From ........... National Catholic Reporter

December 8, 1995

page 7



Los Angeles Cardinal Roger M. Mahony and the presidents of two [Roman] Catholic health organizations praised a federal judge's decision overturning much of California's Proposition 187.

U.S. District Judge Mariana Pfaelzer ruled Nov.20 that the voter-approved initiative prohibiting illegal immigrants from receiving tax-supported benefits conflicts with federal law.

The decision also said the state could legally stop spending its own money for education and health care for illegal immigrants, though legal observers said the division of federal and state funds would be difficult to determine.

The state attorney general's office said the ruling would be appealed.

He said the ruling is correct in highlighting the nation's common constitutional guarantees, and that "no matter how many people vote for an improper ballot measure, the Constitution must prevail."


The National Association of Hispanic Priests has reiterated its longstanding opposition to pending immigration legislation.

Meeting in Orlando, Fla., in October, the organization approved a resolution opposing bills that would limit the rights of legal immigrants, curtail several categories of family immigration and end natural citizenship for children born in the United States to noncitizen parents.

Laws being considered in Congress "would gravely violate the most basic human rights of immigrants," said the declaration.

A group of Hispanic evangelical leaders has also decried the "anti-immigration spirit" in the United States at a recent gathering in Long Beach, Calif.

"As Christians we are told by scripture ..... that we should open our door compassionately to the stranger and to the needy," said the Rev. Jesse Miranda, president of AMEN, the Alianza de Ministerios Evangelicos Nacionales. "Unanimously, there was a vote that we speak against the trend and the spirit of anti-immigration."