NEW YORK (FOX 5 NEWS) - Pope Francis will reach out to immigrants during his visit to New York City. The pope is often urging Catholics to embrace immigrants and treat them with dignity. Catholic Charities runs a "DREAMers" program aimed at helping young immigrants dreaming of becoming U.S. citizens. Each year Catholic Charities secures temporary protection from deportation for hundreds of so-called DREAMers.
Hazel Bonilla will be the first in her family to go to college thanks to Catholic Charities. The organization is helping pay her tuition. She says going to college will be a dream come true. Hazel's family brought her to the United States 15 years ago to escape violence in El Salvador. She thinks she had it easy compared to immigrants now.
Monsignor Kevin Sullivan is executive director Catholic Charities in New York City. He says one of Catholic Charities main missions is to help immigrants adjust to life in the United States. The work that Catholic Charities does is close to the heart of Pope Francis. It is why the pontiff wants to meet some of the immigrants Catholic Charities helps during his visit to New York City.
Martha Pastor is from Mexico. Catholic Charities is helping her learn English. She is one of the lucky who will get to meet the pope in person.
Catholic Charities work helping refugees stay in this country has become controversial in this current political climate, which is something Monsignor Sullivan finds disturbing.