Papal nuncio meets bishops to discuss immigrants’ plight

SAN JUAN — Border bishops from Mexico and the United States addressed the needs of immigrants Tuesday night amid a growing anti-foreigner movement in the United States.

Catholic leaders from Brownsville to Los Angeles and Matamoros to Ciudad Juarez, Mexico, gathered for a three-day conference beginning Monday night to discuss immigration with the nation’s highest papal diplomat, the apostolic nuncio to the United States, Archbishop Christophe Pierre.

Pierre, who serves as the pope’s eyes and ears in the United States, spent much of his time Tuesday touring immigration facilities and speaking to law enforcement officers, as well as immigrant advocates and representatives from the consulates of Mexico, Guatemala, Honduras and El Salvador.

The nuncio’s visit comes at a time when much of the national conversation is focused on border security — including a recent travel ban that was temporarily stuck down by a federal judge — a push by President Donald Trump to build a border wall, and the deportation of more than 600 people in recent raids across the country.

Pierre, 71, also toured a detention center in McAllen and visited the Sacred Heart Humanitarian Respite Center, where he blessed Mynor Miguel Antonio, 18. Antonio was one of about five immigrants at the respite center after authorities released him from a detention center Tuesday morning.

“I turned 18 today, so they let me go,” Antonio said.

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