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2 LDS branch presidents in Utah deported to Guatemala, El Salvador

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  • ComSen1 Sandy, UT
    June 14, 2011 5:47 p.m.

    Latino community activist Tony Yapias said it was his understanding that Callejas-Hernandez . . . had not committed any crimes.

    "We'd have a much better system, much better control, if we were able to legalize a lot more of the people who are already here."

    That's perfect double-talk.

    His statement "if we were able to legalize" confirms the fact that Mr. Yapias realizes they had, indeed, committed a crime.

  • RRB SLC, UT
    June 14, 2011 5:52 p.m.

    Obviously being here illegally shows they did break the law. And those that continue to encourage it are breaking the law also.

  • MormonDem Provo, UT
    June 14, 2011 6:22 p.m.

    ComSen1's and RRB's comments perfectly demonstrate the tautological thinking on the right on this issue. This issue centers on the fact that the laws as they now stand do not square with the economic or moral reality of the situation. Consequently, enforcement-only approaches are inadequate because they involve the enforcement of laws that do not square with the economic or moral reality of the situation. So, we talk about crafting the laws in a way that does address those realities. We talk about whether or not certain things should or should not be criminalized. Yet the right seems to only be able to think in the simplistic terms of enforce or not enforce, rather than address the core issue of crafting the laws that are to be enforced.

    As Elder Marlin Jensen put it a while back, it's futile to complain about broken laws when the laws themselves are inherently "broken," i.e., inadequate.

  • The Deuce Livermore, CA
    June 14, 2011 6:24 p.m.

    First of all, as a non-member of the LDS faith, I am amazed that this individual would be in a leadership position with the LDS church when they knew he was not in the country legally. It was my understanding the LDS Church supports the law of the land and emphasizes this to their congregations. Please correct me if I am wrong on this. Second, to be in a leadership position would he not have had to reveal this fact to those who interviewed him for this position? These examples continue to emphasize the point that immigration must be done through legal channels. If this had been done, this family would not be in this situation. It is not right to complain about a situation you are in when you created the problem in the first place. I feel for the family but this was a gamble in the first place to come into this country illegally and think that all is well.

  • Timj South Jordan, UT
    June 14, 2011 6:40 p.m.

    I am impressed that the church is printing articles about this. I think the publication of stories like this will open members eyes to the realities facing families and individuals, including church leaders, because of our inadequate immigration laws. Hopefully those capable of feeling sympathy and compassion will realize our laws need to change, and these people need to be given a chance to continue living here legally.

  • hamberg Salt Lake City, UT
    June 14, 2011 6:46 p.m.

    The LDS Church won't let have a man that is behind on his child support have a temple recommend but will let an illegal alien be a Branch President. What is wrong with this picture?

    Sorry but church leaders are wrong here as they have an obligation to support the laws of the United States as this is church doctrine. If the Stake President knew those people were illegal then that Stake President needs to be released. As well as those General Authorities that knew as well.

    Problem is that members of the church have become too cowardly and will not raise their hands to oppose when they have an ethic obligation to do so. If a bishop called Adolf Hitler to a calling you would still have everybody raising their hands to sustain that calling. Sorry that's morally wrong.

  • OlpuebloguyInWyo Evanston, WY
    June 14, 2011 6:55 p.m.

    I wonder if there is a statute of limitations? Seems like there is many more serious crimes that do. Reforms must be made sooner than later

  • Cache Valley Native PROVO, UT
    June 14, 2011 6:57 p.m.

    I have been following the story of the Carias's since 2006, and I feel like some of the commenters may have jumped to some conclusions.

    In the April 13, 2006 Herald Journal article entitled "Deportation imminent", it says,
    "Carias moved to Utah in the mid-1990s from Guatemala to help his ailing father and to bring his family to better living conditions. In 1997, he started the process of becoming a permanent, legal U.S. resident, but several years of misfiled papers, an ill judge and an attorney who did nothing for Carias 8 and was later disbarred resulted in Carias case file being closed."

    From what I read in this article and what I know of the Carias's personally, I feel they have done all in their power to obey the law. I am sad to see that this story had a sad ending after all. I wish him and his family well.

  • Rod Provo, UT
    June 14, 2011 7:04 p.m.

    Come on now. Whether a law is good or bad is up to the courts to decide. As individuals we may disagree with a law but it is still the law. You may feel that a particular law is bad and I may feel that it is good... which one of us is right? We can't, and must not, take the law into our own hands. Let the lawmakers and the courts decide. If you don't like a law, get involved. Campaign for something different. You don't have a moral or legal right to break the law just because you don't like it.

  • RRB SLC, UT
    June 14, 2011 7:08 p.m.

    Enforce the laws, and the problem is solved. Make excuses for not enforcing the laws, and the problems continue.

    The Supreme court of this country just gave states the right to enforce immigration laws in certain areas. Let's become an honest and moral country again and start doing it. Situations like this need to be stopped, and the only way for that to happen is for enforcement and a call for honesty from those encouraging it.

    We have not seen the nationwide call from the pro-illegal groups for people to stop immigrating illegally, until that happens, and there is a deterrent for those tempted, the problem will build.

    We can bury our heads in the sand, and hope the Federal government will approve our illegal business orientated law that creates a second class, or we can tackle the problem honestly.

  • RRB SLC, UT
    June 14, 2011 7:10 p.m.

    Laws are good, it's the dishonest people that need reforming.

  • No One Of Consequence West Jordan, UT
    June 14, 2011 7:30 p.m.

    'Yapias said the deportation of law-abiding people is "devastating" to families.'

    I imagine it would be devastating were they deporting law-abiding people.

    If you repeat an untruth enough times it does not become true but it becomes believed.

    I feel bad for the family, but I have to ask, "What were you thinking?"

  • LiberalismISaMentalDisorder Peoria, AZ
    June 14, 2011 7:31 p.m.

    It's amazing how illegal immigrants can hold positions of leadership in the church or even hold a temple recommend for that matter. i guess being honest in all your dealings isn't relevant any longer

  • RRB SLC, UT
    June 14, 2011 7:36 p.m.

    I read the Callejas-Hernandez article on another publication, then I found his court of appeals documents from 2009 (available on the Internet).

    It found that his attorney was not responsible for him missing his hearing. His lawyer was found competent when it was discovered that Mr. Callejas-Hernandez lost his notice of hearing.

  • Bruce Angleton, TX
    June 14, 2011 7:44 p.m.

    Let this man alone. He is a credit to his Church and his community. As a citizen of the United States I am happy to have him live in my neighborhood. All of you that are heartless and say that he is a law breaker and should be deported should ask yourself what you would do if you were in his circumstance. I would hope that I would have the fortitude to follow his arduous path to the U.S. so that I could better provide for my family. Unfortunately our immigration system does not allow for him to legally immigrate.

