Washington, DC–(ENEWSPF)–September 24, 2015. U.S. Senator Mark Kirk (R-Ill.) today issued the following statement after Pope Francis addressed a Joint Meeting of Congress:
“In the spirit of Abraham Lincoln, whom Pope Francis today called ‘the guardian of liberty,’ America symbolizes freedom and human dignity around the world. It is an honor to have Pope Francis, who is a symbol of love and compassion for more than a billion Catholics around the world and 3.8 million in Illinois, in the United States. May we take his message of unity and cooperation to heart.”
Senator Kirk’s guest for the Holy See’s address was Bishop Alberto Rojas, auxiliary bishop of the Archdiocese of Chicago. Bishop Rojas, a native of Mexico, is the Vicar for Vicariate III. He has served the Chicago community since his ordination in 1997 and was appointed bishop in 2011. Bishop Rojas has served as the Cardinal’s Liaison to Hispanic Catholics, the Archbishop’s delegate to the Consejo Pastoral Arquidiocesano Hispano-Americano, and a member of the Hispanic Affairs Committee and Catholic Home Missions committee for the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops. The Archdiocese of Chicago is the largest Catholic diocese in Illinois.
Senator Kirk also welcomed Raul Raymundo, co-chair of the Illinois Business Immigration Coalition and CEO of the Resurrection Project, to view the Pope’s address from the West Front of the Capitol. A devout Catholic, Raymundo came to the United States from Mexico when he was young, grew up on Chicago’s Southwest Side, and is an entrepreneur and an advocate for immigration reform. He also serves on the boards of Archdiocese Catholic Schools, Ounce of Prevention Fund, and National Association of Latino Asset Builders.