assault, trafficking, kidnapping and murder.  Access to legal counsel is very limited, a violation of due process.  In January, a 7th entry point, at Nogales, Arizona, was closed to asylum seekers under MPP.

The U.S. Catholic Bishops and interfaith and human rights organizations call on the administration to end MPP and urge Congress to defund the program.  El Paso Bishop Mark Seitz recently issued a statement on the expansion of MPP to Brazil, whose people do not even speak Spanish, making them even more vulnerable to criminal activity and exploitation.  Franciscan Action Network, of which the Sisters of St. Francis of Philadelphia, is a member, has issued statements opposing the policy and participated in an interfaith vigil near the Capitol on the one year anniversary of this cruel policy. Learn more

Immigration – Separation of Families

The Sisters of St. Francis are members of Leadership Conference of Women Religious (LCWR) and stand behind the statement of Sr. Teresa Maya, CCVI, President of LCWR, issued the following statement to the press:

“As women of faith, as Catholic sisters, we strongly oppose the Trump administration’s decision to forcibly separate parents from their children in an effort to punish families seeking safety and in the United States.

Mothers and fathers are taking tremendous risks to bring their children to safety. These are families fleeing violence and death in their home countries. They have every right to ask for protection in the United States and the Trump administration is legally and morally obligated to give them a fair chance to seek asylum.

It is impossible to imagine the fear of a child being ripped from the arms of her mother or the pain of a father watching a stranger take his son. It is cruel and inhumane and it must stop. Our faith demands it and our national values require it. We are better than this.”

Ongoing Efforts

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Franciscan Action Network

Transforming the world in the spirit of St. Francis and St. Clare. Read more >>


LCWR’s Immigration Coalition

Our congregation recently signed LCWR’s Immigration Coalition’s “Appeal to the Catholic Church to Recommit to the Centrality of Gospel Nonviolence.”  To learn more about the appeal and to sign the endorsement, click here.