  • K Mchenry, IL
    June 14, 2011 7:44 p.m.

    He moved to the US - on a VISA? Temporary or medical or as a permanant resident? In 1997, a year or two later he started paperwork? So 14 years after filing papers that were not progressing his case there is now surprise about being told to return? Certainly would have been easier on the kids to return in 06. Or years earlier when it became apparant the paperwork wasn't moving along to the family's desires.

    Another article on DN today talks about the Entitlement Trap book.

  • DRay Roy, UT
    June 14, 2011 8:03 p.m.

    I fear many will feel it is okay to fudge in other areas of church taught principles if our leaders give a pass on being illegally in the country. Of course we love the sinner, always, but cannot condone nor encourage the sin, or in this case, the breaking of the law. Illegal immigration has been acknowledged by church leaders as being unsustainable for US citizens over time. I want mercy over justice, so I hope to be merciful to others, while encouraging them to live justly, and striving to do so myself.

  • Voice Saint George, UT
    June 14, 2011 8:11 p.m.

    I find it unconscionable--definition--shocking to the conscious; unscrupulous; outrageous that people think someone not keeping the law should be able to stay because their family and friends will be upset when they are forcefully removed.

    I am very sorry for these children!!! Sorry they had to witness their father being removed. It is extremely sad the parents put the children in the middle of such a tragic tale.

    Thank you enforcement agents for doing your jobs!!! It must be difficult to hear the cries of all the people at the scene and know you will be made to look like the ones doing wrong. I, like many other citizens, am very glad you can keep your priorities straight. Again, thank you.

  • SteveinPA Tyrone, PA
    June 14, 2011 8:15 p.m.

    It so happens that my wife and I are also dealing with Byzantine U.S. immigration laws. She's a white Canadian schoolteacher and we've been marrried a year, and have just recently been approved by Homeland Security for the next step -- waiting for permission to apply for a visa for her, which will take many more months and beaucoup bucks beyond the extortionate fee we already paid for the first application (more than 400 dollars, and it was rejected the first time). Current immigration laws are very unjust -- they militate against families -- including married couples like us -- being able to live together within a reasonable length of time. For us, the process is likely to take a couple of years and several thousand dollars, and in the meantime, she lives in Newfoundland and I in PA. But unlike the people in this story and many others like them, we have chosen to obey the laws, fair or not. That is the only option for law-abiding LDS. The fact that so many ignore the laws and then complain when they get caught and deported does not move me in the least.

  • atl134 Salt Lake City, UT
    June 14, 2011 8:16 p.m.

    "It was my understanding the LDS Church supports the law of the land and emphasizes this to their congregations. "

    The optimist in me says it's because illegal immigration is a complicated issue.

    The pessimist in me says they are afraid of losing hispanic members knowing that it is predominantly hispanic growth in central and south america that makes up the majority of new baptisms.

  • MTaylor PROVO, UT
    June 14, 2011 8:29 p.m.

    Does the fact that they are deporting LDS teach us that they are in fact breaking the law? As others have mentioned, teaching this generation that it is OK to break the law, will have far reaching implications for the LDS church down the road.

  • Vladhagen Salt Lake City, UT
    June 14, 2011 8:31 p.m.

    @Voice Great comment. I concur. This is an unfortunate example of allowing good intention to interfere with policies of the LDS Church (See 21.1.16 of the General Handbook). Let us not confuse the private risks of some with actions being proscribed by the LDS Church. Experience has shown that those who emigrate illegally often encounter challenges such as this, resulting in disappointment and personal and family difficulties. It is painful for deportation of good men and women to occur, just as it would be painful to see a bishop given a large traffic ticket for speeding or placed in prison for giving unprescribed drugs to an ailing widow in pain. These are two random examples, but they illustrate the point that breaking the law has its cost--whether we think the law to be a good one or not.

  • jim l West Jordan, UT
    June 14, 2011 8:43 p.m.

    The line has to be drawn somewhere.

  • DeepintheHeart Lewisville, TX
    June 14, 2011 8:49 p.m.

    If you are a member of the LDS Church and uphold its leaders, I find it hard to see how you could be so anti-immigrant when church leaders are preaching compassion. If the church makes them lay leaders and grants them temple recommends, how can you in good conscience rail against and seek instant deportation? You church members who are so biased against your own brothers and sisters in the Gospel should reconsider your views and determine if perhaps you should moderate your thinking.

  • Say No to BO Mapleton, UT
    June 14, 2011 8:55 p.m.

    MormonDem suggests that the immigration laws are broken and not liberal enough to meet our needs. I disagree.
    What is broken is our will to enforce the law. The high numbers now preclude effective enforcement. Just a decade ago we had 3-4 million illegal aliens. Now we have 12 million+. I repeat, the political will is broken.
    We have never had a labor shortage in the last decade. We've had a lose labor market, which keeps wages low. Why pay a citizen $10/hour when someone will work in the underground market for $7?
    My church teaches obedience to the laws of the land and accepting the consequences of our actions. Recent statements by the church PR department make me wonder where I fit in.

  • DaleC Magna, UT
    June 14, 2011 9:18 p.m.

    We are all so incredibly, incredibly naive in this country. Have any of you ever been to Central or South America? Do we have any idea what it is like? Conditions there are exactly like those of pre-revolutionary France where the general populace had to resort to crime just to survive. A handful of aristocrats had the wealth of the entire country tied up and lived lavishly. When told the people were starving and had no bread, Marie Antoinette reportedly said, "Let them eat cake!" Is that how we feel? Instead of resting on the breastworks while speaking lying and vain words, maybe we should get off our lazy backsides and do something to help!

  • carman Alpine, UT
    June 14, 2011 9:30 p.m.

    It's never a bad thing to uphold the law. And we have to stop all the blubbering over people who chose to come here or remain in the U.S. illegally. If I went to another country on a visa, say China, and then stayed beyond the time I was legally allowed to remain in the country, I should not be surprised when the Chinese later deport me.

    And the reason our country is not as violent as Mexico is primarily because we have citizens who respect the law and largely comply with it. Lawlessness and disrespect for seemingly lesser laws drives contempt for law and ultimately lawlessness. This has been repeatedly shown as fact. One small example is New York Cities drive a few years ago to enforce the no squeegee or panhandling laws. New York has substantially reduced ALL major crime categories by starting with the smallest of laws.

    It is long-past time we enforced our immigration laws. Not enforcing the laws simply causes more pain as evidenced by this story.

  • JT4 Riverton, UT
    June 14, 2011 9:32 p.m.

