Pat Murphy and JoAnn Persch

Sisters of Mercy

Over the past 45 years Sister Pat Murphy's and Sister JoAnn Persch's work together in Chicago has focused on the rights and needs of immigrants, refugees, older persons, and families who are homeless. In Band of Sisters we see them still going strong, trying to get a bill passed through the Illinois legislature that would ensure pastoral care for immigrant detainees. Amid a nonstop schedule of meetings, lobbying, vigils, and rallies, they visit twice a week with prisoners awaiting trial and deportation, offering a compassionate presence to each person in the few minutes they are allowed. Knowing that they might not be able to keep this up much longer, they are drawing together people of all ages and faiths to carry on their ministry, and holding out hope for an end to the U.S. immigration policies they label "demonic." Some of the groups with whom Pat and JoAnn work: Interfaith Committe for Detained Immigrants, Sisters and Brothers of Immigrants, Illinois Coalition for Immigrant and Refugee Rights, Chicago New Sanctuary Coalition

The Sisters