Society of the Divine Word Chicago Province • Techny, Illinois
Office of Education, Recruitment & Formation


March 2018 > Resources >
Immigration Resources


In 2003 the U.S. and Mexican Catholic Bishops' issued their Pastoral Letter Strangers No Longer in which they articulated five principles that govern how the Church responds to public policy proposals relating to immigration. In 2012 the Chicago Province issued their Chicago Province Corporate Stance on Immigration which follows those same, five principles:

• Persons have the right to find opportunities in their homeland.
• Persons have the right to migrate to support themselves and their  families.
• Sovereign nations have the right to control their borders.
• Refugees and asylum seekers should be afforded protection.
• The human dignity and human rights of undocumented migrants should be respected.

In 2015 the Chicago Province recommitted itself to the dignity of immigrants, including the undocumented, to immigration reform in the U.S.A.; and to all life issues.
(General Chapter Resolution #5: March 2015)



How Trump is Building a Border wall no one can see
Maria Sacchetti and Nick Miroff
The Washington Post

When you think of Trump’s border wall you naturally envision bricks and mortar. But, as Maria Sacchetti and Nick Miroll point out in their article for The Washington Post, the wall can be/is being built with bureaucracy. Revised regulations, enforced restrictions, simple government rhetoric are all, in their own way, adding brick upon brick to the wall. Read... 

Updated Statistics on Immigrants and Immigration in the U.S.
Jie Zong, Jeanne Batalova, and Jeffrey Hallock
Migration Policy Institute

The public conversation on immigration needs authoritative, unbiased and timely information. With that goal in mind, Migration Policy Institute (MPI) has released their latest findings on international migrants to the United States. The information presented in their report includes data on workforce characteristics, permanent immigration, immigration enforcement, naturalization trends, and more. Read... 

Why Border Patrol Agents can board a bus or train and ask if you're a citizen
Alexia Fernández Campbell

The Fourth Amendment gives Americans a certain right to privacy and protection from unreasonable government intrusions and searches. What most Americans don't realize is that near a U.S. border, the bar for what is considered a "reasonable" stop is far lower than for the rest of the country. Is that fair or, in fact, true? Alexia Campbell offers some insight into that question. Read... 

Last Month

Countering Anti-Immigrant Narratives
Catholic Legal Immigration Network, Inc. (CLINIC)

There are opportunities for you to combat anti-immigrant narratives. Catholic Legal Immigration Network, Inc. (CLINIC) offers a three-part guide that explains how legislative testimony, local media work, and social media can be used in the effort. Read...

Social Media vetting of immigrants
Manar Waheed
American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU)

Reporting in the ACLU’s blog Speak Freely, Manar Waheed points out that ‘In May, the government formally began the “extreme vetting” of certain visa applicants, asking for social media handles as part of the immigration process for applicants subjectively deemed suspect by immigration agents.’ Is the program working? Is it being administered fairly and justly…and securely? Read...

An historial view of becoming a citizen
Jessica Leigh Hester
Atlas Obscura

The New York Historical Society has put together a collection of personal stories, documents and artifacts that recount the process of becoming a U.S. citizen dating from 1715 to the 1950s. The collection gives a glimpse of the challenges faced by immigrants and the changing attitudes of the public—and politicians—on newcomers to our nation. Read...

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Administrative Relief

Government site which provides up-to-date information on the recent Administrative Relief. The agency is the Committee for Immigration Reform Implementation (CIRI).

Advocates for Human Rights, The

Non-profit organization dedicated to promoting and protecting human rights. Offers legal representation, medical and psychological evaluations, and interpretation and translation services.

America's Voice

The mission of America’s Voice (AV) and America’s Voice Education Fund (AVEF) is to harness the power of American voices and American values to enact policy change that guarantees full labor, civil and political rights for immigrants and their families. We work in partnership with progressive, faith-based, labor, civil rights, and grassroots groups, networks and leaders to policies and legislation that will stabilize the lives of 11 million Americans-in-waiting and put them on the road to full citizenship.

American Immigration Council

Non-profit educational, charitable organization which promotes the prosperity and cultural richness of our diverse nation through education and advocacy. Through research and policy analysis, litigation and communications, and international exchange, the Council seeks to shape a twenty-first century vision of the American immigrant experience.

American Immigration Lawyers Association (AILA)

AILA member attorneys represent U.S. families seeking permanent residence for close family members, as well as U.S. businesses seeking talent from the global marketplace. AILA members also represent foreign students, entertainers, athletes, and asylum seekers, often on a pro bono basis. They provide continuing legal education, information, professional services, and expertise.


