Catholic priests group meets with Poplar Bluff man fearing deportation

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MAPLEWOOD, Mo. – Hundreds of Catholic priests from all over the country were in St. Louis for a convention Tuesday. But a dozen of them are also fighting for what they said is justice for illegal immigrants.

About 50 members from the Association of US Catholic Priests got to meet Alex García, a Poplar Bluff man who has been facing deportation back to Honduras. Part of their mission is to advocate for immigration reform throughout the country.

García has been in the country illegally for 16 years but the Christ Church UCC in Maplewood has been serving as a sanctuary for García for the last year and a half.

“It’s to try and help do something about the broken immigration system in our country,” said Father Louis Arceneaux. “And Alex García is in a way a symbol of it, he’s a human being. We as an association want to make a statement not only about him but about the need for immigration reform throughout the United States and throughout the world really.”

“We must never forget that our country upholds great principles of respect for life,” said Sister Norma Pimentel, Catholic Charities of Rio Grande Valley. “We must not put aside or discard people just because they’re immigrants or because they are fighting for their life.”

García declined to speak on camera but his wife told FOX 2 that so far there hasn’t been much progress or movement regarding his immigration status.

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