WASHINGTON (March 22, 1999) -- Bishop Nicholas DiMarzio has named fourteen other Bishops as members of consultants to assist him as Chairman of the National Conference of Catholic Bishops Committee on Migration. The newly constituted 15-member committee will meet here for the first time today.
Bishop DiMarzio, who is an auxiliary bishop of Newark (NJ), was elected to a three-year term as Migration Committee Chairman at last November's meeting of the NCCB.
Four of the newly appointed Bishops will serve as full members of the Committee. They are Bishop Michael Driscoll of Boise (ID); Auxiliary Bishop Richard Garcia of Sacramento; Auxiliary Bishop John Manz of Chicago; and Auxiliary Bishop Thomas Wenski of Miami.
The other three appointees will serve as Consultants to the Committee. They are Auxiliary Bishop Robert Brucato of New York; Bishop Philip Straling of Reno (NV); Bishop Joseph Younan of Our Lady of Deliverance of Newark of the Syrians.
Members and consultants who will continue their service on the Committee are: Cardinal Adam Maida of Detroit; Bishop John Cummins of Oakland (CA), past Chairman; Archbishop Theodore E. McCarrick of Newark; Bishop Joseph Howze of Biloxi (MS); Auxiliary Bishop Peter Rosazza of Hartford; Bishop James Timlin of Scranton; and Bishop John Yanta of Amarillo.
The Bishops' Migration Committee sets broad policy and direction for the work of Church's work in the area of migration. The Committee oversees and provides guidance to the U. S. Catholic Conference's Migration and Refugee Services, which is comprised of four offices: Office for the Pastoral Care of Migrants and Refugees, Office of Migration and Refugee Policy, Office of Refugee Programs, and Office of the Executive Director.
MRS is the single largest private agency in the United States engaged in refugee resettlement. In 1998, Catholic organizations at the diocesan level, working with MRS, helped nearly 20,000 refugees to find homes and establish themselves in communities across the nation.
At their meeting, the Bishops will be establishing their policy priorities for the coming year, which will likely include such concerns as protections for agricultural guest workers, regularizing the status of certain Central Americans facing deportation, and ameliorating some of the harsh implications of the 1996 immigration reform legislation.