ASISTA's goal is to provide national leadership, advocacy, training, and technical assistance to those working with crime survivors seeking secure immigration status, especially those who have suffered gender-based violence.

Border Network for Human Rights (BNHR)

The BNHR’s mission is to organize border communities through human rights education and to mobilize their members to ignite change in policy and practice. The BNHR has three ongoing campaigns -Comprehensive immigration reform; Accountable and responsible border policy; and Protection and Promotion of civil and human rights.

Bridging Refugee Youth & Children’s Services (BRYCS)

BRYCS strengthens the capacity of refugee-serving and mainstream organizations across the U.S. to ensure the successful development of refugee children, youth, and their families by increasing information sharing and promoting collaboration at the local, state, regional, and national levels.

Catholic Legal Immigration Network, Inc. (CLINIC)

CLINIC Promotes the dignity and protects the rights of immigrants in partnership with a dedicated network of Catholic and community legal immigration programs.


Provides online, interactive resources to help individuals apply for naturalization.

Commission on Immigration
American Bar Association

Directs the ABA's efforts to ensure fair treatment and full due process rights for immigrants and refugees within the United States. Pro bono programs operated by the Commission include Volunteer Advocates for Immigrant Justice (VAIJ), the South Texas Pro Bono Asylum Representation Project (ProBAR), the Immigration Justice Project (IJP) of San Diego, the Detention Standards Implementation Initiative (DSII), and the The Fight Notario Fraud (FNF) Project.

Connecting Our World

Connecting our World, sponsored by NAFSA, is a community of individuals raising their voices in support of international education and more globally engaged and welcoming United States. We advocate for policies that foster a more peaceful world, result in a commonsense immigration process, encourage enlightened global engagement, and sustain an informed civic culture through international education.

Hope Border Institute (HBI)

Hope Border Institute (HBI) is an independent grassroots community organization working in the El Paso-Ciudad Juárez-Las Cruces region, that seeks to bring the perspective of Catholic social teaching to bear on the social realities unique to our region. Through a robust program of research, reflection, leadership development, advocacy and action, HBI develops and aligns the border’s community leaders and organizations engaged in the work of justice from across the Mexico-US border to deepen solidarity across borders and transform our region.


Immi helps immigrants in the U.S. understand their legal options. Our online screening tool, legal information, and referrals to nonprofit legal services organizations are always free to use. Immi was created by the Immigration Advocates Network and Pro Bono Net, two nonprofit organizations dedicated to increasing access to justice for low-income immigrants.

Immigrant Legal Defense Project (ILD)
National Immigrant Justice Center

The National Immigrant Justice Center's Immigrant Legal Defense (ILD) project responds to the urgent need of immigrant families. The project offers a wide range of low-cost and free legal services to low-income immigrants in jurisdiction of the Chicago immigration court.

Immigrants' Rights Project
American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU)

Works to ensure that the U.S. government complies with universal human rights principles in addition to the U.S. Constitution. The Program uses human rights strategies to complement existing ACLU advocacy.

Immigration Advocates Network (IAN)

IAN is a collaborative effort of leading immigrants' rights organizations designed to increase access to justice for low-income immigrants and strengthen the capacity of organizations serving them. IAN provides immigration advocates and organizations free, easily accessible and comprehensive online resources and tools.

Immigration Direct

An on-line, easy-to-use, plain English, do-it-yourself service which allows users to prepare and complete their U.S. immigration applications. It is not affiliated with the U.S. government nor is it a law firm.

Immigration Legal Resource Center (ILRC)

The Immigrant Legal Resource Center is a national nonprofit resource center that provides immigration legal trainings, technical assistance, and educational materials; and engages in advocacy and immigrant civic engagement to advance immigrant rights. is a searchable online directory of over 1,000 free or low-cost nonprofit immigration legal services providers in all 50 states. Only nonprofits that are BIA recognized or have attorneys on staff are included in the directory. Users can search by state, zip code, or detention facility. Users can also refine their search by types and areas of legal assistance provided, populations served, languages spoken, other areas of legal assistance, and non-legal services provided.

Interfaith Immigration Coalition (IIC)

IIC is a faith-based organization of various denominations who work together towards enacting fair and humane immigration policies. The organization seeks to educate faith communities on the immigration issue and to advocate toward just legislation.

Justice for Immigrants (JFI)

This resource comes from United States Conference of Catholic Bishops and its purpose is to educate and inform Catholics about Church teaching on migration and immigrants. JFI also serves to create a political will toward positive legislation for immigrants and immigration policy.

