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Irish Bishops launch campaign to support emigrants

To coincide with St Patrick's Day, the Irish Bishops' Commission for Emigrants has launched its "Supporting Irish Abroad" (SIA) campaign.

The Commission reaches out to Irish living in various countries including Australia, where it has a full-time chaplain to the Irish community in Sydney. But the focus of its campaign this year is the plight of the undocumented Irish living in the US, and the difficulties that they face in regularising their status.

Launching the 2005 campaign, Commission Chair, Bishop of Derry Dr Sťamus Hegarty said: "We are currently working with the Migration and Refugee Service of the United States Catholic Conference of Bishops. The US bishops have initiated a campaign calling for immigration reform and this is based on the principles set out in their pastoral letter Strangers no Longer: Together on the Journey of Hope, which was jointly published with the bishops of Mexico in 2003."

Bishop Hegarty announced his intention to travel to the US to visit Irish immigrant pastoral centres, and to meet with our chaplains and those working with Irish people.

The Irish Bishops' Conference established a dedicated service in 1957 the Irish Episcopal Commission for Emigrants (IECE) to help co-ordinate support for Irish emigrants in the UK. Since that time outreach chaplaincy centres have been established in Europe, the USA and Australia.

Ireland: Bishops launch campaign to support Irish abroad (Independent Catholic News 14/3/05)

LINKS (not necessarily endorsed by Church Resources)
Catholic Communications Ireland | Bishops launch awareness campaign for undocumented Irish in USA (13/3/05)

St Patrick's Day birthday celebrations (Archdiocese of Adelaide)
Irish doctors call for cut in pub opening hours (The Universe 15/3/05)
Archbishop welcomes 'New Irish' at St Patrick's Day Mass ( 16/3/05)
Top of the mornin' to ya! (The Mercury 17/3/05)
It's time to paint the town green, to be sure (Bathurst Western Advocate)
Irish leader discounts St. Patrick's Day snubs in U.S. (Associated Press/The Plain Dealer 15/3/05)
Kennedy snub adds chill to Adams's visit (Irish Echo)
St. Patrick's Day at the Pubs (Washington Post 14/3/05)
Irish bishops seek help for emigrants living in US (Catholic World News 14/3/05)
Undocumented Irish in U.S. Get Bishops' Attention (Zenit 13/3/05)

17 Mar 2005