Erie Benedictines Arrested in D.C. Advocating for Dreamers
  Pictured: Benedictines for Peace members Tinamarie Stolz, Emmaus staff member Breanna Mekuly, Emmaus board member Anne McCarthy, OSB, Jacqueline Small, and regular Emmaus volunteer Sam Miller

On Tuesday, February 27, five members of the Erie Benedictine family - three of whom have direct connections to Emmaus Ministries - were arrested in Washington, DC as they called on Congress to advocate for immigrants.

Breanna Mekuly, Emmaus staff member, Sister Anne McCarthy, Emmaus board member, and Sam Miller, Emmaus volunteer participated in a Catholic Day of Action with Dreamers, which brought together over 200 Catholics from across the country, most of whom are sisters and other Catholic leaders. The Day of Action consisted of public prayer, a press conference calling for Congress to enforce a clean Dream Act and path to citizenship for DACA (Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals) recipients, and culminated in nonviolent civil disobedience.

"I've never been arrested before," said Emmaus staff member, Breanna Mekuly. "But I feel strongly about advocating for the human dignity of all people, especially the most marginalized. At this time, young adults in the DACA program are living in fear of being uprooted and separated from their families."

Members of Benedictines for Peace in Erie have participated in many different ways of calling Congress to support the Dreamers by organizing rallies, prayer vigils, call-ins, and more.

"When our traditional ways of contacting Congress and supporting the Dreamers were unsuccessful, participating in non-violent civil disobedience with Catholics from across the country made sense; it's time to disrupt the system and show our representatives that our Catholic faith demands we take action in unjust situations," Breanna continued.

Pictured: Benedictines for Peace members Tinamarie Stolz, Emmaus staff member Breanna Mekuly, Emmaus board member Anne McCarthy, OSB, Jacqueline Small, and regular Emmaus volunteer Sam Miller