    Re: The Deuce | 6:24 p.m.

    "I am amazed that this individual would be in a leadership position with the LDS church when they knew he was not in the country legally. It was my understanding the LDS Church supports the law of the land and emphasizes this to their congregations."

    You are right. And one of the questions in a temple recommend interview (mentioned by another poster) is whether you are honest in all your dealings. My understanding is that if you come into the country on a visa and attempt to change it to permanent status, you must leave the country if your attempts are unsuccessful. I don't know how a person reconciles "honest in all your dealings" with being in the country illegally.

    Another poster mentioned being married to a non-US citizen and going through the process to allow his spouse to live here permanently. My wife and I did that as well, so I also am not sympathetic to the view that some people should be absolved of the responsibility to go through legally recognized channels to residency simply because they have managed to avoid deportation for a long time.

  • carman Alpine, UT
    June 14, 2011 9:32 p.m.

    One additional comment:

    If we need more guest workers, let's put more reasonable guest worker laws on the books. It needn't leed to citizenship. Just the right to live and work here if the individual and his/her family do not commit any felonies or repeated misdomenors. But enforce the law that is on the books in the meantime!

  • I M LDS 2 Provo, UT
    June 14, 2011 9:47 p.m.

    The Lord works in mysterious ways, his wonders to perform. Obviously, the Lord has some higher design in mind for these Branch Presidents. They are needed back in their home countries, so the Lord inspired immigration officials to locate them and help them fulfill his will for them.

    I just love faith-promoting articles in the Deseret News!

  • Jonathan Eddy Payson, UT
    June 14, 2011 9:53 p.m.

    @ Jim L
    "The line has to be drawn somewhere."

    So will God when it comes to you. I sure hope you are obeying EVERY law!

  • Clinton King (Ephraim) Ephraim, UT
    June 14, 2011 10:03 p.m.

    Count me among the lawbreakers.

  • Grandma19 Spanish Fork, UT
    June 14, 2011 10:06 p.m.

    The full article on the LDS Church's statement can be found as follows: It is titled: "Immigration: LDS Church issues new statement." Published: Saturday, June 11, 2011 12:00 a.m. MDT, By Scott Taylor, Deseret News.

    I agree wholeheartedly with the article and the brethrens' counsel to obey the laws of the land -- no matter in which country we live.

    It's very sad to see from some of the comments that the only exercise some of the commenters are getting is by ..."jumping to conclusions,[and] "running down their [brothers and sisters](since we are ALL children of God)... ."

  • MormonDem Provo, UT
    June 14, 2011 10:12 p.m.

    hamburg said: "The LDS Church won't let have a man that is behind on his child support have a temple recommend but will let an illegal alien be a Branch President. What is wrong with this picture?"

    This shouldn't be a difficult question for anyone. In my mind, a man who breaks a (poorly written) law to provide for his family is morally in a much better position than a man who is breaking the law because he is not providing for his family.

    carman: in your comment at 9:30 you said that we just needed to enforce the law. Two minutes later you conceded that if more guest workers are needed we should make it easier to get guest worker visas that do not lead to citizenship. That is exactly what HB116 is intended to do. And that is exactly what the LDS Church has advocated. And the Utah GOP wants to repeal it!

    Also, it's rather amusing to see folks telling the brethren how to interpret the "honesty" TR question while simultaneously testing the boundaries of the "sustain the leaders of the Church" TR question by opposing the Church's immigration policy.

  • B Logan, UT
    June 14, 2011 10:26 p.m.

    In 1986, Ronald Reagan granted amnesty to 3 million illegal immigrants with the provision that, from that point forward, any company caught hiring any more illegal workers would be subject to big fines. 3 million people got amnesty, but the other part of the deal was never enforced.

    I am not anti-immigrant, as some have posted. I am anti-illegal immigration. Having said that, I realize these people come here in desperation with a hope of a tranquil life. There is no reason that it had to come to these men getting deported.

    There is a better way to do this:

    1. Shut off the flow - protect the boarder.
    2. Do a fast-track program to make these people citizens. If they will pledge allegiance to the United States, I want them here. If they won't, I don't.
    3. Take away any incentive to ever hire illegally again.

    The politicians won't ever allow this issue to be solved. It creates too many voting blocks for them...especially the liberals.

  • mecr Bountiful, UT
    June 14, 2011 10:40 p.m.

    DeseretNews should explain a little more about what they were doing in order to regulate their situation here. It looks like everybody thinks they were illegal and the INS caught them and deport them. That is not the case. They came here and apply for asylum which after some years was denied and therefore deported. There is so many people in this case (like the hotel owners from India) who not only tried to square with the law but were good productive people however, got deported while there are so many others who do live in the shadows, abuse the system and the INS do nothing about it.

    I believe that's why the Church says INS laws should be reformed. And people should be less critical and actually write to their representatives/senators to fix this problem for once and all.

  • SLars Provo, UT
    June 14, 2011 10:44 p.m.

    There are several reasons why their are lines for citizenship and residency. The illegal immigration of 12-20 million people greatly affects our ability to allow more legal people in to this country. We have allowed over one million people each year (legally) that's more than any other industrial country by a large margin. 440,000 is suppose to go to family members, over 700,000 went to family members last year. Now people complain because it makes it difficult to come here with out family. We cannot please everyone, or accept all that want to come here, unless they stand in line and take their turn.

    Our immigration laws were written in 1996. To many, no law will be fairly written unless they can get their way. Coming here illegally and justifying it by saying it will improve their lives is no different than justifying theft for the same reason. It is against the law (misdemeanor) to come here illegally, and multiple felonies to work here. Please. let's get back to teaching people personal responsibility and honesty in the immigration issue. Otherwise more will be deported. There is no statute of limitation for being here illegally.

  • Lilljemalm Gilbert, AZ
    June 14, 2011 10:53 p.m.

    Those who believe the immigration law is good haven't seen the reality of it. The immigration laws as they stand encourage illegal immigration. The politicos want illegals here to provide underpayed and even slave labor. Put a consolate in each border town. Lower the cost of a visa. Publish what it takes to get different kinds of visas to the US. Shorten the time it takes to get a visa from 4+ years to 4 weeks. For those who have been here for several years illegally, make it possible to apply and gain legal status if they otherwise are law abiding good residents.

  • snowman Provo, UT
    June 14, 2011 10:57 p.m.

    They were committing a crime just by being here illegally

  • snowman Provo, UT
    June 14, 2011 10:59 p.m.

    The church isn't deporting them nor is the church printing these stories.

  • WestGranger West Valley City, Utah
    June 14, 2011 11:17 p.m.

