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CMS Visits KBI !

From May 29th to June 1st, CMS staff members traveled to the U.S.-Mexico border to visit the Jesuit-run Kino Border  Initiative (KBI).                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                   

Building upon previous dialogue between the two organizations, the CMS team made this trip for the purpose of learning first-hand about the reality of migration at the border and showing solidarity with those who struggle for immigrants’ rights in this critical area.

CMS staff in desert SAM_3431(1)

KBI Director of Education West Cosgrove leads CMS staff members through the desert frequented by migrants crossing the border.

20140530_090635(1) artifacts

On their perilous journey migrants who cross the U.S. -Mexican boarder on their way North leave behind bibles, rosaries, and other personal possessions.

 Over three days, CMS staff met with an immigrant family seeking sanctuary at Tuscon church, observed the mass sentencing of immigrants through Operation Streamline at the U.S District Court in Tucson, AZ, walked through a portion of the desert where migrants risked their lives in an effort to reach the United States, volunteered at a “comedor” (soup kitchen) in Nogales, Mexico where KBI staff fed hundreds of migrants and deportees every day, met with women migrants staying at the KBI shelter in Nogales, and visited the home of a woman who organized the first labor union in the “maquiladoras”(foreign-owned factories) in Nogales, Mexico.

SAM_3513(1) photo memorial

16 year old Jose Antonio Elena Rodriguez was shot and killed by U.S Border Patrol on October 10, 2013. This memorial was erected in order to memorialize his death.

Altogether, this trip deepened CMS’ connection to the migration experience. So many of our clients have undertaken perilous journeys through the desert and other places to seek a better life and to reunite with family in the U.S. At this moment, we are serving an increasing number of unaccompanied minors who have made such voyages before arriving to New York City. Through our collaboration with KBI, we have a stronger appreciation for our clients’ struggles and greater resolve to continue our work for justice.

CMS staff lunches 20140529_145217(1)

CMS staff members eat lunch and discuss the transformative journey they have experienced.

For more information about KBI click here .

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