Column: On accepting the nomination for vice president

by Fr. Pat Murphy, CS

It did not receive much fanfare and, in fact, it still has yet to come out in the press, so you will be the first to hear about it.

The news is now official, and I want our readers at The Leaven to know it first. So here it is: I have accepted the nomination to become vice president.

All right, I am not taking about being vice president of the United States, but rather the VP of another prestigious entity called the Immigrant Justice Advocacy Movement, or, as we like to call it, IJAM.

What is IJAM? Well, to put it simply, it is a multi-denominational faith-based community organization of clergy and laypeople seeking justice for immigrants. In fact, it is the only interfaith community organization in the KC metro area that focuses solely on immigration issues.

This is a great organization of caring people who are passionate about defending the rights of immigrants and actively advocating for a comprehensive immigration reform.

In one sense, the organization known as IJAM is brand-new. But in another sense, we have been around for a while, as a group of us have been meeting twice a month for the last 18 months, advocating for immigrant reform and seeking out ways to help immigrants in need.

In July, when IJAM became our official name, we embarked on a new path and have been trying to get as many people involved as possible. It has been a lot of hard work, but what can I say? I am proud to serve as the first vice president of IJAM.

Therefore to celebrate our birth and in order to build up the foundation of our organization, we are having our first-ever Awards Banquet and Benefit on Sept. 25 at 7 p.m. at the Village Presbyterian Church in Prairie Village. I am also happy to announce that our very own Archbishop Joseph F. Naumann will be the first recipient of the Voice of Faith for Immigrants Award.

It would be great to see a large contingent of supporters for Archbishop Naumann as he receives this award for speaking out on behalf of justice for immigrants. If you would like to join us for the big event, please feel free to call me at my office at (913) 282-6644 to reserve your place, as there are a limited number of tickets available for this event at $75 per person.

I am sure that Sept. 25 will be a great evening of delicious food and fantastic fun as we celebrate and honor some people who have walked the extra mile to advocate for immigrants. Just imagine all this — and, in addition, you might even get to shake the hand of the vice president on Sept. 25

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