    If I get a traffic ticket does that mean I am a crimainal? Entering this country is not a crime. It can only rise to the level of a crime once someone has been deported and than returns. These are real people. The vast majority are Good people who have escaped devastating poverty, oppression and even death threats.It is an ice cold person who is so blinded by a justice only attitude that it allows them to ignore the cries of the children who are missing their father and can find no way to live with him again. They see no reason for any degree of mercy even in such a case where a family has been here for decades and established themselves as a blessing and a benefit to the community. The children who were brought her likely speak english better than spanish. Who cares? Things are so bad now in Mexico, many Mexicans would be given refugee status if only they were from somewhere other than Mexico.

  • SLars Provo, UT
    June 14, 2011 11:25 p.m.

    The reality of the law is good if enforced. It's a dishonest mess if they are not enforced. The only way to solve the problem is to enforce the laws and not reward those who break them.

    With 9% unemployment any guest worker pass is not looking at the reality of the economy, or looking for an honest long term solution. They are just hoping the problem will go away.

    If everyone was given amnesty tomorrow, would the pro-illegal groups stop telling people to come here illegally? Of course not. We would just start another cycle of illegal immigration and cries for amnesty.

  • The Rock Federal Way, WA
    June 14, 2011 11:25 p.m.

    At the beginning of the Iraq war a misguided 18 year old student from BYU chained himself in protest over the war. He got himself arrested. He later said; "that was the point."

    He also lost his opportunity to serve a mission because "We believe in obeying, honoring and sustaining the law."

    A young man that I know from Tonga was told by the church that he had to return to Tonga or receive legal status before he could serve a mission for the church. He left for his mission from Tonga, returned honorably and still lives in Tonga.

    Why are illegal aliens allowed to be Branch Presidents?

  • MapleDon Springville, UT
    June 14, 2011 11:28 p.m.

    I wonder what the reaction would be if I had obtained my membership in the Church or, better yet, a temple recommend through fraudulent means--coming in the back door, so to speak. How would Church leaders feel if I had acquired garments and was wearing them because of that phoney recommend?

    There's safety in standing on the side of "doing what's right," rather than doing what's politically expedient.

    Further, what does their being branch presidents have to do with anything? Would this not mean as much if the two men were sunday school teachers?

  • The Deuce Livermore, CA
    June 14, 2011 11:45 p.m.

    I feel that many do not understand the message contained in a number of the posts to this topic. We all feel for the need of the individual. Many however, also respect the law. As some have suggested, if things need to be changed then each of us can become part of the solution and not part of the problem. Our responsibility is to honor and obey the laws we have. If they need to be changed, we have the mechanism to do this in this country. We simply cannot decide to not honor a law simply because we don't think it is good. We do have the opportunity to change said laws through legal means. Simply having a good excuse for breaking a law does not make it right. Otherwise, I have a list of very good excuses for breaking a number of laws as I am sure others do as well. When things are done right the first time, there is no need to do them over. I am still interested in the LDS Church's comments about this situation and how these individuals were put into leadership positions.

  • joy Logan, UT
    June 14, 2011 11:45 p.m.

    I'm sure there is more to this story than we really know about. It saddens me to see good families separated. Maybe the families weren't being as honest as they should be and they were living in constant fear that this day would come. Being a foreigner they may not have understood what exactly happened with their legalization status. If I were in a foreign country I would totally be clueless to many of their laws and procedures. It really isn't my place to judge them. I'm just a little confused to the priorities of ICE.

  • skitarghee Cottonwood Heights, UT
    June 15, 2011 12:15 a.m.

    I'm guessing that if a person has friendship with an illegal, they are going to have empathy for others caught in this immigration issue. If, however, one sees them only as the masses that clean hotel rooms, mow their neighbor's lawn and speak poorly over the fast food intercom, then they are likely to be seen in the same way as the outcast Samaritans of Christ's time. I feel that many of us would broken the same immigration laws as those who have recently come to the "Land of Opportunity" to seek economic freedom and a better life for our children.

  • WestGranger West Valley City, Utah
    June 15, 2011 12:25 a.m.

    If we truly feel for the need of the individual we should see the big picture. A balanced solution that requires penalities for those who have come here illegally is reasonable and doesn't always have to include deportation. The entire immigration problem was created because we did not secure the borders. As a result we have immigrants here as well as there children and grandchilren raised here who have never been to Mexico. What laws did these kids break?
    We also took away the option that allowed immigrants to come here legally for a certain set time period when the Brazero guest worker program ended years ago. It is extremely difficult, if not impossible for a poor Mexican immigrant to come here legally. Attorney General Shurtleff has a program set up were Mexican workers can come here legally to work in industries where they are needed.The present system not only exploits Mexican workers but endangers our national security.

  • worf Mcallen, TX
    June 15, 2011 1:03 a.m.

    Laws do not cover every variable. We must reason in good conscience and not blindly follow any law. We make the best intelligent decision possible. Sorry folks, but I do not blame the church for anything in this matter.

  • NewsFeed Tooele, UT
    June 15, 2011 1:14 a.m.

    1. Each month thousands of immigrants proudly become U.S. citizens and pledge the Oath of Allegiance at the courthouse. That means that they followed an existing path to U.S. citizenship. The process usually involves going from a green-card holder or permanent resident to a U.S. citizen. Immigration is not broken for them. The ones complaining are usually the ones not playing by the rules.

    2. Applying to renew a driver's license using an illicit/false social security number is not right, regardless of citizenship. Anyone caught doing that should be legally punished or deported.

    3. There is no way to allow everyone to come into the U.S.A. without meeting certain requirements or immigration would become unsustainable.

    4. Finally, if a person is breaking the law, using someone else's social security number or violating a law he cannot make restitution for, pay a fine to make it right and he's violating it 24/7, he should not hold Priesthood positions in the Church. That creates an inexcusable double-standard.
    5. Persons engaged in illegal immigration or job-related felonies violate the 12th Article of Faith.
    6. Illegal immigrants cannot make restitution without returning home.

  • TMR Santa Monica, CA
    June 15, 2011 1:16 a.m.

    Sigh. This is a travesty and my heart goes out to the families, church congregations and communities who suffer the loss of these good folks. I realize that the mean-spirited commentators on this post represent a minority, even in Utah, but I wish your numbers were even fewer. By and large, illegal immigration renders more benefits than costs, although it is a convenient scapegoat for societal ills and seems to give voice to bullies. Put those who advocate law and enforcement without compassion in the shoes of the illegals for six months and positions would no doubt change.

  • JBrady Murray, Ut
    June 15, 2011 1:44 a.m.

