From our founding with German immigrants in 1876, to our patronage of St. Joseph, a man who was no stranger to flight and exile, to the current composition of our parish with parishioners from many countries in many different immigration circumstances, to the longstanding Judeo-Christian focus on compassion for those in flight, there’s plenty of good reasons for us to participate in National Migration Week Sept. 20-26.
Besides sprinkling our prayers, homilies and music with migration themes, we are offering two talks, after our 7pm evening Masses Sept. 20-21, to provide a practical and specific local focus to the week.
Monday, Sept. 20 at 7:30pm: Jarteau Israel, Immigration Program Coordinator LANBI Center for Humanities and Civics, Inc., will speak on the financial and parental rights of individuals in the face of deportation. Getting deported doesn’t mean you have to leave your hard-earned money and children behind. Before anything one should consider whether they can access their bank account in their home country, or if it would be easier to close it. If not, they should consider Powers of Attorney. Mr. Israel was the director of Immigration Services in the Diocese of Metuchen for many years.
Tuesday, Sept. 21 at 7:30pm: Nicholas Krochta, parishioner and attorney, will speak about workplace injuries and workers’ rights, no matter whether they are documented or undocumented. Born and raised in Raritan, NJ, Mr. Krochta enjoyed the benefits of a Jesuit education at the University of Scranton ( Scranton PA ) and the Loyola University School of Law ( New Orleans, LA ).
He has practiced as a New Jersey attorney in the field of Workers Compensation for more than 30 years, working to obtain all the benefits allowed by NJ Workers Compensation Law for all clients. He presently resides in Bound Brook with wife Esther, having married in St. Joseph’s Catholic Church 40 years ago.
And really, the following night, Wednesday, Sept. 22, although it’s part of a separate series, Bridgette Perez’ presentation on mental health will be of great value for those with immigration challenges who are also experiencing mental health challenges.
If these topics are not pertinent to your circumstances, please take a moment to reflect and see if some of your contracted vendors, friends or family members may benefit.