Washington DC: Dozens arrested in #CatholicDayOfAction

  • Jo Siedlecka

Religious stand with pictures of some of the child migrants who have died.  image: Twitter

Religious stand with pictures of some of the child migrants who have died. image: Twitter

At least 70 Catholics, including a 90 year-old nun, were arrested in Washington DC yesterday, as they took part in a prayer vigil and protest against the Trump administration's harsh treatment of migrants and asylum seekers.

Protesters first gathered in the morning on the lawn of the US Capitol where they prayed and heard speeches. Groups then processed into the Russell Senate Office Building on Capitol Hill praying, singing hymns and carrying photographs of children who had died in US custody. Names of the children were read out one by one.

Several protesters lay on the floor of of the building in the shape of a cross. Around that time the arrests began.

One of the protestors, Marissa J Lang, tweeted: "Police are arresting these nuns one by one, as they recite the Lord's Prayer, which is echoing off the marble walls of the Russell Rotunda here in #DC. About 50 senators have offices in this building."

"Watch here as Sister Pat Murphy, 90, is arrested and led out. Sister Pat works with migrants and refugees in Chicago, and has been holding a weekly vigil outside ICE there for 13 years. She says the treatment of migrants should outrage all people of faith."

Among those arrested was Fr William Critchley-Menor, SJ, Fr Tom Reece SJ, and Dominican Sister Elise Garcia.

Catholic members of Congress, Sen Richard Durbin, Rep Thomas Suozzi and Sen Tim Kaine showed their support by joining the crowds.

Groups taking part included: Bon Secours Sisters, Columban Center for Advocacy and Outreach, Conference of Major Superiors of Men, Dominican Sisters of Grand Rapids, Faith in Action, Faith in Public Life, Franciscan Action Network, Ignatian Solidarity Network, Jesuit Conference of Canada and the United States - Office of Justice and Ecology, Leadership Conference of Women Religious, Maryknoll Office for Global Concerns, NETWORK Lobby for Catholic Social Justice, Pax Christi USA, Sisters of the Good Shepherd National Advocacy Center, Sisters of Mercy of the Americas, and Stuart Center: Society of the Sacred Heart.

At least seven Catholic bishops from around the country published messages of support.

More reports to come on ICN.

Tags: Mexico, Immigrant, Detention, Pax Christi, Columbans, Washington DC, #CatholicDayOfAction

We Need Your Support

ICN aims to provide speedy and accurate news coverage of all subjects of interest to Catholics and the wider Christian community. As our audience increases - so do our costs. We need your help to continue this work.

Please support our journalism by donating today.