    ICE's job is deport people that are here illegally. They had their day in court, they were not given residency, and their appeals were denied. What they did was against the law. We are just like every other country, we try to protect our borders and decide who comes here legally.

    The pro-illegal folks want amnesty, and continue to encourage people to come here illegally. Stopping their recruitment should be our first priority. Nothing should be done until new arrivals are stopped and the pro-illegal folks forced to stop openly defying our laws.

    We already have visas for when we need them. We don't need a lower class guest worker program that makes Utah look like the old south.

  • anti-liar Salt Lake City, UT
    June 15, 2011 1:47 a.m.

    "This case reminds us all of the need to address immigration reform.," said Scott Trotter of the LDS Church's Public Affairs Office.

    What Scott Trotter ought to be saying is, "This reminds us all of the need to obey, honor, and sustain the law."

    What's more, in NO WAY were the principles -- "The commandment to 'Love thy neighbor;' the importance of keeping families intact; and the federal governments obligation to secure its border," violated in the handling of these people's cases, as far as I can tell.

    So what then is Trotter's point, exactly, in mentioning these three principles? Is he subtly attempting to lead us to believe that to "love thy neighbor" is to endorse and continually turn a blind eye to illegal activity?

    If that is Trotter's true motivation, then he is WRONG. I don't care if he IS speaking for the Church.

    They really need their dad," Carias said.

    His family is free to follow him to his lawful country of residence. Problem solved! Incidentally, MANY fathers leave their families behind in their HOME countries, in the process of coming into this country illegally. Do not these families also need their fathers?

  • anti-liar Salt Lake City, UT
    June 15, 2011 1:51 a.m.

    "That means they will have to leave the United States for an uncertain future in country that is unfamiliar to them."

    Undoubtedly they already all speak Spanish. Therefore, moving to Guatemala will be very similar to what many Americans experience when they relocate to another state, for example. Typically it is an exciting adventure -- and hardly a tragedy. They now will be able to make wonderful contributions in their communities and to the Church -- in their own country.

    "To pull him away from his family and his community is senseless, she said."

    It is not senseless. He was was living in constant violation of the law. Here again we see the evidence of an inferior value system, one which does not truly appreciate the significance of the rule of law and its role in preserving religious freedom.

    "He's really a leader."

    The fact is that he was a bad example of good citizenship.

    This was the system working correctly, AND compassionately and lovingly to EVERYONE.

  • Voice Saint George, UT
    June 15, 2011 2:18 a.m.

    Joy, 11:45, I totally don't see how you think ICE has its priorities mixed up.The laws have been on the books for years. The deported people knew they were breaking the laws--they had been to hearings, had lawyers, etc.

    The paper is full of excuses when someone is in court for breaking the law.

    I really do feel sad for these children. First of all the parents ignore the residency laws and then the parents allow the children there to see the father cuffed. To me a reasonable person, in this case the not-cuffed mother, would have had the oldest child lead the other children from the room. No eight year old child needs to see a cuffed parent.

    She complains they saw their father like a robber...and she helped make that possible for them.

  • liberate Sandy, UT
    June 15, 2011 3:50 a.m.

    I'm surprised how callous most of these comments are. These people broke the law to have the privilege to work and provide for their families, a law that had rarely been enforced and therefore assumed not in effect (if you do any legal research you'll see there are hundreds of laws on the books that are not enforced). Sure, secure the borders now, but don't ruin the lives of law-abiding upstanding citizens by sending back to their countries. It's important to consider the motive in any crime committed. The motive here is nothing more than to get a job and provide for a family. I'm sure you wouldn't prosecute a pregnant mother in labor speeding to get to the hospital even though she'd actually be putting more lives at risk than these illegal immigrants, who are supporting the country.

    I am also amazed at the number of posters here who decide when and when not to agree with the church. I'm sure these are the same who were critical of those who didn't agree with the church's position on gay marriage. A bunch of hypocrites if you ask me.

  • 1Infidel APO, AE
    June 15, 2011 4:25 a.m.

    I too believe there is more to the story, but that those facts don't fit the framework of the story to sell the point of the article.

    Bloom where you are planted. Build the kingdom where you live. Obey the laws, while working to change them.

    Having compassion for one family or individual situation is one thing, but taking compassion on a wave of millions who are not motivated for the same reasons is foolishness. Being compassionate and seeking to assist or soften or lighten burdens of the first case are fine, but showing compassion to the masses so as to subvert the law is not in the nation's interests, or in the interest of those taking part in the illegal crossing of borders and seeking entitlements our society has wrought.

    Finally, I am sorry, "the kids need their dad" doesn't wash with me. I have been deployed continuously overseas without my seeing my kids but once a year, for several years and whining about it isn't going to get me the permanent position I want at home. Nice try, but the attempted human tweak fails.

  • SteveinPA Tyrone, PA
    June 15, 2011 5:20 a.m.

    I can't help feeling that there is an implied condescension in the double legal standard we seem to embrace with Hispanics versus non-Hispanics. I think most of us would take for granted that a white, Anglo would-be immigrant like my Canadian wife, because we assume that Canadians, Germans,and northern Europeans generally come from cultures of law and order. I doubt that anyone from such a background caught living and working illegally in the U.S. would be extended such compassion, because, after all, "they should know better." With Hispanics, on the other hand, there is this notion that they are poorer, less law-abiding, and perhaps less accountable for their actions and circumstances. The truth, however, is that there are a number of well-ordered societies in Latin America, such as Costa Rica and Chile, whose citizens aren't flooding into our country illegally. And there are many millions of ordinary law-abiding Mexicans, including many LDS, who see no need to flout our laws.

    Oh, and don't look for the immigration laws, unjust as they are, to change anytime soon -- at least until the anti-terrorism paranoia subsides.

  • Janet Ontario, OR
    June 15, 2011 5:56 a.m.

    Ephesians 2:19: "Now therefore ye are no more strangers and foreigners, but fellowcitizens with the saints, and of the household of God;" Oh wait -- not you. You're Mexican! Not you! You're Guatemalan! "When saw we thee a stranger...?" Study the history of immigration laws in the U.S. The first was in 1875; hence, many of your ancestors just walked off the boat or across the border (the Indians should have been more careful!). Immigration laws have been used to bar certain nationalities or ethnicities when they were unpopular. At present, it is almost impossible to immigrate legally from Mexico or several other Latin American countries. Immigration law is not sacrosanct! It has been very fluid over the past 100 years; it's changed before, and it can change again. People like these branch presidents will have a chance to bless their families and our country. We need sensible voters and sensible legislators who can work out sensible solutions.

  • Rufio Saratoga, UT
    June 15, 2011 6:00 a.m.