Kino Border Initiative (KBI)

The Kino Border Initiative is an outreach program run by the Jesuits. Through its vision and outreach, KBI seeks to promote U.S./Mexico border immigration policies that affirm the dignity of all persons, especially our immigrant brothers and sisters who cross the desert. KBI provides humanitarian assistance and accompaniment to migrants as well as social and pastoral education to communities on both sides of the border.

Lutheran Immigration & Refugee Service (LIRS)

LIRS works with migrants and refugees, U.S. Lutherans, and many partners in service and justice to accomplish our mission. Refugees are resettled through a network of 28 local organizations in 26 states, most of which are Lutheran social ministry organizations. Sixteen of those organizations also provide immigration legal services. Asylum seekers, survivors of torture and other migrants impacted by detention are served through 23 partners providing legal and social services including visitation ministry. In addition, we work directly with eight foster care programs at the state level to provide family reunification and foster care services for unaccompanied refugee and immigrant minors.

Migration and Refugee Services
United States Conference of Catholic Bishops

Committee which carries out the commitment of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops to serve and advocate for refugees, asylees, and other forced migrants, immigrants, and other people on the move.

Migration Policy Institute (MPI)

Provides analysis, development, and evaluation of migration and refugee policies at the local, national, and international levels.

NAFSA: Association of International Educators

Nation's leading policy voice for international education and exchange.

National Immigration Law Center (NILC)

Offers educational materials to address issues of concern to low-income immigrants. Established in 1979, the National Immigration Law Center (NILC) is one of the leading organizations in the U.S. exclusively dedicated to defending and advancing the rights of low-income immigrants.

New Americans Campaign, The

The New Americans Campaign is a groundbreaking, nonpartisan national network of legal-service providers, faith-based organizations, businesses, foundations and community leaders that is paving a better road to citizenship. We are modernizing and streamlining access to naturalization services, so that greater numbers of lawfully qualified permanent residents take the critical step to becoming American citizens. We are currently driving a national, nonpartisan citizenship campaign throughout the country, focused on major cities with large numbers of citizenship-eligible residents.

Pro Bono Net

This site provides resources for pro bono and legal services attorneys and others working to assist low income or disadvantaged clients. Pro Bono Net is a national nonprofit, founded in 1999, dedicated to increasing access to justice for the disadvantaged. Through innovative technology solutions and expertise in building and mobilizing justice networks, Pro Bono Net transforms the way legal help reaches those in need.


Founded in 1982 and incorporated as an independent not-for-profit in 1992, RefugeeOne is a refugee resettlement agency that provides a full range of services to refugees resettled in the Chicago area. Their primary focus is to assist the refugee in becoming an independent, self-supporting member of the new community as soon as possible. RefugeeOne provides mentor teams, employment opportunities, and support systems to help.

Tucson Samaritans

Samaritans (formerly Samaritan Patrol) is an interfaith organization composed of people of faith who provide a compassionate and healing presence in the desert through humanitarian aid. They provide emergency medical assistance to migrants who cross the desert along the U.S./Mexico border. Samaritans is a mission of Southside Presbyterian Church.

Unaccompanied Children Resource Center

Provides training manuals, webinars and practice advisories to help nonprofit legal staff and pro bono attorneys represent children in proceedings. Also offers basic legal information on immigration law and procedure for the families and guardians of unaccompanied children. The site was launched in 2015 in response to the influx of unaccompanied immigrant children seeking refuge in the United States.

United We Dream

United We Dream (previously known as Own the DREAM) is the largest immigrant youth-led organization in the nation. Our powerful nonpartisan network is made up of over 100,000 immigrant youth and allies and 55 affiliate organizations in 26 states. We organize and advocate for the dignity and fair treatment of immigrant youth and families, regardless of immigration status.

Upwardly Global

There are more than 1.8 million immigrants in the U.S. (as of January 2017) who are college-educated but are unemployed or significantly underemployed. In their home countries they were engineers, doctors, scientists, accountants, and nonprofit professionals. In the U.S. they become cashiers, nannies, and cab drivers, if employed at all. To solve this problem Upwardly Global creates employer partnerships that benefit from access to this talent pool. We also provide customized training and support for these new Americans to give them an equal opportunity to find and secure skill appropriate opportunities and achieve their full economic potential in the U.S.

Welcoming America

A national, grassroots-driven collaborative that works to promote mutual respect and cooperation between foreign-born and U.S.-born Americans. The ultimate goal of Welcoming America is to create a welcoming atmosphere – community by community – in which immigrants are more likely to integrate into the social fabric of their adopted hometowns. Provides resources.


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Listings and links reviewed: March 2017


Office of Education, Recruitment & Formation
Society of the Divine Word   |   Chicago Province  |  1985 Waukegan Road  |  Techny, Illinois 60082  |  Tel: 847.272.2700