WASHINGTON (CNS) — Politicians are probably some of the last people most Americans would send Valentine’s Day cards to, but that’s just what one parish in Washington did, as a group of members from Holy Trinity Catholic Church delivered hundreds of cards to lawmakers, urging them to “love your neighbor” and support migrants and refugees.
Following a morning Mass Feb. 14, a small parish group, with ashes still smudged on their foreheads, set off for Capitol Hill, dropping off more than 200 Valentine’s Day cards to their local lawmakers as well as to politicians from throughout the country.
The activity was part of an Valentine’s Day effort by the Ohio-based Ignatian Solidarity Network, which collected signatures from Jesuit universities, parishes and organizations, from around the U.S.
“The Valentines arrive to Capitol Hill as U.S. senators debate immigration proposals, including a solution for Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) recipients, offered by President Trump as well Senate members of both parties,” said the network in news release.
The message inside the cards read: “Roses are red, Violets are blue. Our faith teaches us to love our neighbor, you should too.”
“While Valentine’s Day is often a chance to celebrate one’s love for that special someone, it is a good time to also consider how we as a country show our love for our neighbors, including immigrant and refugee members of our communities,” said Christopher Kerr, the organization’s executive director in a Feb. 13 statement.
Kate Tromble, pastoral associate for social justice at Holy Trinity, said most “were very thankful” to receive the cards. Some included personal messages from parishioners in many cases thanking their local lawmakers for their support of immigrants.
“We wanted them to know how to thankful we are,” to those who have voted for legislation protecting migrants, she said.
Ash Wednesday and Valentine’s Day coinciding this year elevated the Ignatian message of loving and not counting the cost, said Tromble, referencing a prayer attributed to St. Ignatius of Loyola, founder of the Society of Jesus, popularly known as the Jesuits.
The cards also were given to lawmakers “who are less supportive of opening doors to migrants,” she said.
“We wanted them to know protecting the migrant is part of our faith,” Tromble said.