    "Latino community activist Tony Yapias said it was his understanding that Callejas-Hernandez . . . had not committed any crimes."

    Not knowing either family, I still must ask a few questions:

    1) Did either have employment to support there families?
    2) If so, did they use a legal tax identification number to pay taxes?
    3) Did they file tax returns?

    If not, are they law abiding or are these "crimes". I know of a couple people via the Deseret News that have gone to jail for failing to pay taxes or file proper tax returns.

    Likewise, does their employer face any penalties or fines?

  • Eddie Syracuse, UT
    June 15, 2011 6:02 a.m.

    Why do so many blame the Church for someone who decides in their own mind if they are telling the truth? If someone is asked a question and they give an answer, who's fault is it if they are wrong? When the Church asks a person if they are living the commandments and they answer that they are, is it the fault of the Church? When you lie to a potential employer about your skills, do we blame the employer?
    Get real people! Put the blame where it belongs....on the individual. I do believe that we should be concentrating on the bad guys who are here illegally and spend our money on getting them the heck out of here.

  • carminaburana Provo, UT
    June 15, 2011 6:10 a.m.

    There were several wards split into branches, in Provo, several years ago. According to my husband, bishops have to be legal resident for some reason and branch presidents do not. I know at least one former branch president who was not legal. Nowadays I think to be a missionary you have to be legal. Back in my day it made no difference. I came to this country legally 23 years ago and let me tell you it was not easy. My mother is 70 and was denied a visa twice, both her children are american citizens! I doubt she will be able to come back and visit again.

  • patriotandmore Spanish Fork, UT
    June 15, 2011 6:35 a.m.

    Aren't those who harbor criminals are guilty as well?

  • hamberg Salt Lake City, UT
    June 15, 2011 6:42 a.m.

    Families being separated is a bogus argument. Those illegals know that at any time they could be deported but they choose to have a family and that is no different than somebody committing a crime and going to jail and being separated from their families. Those people who who make that argument do not want people to be responsible for their actions and want to justify their bad behaviors.

  • MrDave Brownsburg, IN
    June 15, 2011 6:52 a.m.

    I really enjoy reading what these self-righteous religious people are saying about the LDS Church, many who themselves believe they are the "chosen people" in the LDS Church. It is time for us to be more Christlike and love one another instead of feeling better when another person is down.

  • Ricardo Carvalho Provo, UT
    June 15, 2011 6:55 a.m.

    Many illegal immigrants do the equivalent of 5 miles over the speed limit as they know it is winked at. Those who then become more prominent by doing good things such as coaching soccer teams and serving in leadership positions do put themselves at risk of being noticed and deported. The incentives are interesting hear. Keep a low profile and you will probably escape deportation. Raise that profile and you will probably put yourself at risk. Seems to me that the process is broken. I applaud the legislators of Utah for dealing with this issue straight on. One may disagree with the outcomes but at least there is a somewhat courageous attempt to deal with the issue. I wish our federal government representatives had the same courage.

  • Esquire Springville, UT
    June 15, 2011 7:07 a.m.

    But, Senate Republicans won't allow the immigration reform bill to be voted on.....

  • one day... South Jordan, UT
    June 15, 2011 7:07 a.m.

    REFORM is needed. the immmigration law DOESN'T work, we know that already, there is no way to send more than 40 millions of illegal alien to their countries, we need to secure the border, send those with criminal record and help each other, can you imagine how much money can we make out of this, with reform, we will know who are they and where, they will pay taxes, buy houses and car with their own documents and help our economy, just an idea...if they want to become residents, pay for it. $5,000 each...on 20 or 40 million people!
    If you are worried about people from the south border selling drugs, we should stop buying them, is that simple.
    We can help each other and see the benefits of it.
    My wife and I were separated from our family 2 years ago, laws in the States didn't help us at all to stay there, our family member are Citizens and Residents, but in order to become residents the process takes at least 10 YEARS, we moved to canada and applied for residence here, laws works a lot better here, sad but true!

  • thebigsamoan Richmond, VA
    June 15, 2011 7:07 a.m.

    @ B: Brilliant idea, and by far the best solution to this illegal immigration mess we're in. Wish you were running for office, bro! Ooops, don't even know if you're a he or she! Sad story nevertheless! There's no joy in seeing or hearing about anyone going through this kind of pain. Hope they can recover and come out better from this sad experience.

  • DougB Spanish Fork, UT
    June 15, 2011 7:10 a.m.

    I don't understand the xenophobia and hypocritical hatred expressed in so many of these comments. Practically all of our recent ancestors were immigrants to this area. Hardly any of our ancestors registered with the existing governments of the land when they arrived (ie neither my ancestors from Britain in the 1600's nor my ancestors entering Utah [Mexico] in the 1850's). Our US immigration laws were not so anti-immigrant until very recent times.

    Our current racist quotas got their start with anti-Chinese California congressmen who whipped up dishonest and unjust anti-Chinese fervor in the late 1880s and 90s to demand limits on how many were allowed to seek a better life in the "land of the free" from China per year. This proved such a popular campaign issue that the Feds started passsing all sorts of needless and arbitrary limits on unpopular Italians, Irish, Jews, etc.

    I find the story about the "Rameumptom" Zarahemla-ites to be remarkably similar to our current situation. Somehow they felt that only those born where they were and already successful deserved God's blessings. Alma had some hard words for that attitude . . .

    Please reconsider those views.

  • tiger1 New York, NY
    June 15, 2011 7:22 a.m.

    Business owners could have lend a hand by way of a job offering, not easy to do, but doable. This was a hard working man, trying to provide for his family. There is a need to improve communication between ecclesiastical leaders and the community at large. Other congregations would set up committess, and offer legal assistance to their flocks, but no one is willing to break barriers among the LDS leaders throughout the church.
    Hope is not too late for his family to reclaim their dad legally.

  • Honor Code Denver, Colorado
    June 15, 2011 7:22 a.m.

    Thou shalt not judge!!!

    Are these not famous words within???

  • Springvillepoet Springville, UT
    June 15, 2011 7:28 a.m.

    Illegal immigrants. They are here to take your jobs . . . and your church callings.

  • jenrmc Fort Worth, TX
    June 15, 2011 7:32 a.m.

    "This case reminds us all of the need to address immigration reform," said Scott Trotter, senior media relations manager for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, in a statement. "As we have stated, we believe any solution should include the following three principles: The commandment to 'Love thy neighbor;' the importance of keeping families intact; and the federal governments obligation to secure its border."

    The LDS church should have no opinion on immigration. It is a religious entity and therefore should stick to religious proselytizing. As stated many times, the person should not have been allowed to remain in a leadership position when/if they became law breakers. The person should have notified the proper authorities within the church and anyone possessing this information should have reported it. Were he to break any other federal law he would have been removed immediately.

