EXCLUSIVE: Texas nuns are helping illegal immigrants buy bus tickets to get across the US after they sneaked past the border as Catholic Church resists Trump’s immigration crackdown

Friday, February 9, 2018
By Paul Martin

Catholic Charities of the Rio Grande Valley in McAllen, Texas, are aiding undocumented immigrants by helping them buy bus tickets
The migrants had all been apprehended trying to get into the United States illegally, detained, then been released to attend court at a later date
This ‘catch and release’ system was condemned as ‘stupid’ by President Donald Trump on Tuesday as he strives for tougher immigration policies
Catholic Charities of the Rio Grande Valley got involved in 2014 because they thought it was a humanitarian crisis and Pope Francis commended them in 2015
Nuns give the undocumented immigrants food, a place to sleep and help them purchase bus tickets to get to their final destination in the US

By Daniel Bates
DailyMail.com
9 February 2018

It is a desperate scene that is repeated every afternoon at the bus station in McAllen, Texas.

White buses with bars on the inside of the windows pull up and between 100 and 400 tired and hungry migrants disembark.

They have all been apprehended trying to get into the United States illegally, detained, then released to attend court at a later date – a ‘catch and release’ system condemned as ‘stupid’ by President Donald Trump on Tuesday.

At the bus station they are met by volunteers from Sacred Heart refuge run by Catholic Charities of the Rio Grande Valley who escort them to their center three blocks away.

Catholic Charities of the Rio Grande Valley started meeting the migrants at the bus station in 2014 because they considered it to be a humanitarian crisis arriving every day on their doorstep.

But their actions, which have been praised by Pope Francis, are at odds with the Trump administration’s hard-line approach to immigration.

In an interview with DailyMail.com Daniel Flores, the Bishop of Brownsville who represents 1.2 million Catholics and is head of its charities in South Texas, said that he disagreed with Trump’s approach.

He asked the president to tone down his rhetoric and warned him against the human ‘capacity we have to simply not want to see’.

Bishop Flores said: ‘Jesus didn’t ask us to check what papers they had, Jesus asked us to check: are they hungry, are they thirsty, do they need a place to stay?’

DailyMail.com understands that the buses that arrive each day in McAllen are arranged by Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE).

Migrants who were a threat to public safety and national security would be far more likely to remain in custody, but a lack of space means that not everyone can be held.

The rest are taken in by Sacred Heart where such matters are forgotten and everyone is welcome, regardless of their background.

On a Monday in January the new arrivals, who had mostly come thousands of miles from Guatemala and Honduras, were given a bowl of chicken soup, which for many was their first meal in days.

The Rest…HERE

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