  • unaffiliated_person Saratoga Springs, UT
    June 15, 2011 7:53 a.m.

    Janet,
    It is not "almost impossible" to immigrate from Mexico or Latin America. My souse from Mexico was just naturalized. We did the paperwork, went through the process, paid our fees, went to the appointments, and obtained residency and then citizenship. Many immigrants are successfully naturaliuzed every month. They usually do it at the Gallivan Center in Salt Lake once a month. Why should these people be permitted to bypass the process these legal immigrants go through? Just because the border of their country is closer to us than others?

  • Mulder21 Salt Lake City, UT
    June 15, 2011 7:55 a.m.

    I'm glad that something is being done. I don't feel bad for these people because they have come here illegally. If you break the law, you must be ready to suffer the consequences. Not even LDS people are above the law, despite what the leaders of the LDS church think.

  • Thoughtful Voter Spanish Fork, UT
    June 15, 2011 8:09 a.m.

    So, please, reconcile for me if you will the claim that those who oppose 116 do so only because they want to 'honor, sustain, and uphold the law'. Is 116 not a law? Did the slightly older laws that these respondents seem to prefer not contradict the established order of things when those laws were passed?

    The fact remains that HB116 helps promote an improved process and situation than the inadequate and severely flawed recent situation. I find this law to be quite praiseworthy and I'm going to vote to have this particular law upheld when I attend the GOP convention this Saturday and have a chance to voice my opinion in a non-binding but highly watched opinion poll (resolution vote).

    I'm glad my ancestors got here before so many Americans started buying the elitist, racist, "zero population" arguments. I pray that we might rectify some of the current xenophobia and unjust pride that is starting to set in.

  • rlsintx Plano, TX
    June 15, 2011 8:11 a.m.

    Yapias said the deportation of law-abiding people is "devastating" to families.

    if they are here illegally, they are NOT law-abiding. PERIOD. Its double-speak at it's finest - and right up there with Bill Clinton's "It depends on what the definition of "is" is"...

  • Bro.D Cornelius, Oregon
    June 15, 2011 8:29 a.m.

    hamburg said: "The LDS Church won't let have a man that is behind on his child support have a temple recommend but will let an illegal alien be a Branch President. What is wrong with this picture?"

    mormondem replied: This shouldn't be a difficult question for anyone. In my mind, a man who breaks a (poorly written) law to provide for his family is morally in a much better position than a man who is breaking the law because he is not providing for his family.

    Actually a large chunk of the estimated 12-18 million illegals here are not providing for their families. The taxpayers of this country are through entitlement programs. We are providing health care, food, and money so they can live here illegally and it has really taxed the system. Regardless of what you say the laws are not poorly written...they are just poorly enforced.

    Personally I am dissappointed the First Presidency is allowing people who intentionally break the law to receive a TR....it cheapens the one in my pocket.

  • Ms Molli Bountiful, Utah
    June 15, 2011 8:29 a.m.

    I don't think that loving they neighbor and deporting someone for being here illegally are at odds. How about loving ALL our neighbors and respecting their rights to want everyone here to obey the law.

  • Timj South Jordan, UT
    June 15, 2011 8:35 a.m.

    I will repeat what has been said here earlier: it is almost impossible for the average person to legally immigrate from Latin America. Even those who are married to U.S. citizens (like "unaffiliated person" above) may run into serious problems, although generally they have a much easier time immigrating legally. It's especially difficult for those looking for landscaping, restaurant, or housecleaning jobs to immigrate legally.

    Every illegal immigrant I have known (and I know most of them through church) works hard here in the U.S. Every illegal immigrant I know is a good person, what Jesus would call a Good Samaritan.

    Another poster stated that missionaries cannot be illegal immigrants. That is false; the LDS church knowingly sends out illegal immigrants within the United States. One of these was arrested by ICE in Cincinnati a few years ago as he was heading home, following an honorable LDS mission. Apparently the church doesn't put much stock in poor immigration laws, and realizes that people are more important than bad laws.

  • Rocky Mtn Lady Columbus, MS
    June 15, 2011 8:59 a.m.

    What happened to obeying and sustaining the law??? when these men were interviewed for the calling were they not asked their legal status??? Where is the vetting???? what happened to the priesthood authority who let this happen??? More black eyes for the church

  • Flashback Kearns, UT
    June 15, 2011 9:03 a.m.

    You can still love your neighbor while deporting him for being in the country illegally. Loving your neighbor doesn't include condoning breaking the law. Tony Yapias stating the dude from Draper didn't break any laws is a big load of dung. He was here illegally. If now laws were broken, when then was he deported? I have no sympathy for them. Let them come legally, and I have no problem, at all.

  • coleman51 Orem, UT
    June 15, 2011 9:05 a.m.

    It is very hard for me to imagine why good families are deported while those who commit crimes are frequently harbored and remain. I guess it is easier for ICE to round up those who actually have decent resume's. Immigration reform has been kicked down the road too long. As long as we have this deadlock between the President and Congress, it won't be resolved anytime soon.

  • Liberal Ted Salt Lake City, UT
    June 15, 2011 9:07 a.m.

    A better system, is for people to enter this country legally. Send them home and then have them apply for citizenship.

    Why is it, everytime people make poor choices, the people of the US have to pick up their slack?

    They'll never learn until they're allowed to fail. They lived off of our system. Now they can go back to their native lands and improve their country and people.

  • gizmo33 St. George, Utah
    June 15, 2011 9:10 a.m.

    it doesnt matter what you do for a living here in the U.S or what religous organization you belong to. it doesnt matter if you coach football or baseball or tap dancing if you are here illegally and with a expired Vise you have committed a crime just what part of ILLEGAL is it people dont understand ? I was born in France and became a citizen so I know what they have to go through to get it done. and its just a case of them not wanting to take the effort to do it. well then in that case they should expect whats coming. do I support illegal immigration ? ---NO ! I took the time to make it legal they can to

  • Mysty Lilburn, GA
    June 15, 2011 9:11 a.m.

    I am so disappointed in the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints. Did the leaders not learn during the Polygamy days that it was an obligation to obey the laws of the land? Did that declaration not come from a prophet? (My recollection of the history may be inaccurate.)
    What is the church doing now? Allowing illegal aliens to become church leaders (examples to others) and allowing them to have temple recommends.
    The people who are here illegally, chose to come here, they weren't forced. They knew they were breaking the law and they knew the consequences.
    The church is guilty of harboring illegals - a felony- as is anyone who knows that someone is here illegally. Anyone ever hear of aiding and abetting? I guess, since the church has sanctuary status, it doesn't matter. But it does matter to people who live next door to them or hire their children as babysitters or give work to them or even give them a ride to school.
    I believe it's a five year jail sentence.
    Think about it.

  • CJ Murray, UT
    June 15, 2011 9:13 a.m.

    One day,

    Our immigration laws are just fine thank you very much. No laws work if no one enforces them. Traffic laws don't work without police to insure compliance.And YES WE CAN expel millions of illegals, it has been done by three Presidents. We don't lack the ability, we lack the will. When a lot of people break the law you don't just throw your hands up and make deals with those breaking it, you do something about it. Illegals are destroying the state and nation, looting our treasuries and taking jobs away from Americans and shipping billions of dollars out of the country in the process. Do you really think this isn't affecting the country in a big way? The last thing we need is people like you out there waving the white flag while our nation is being overrun with illegals.

  • ClarkKent Bountiful, Utah
    June 15, 2011 9:15 a.m.

    @Coleman51, Lawbreaking illegals are deported all the time. You are reading a press that seems to only be reporting about "good" LDS church leaders who are deported. I don't think the INS is out to get good, "law-abiding" illegals. When it comes to their attention that someone is here illegally, they act on it. I don't know if someone is reporting LDS leaders -- I am surprised to not be reading that paranoid take in some of the comments .. YET.

  • In Arizona Mesa, AZ
    June 15, 2011 9:21 a.m.

    Response to "Carman in Alpine Utah"
    You say the reason that our country is not as violent as in Mexico is because our citizens generally comply with the law. I agree with that. "Our citizens". You need to come to Southern Arizona and sleep out in the desert for a few nights and see the violence. Oh wait, in our beautiful Southern Arizona desert the Federal Government has posted signs stating how dangerous and life threatening it is just to be in the area! Violence from "non-citizens" HAS spilled over into America, not just spilled over but is flooding!

  • In Arizona Mesa, AZ
    June 15, 2011 9:23 a.m.

    To West Granger: The father was deported to Guatemala, not Mexico.

  • GoodGuyGary Houston, TX
    June 15, 2011 9:23 a.m.

    It is a sad story, but bottom line, we need to obey the laws, it doesn't matter, you are the bishop or not.

    I am a LDS and I am a legal immigrant.

  • In Arizona Mesa, AZ
    June 15, 2011 9:29 a.m.

    To Honor Code in Denver:
    You quote Thou Shalt Not Judge. You need to read Elder Dallin Oaks talk he gave a few years ago entitled Judge Not and Judging, given at BYU on March 1, 1998. I think you might change your comments after reading if you do believe in modern day Apostles.

  • USAlover Salt Lake City, UT
    June 15, 2011 9:39 a.m.

    As a Bishop, I'm concerned we are calling illegal aliens to church callings at all. My respectful opinion is they have broken the law.

  • Drifter Provo, UT
    June 15, 2011 9:46 a.m.

    I would like to know how the ICE people can find these good people, who contribute to our community and support themselves, and not be able to locate and deport the 1300 that we know are here and living on welfare.
    Who were exposed by some really courageous whistle-blowers who were themselves punished for exposing the idiotic decisions of the state.
    What kind of people are we becoming? We let employers underpay illegals who then live on the welfare system forcing legals citizens to support them. And in the process putting legal citizens out of work.
    Then we toss out those who are skilled and support themselves-
    Supporting the repeal of HB116 is beginning to look better and better.

  • achick47 Abilene, TX
    June 15, 2011 9:49 a.m.

    I have read several of these stories from Utah, Texas and Arizona where Priesthood holders who were Bishops or Stake authority holders were deported. I hold that every one needs to try to do the best for their families and this is an instruction from God. My faith is shaken when I realize that men who do not follow the instruction to "abide by the laws of the country" are allowed to hold offices that matter. I have prayed and the answer I get is" Men in authority who allow this are condone this are making worldly decisions not spiritual ones". Yes Family is a basic concern and must remain together and the Women who chooses to marry a person here illegally or the Man who makes this chose should also leave the country and keep their family together. They will either live there are find a way to legally return but they do not need the government or church to do what they should have done lawfully the first time. Their example to our young people is it is ok to cheat, break the law as long as you do it for yourself is just WRONG.

  • flowerz WEST VALLEY CITY, UT
    June 15, 2011 9:50 a.m.

    Oh goodness, I have SO much to say on this topic... I am married to an immigrant... we did everything legally and his papers are in order. Thank goodness! However, it is a nerve-wracking and confusing process. In attempts to get correct information about filing paperwork at each stage of the process, I called the immigration hotline. I asked them what forms I would need to file. I wrote down what they told me and pulled up the forms on the USCIS website. After going through the forms, some of them did not apply to my situation AT ALL. I called four times, each person gave different form numbers for the same situation... I took the most common ones mentioned, filed those and crossed my fingers! Luckily, it worked! But if I had only filed what the first person told me, we could've been in trouble! If you are immigrating, get legal assistance... there are also websites with tips from other immigrants... the USCIS hotline can mess you up.
    If you've never dealt with the USCIS, have a little compassion! People come from other countries seeking hope and stability and get stuck in fine print and misinformation.

  • Fitness Freak Salt Lake City, UT
    June 15, 2011 9:56 a.m.

    Witness the efficiency of the federal government: They COULD take a bus to the parking lot of the mexican food markets and fill it in about 20 minutes with 60 or so illegal trespassers. Instead, they spend countless hours and $$$ on this guy.

    Oh, and while they're at the market, they might want to see how many trespassers they can find with 3 sets of i.d. Please don't accept their explanation that they "found them" or they "belong to their cousin". Also, the dvd's with the titles written by hand in magic marker probably ARE pirated.

    I have a STRONG feeling this was a publicity stunt on the part of the feds to elicit compassion (and excuse them for not doing their job).

    Either that, or ICE is under orders to deport ALL potential Republicans and leave the welfare and food stamp recipients alone.

  • Ms Molli Bountiful, Utah
    June 15, 2011 10:02 a.m.

    @flowerz, Perhaps the hard work in being here legally is worth the reward. By the way, people who have experience getting here legally should consider lookig into volunteering with agencies to help others do the same thing.

  • Janet Ontario, OR
    June 15, 2011 10:06 a.m.

    @unaffiliated person: I have tried to help undocumented immigrants; I have contacted immigration lawyers and other experts. I have been told that a person who is already here has no recourse, that s/he will have to wait two years after leaving the U.S. to apply, and that the process could take 10 years -- if it even works then. It is also very expensive. One of my students had an aunt and uncle who spent $40,000 and many years getting legal status. My student has been unable to do so. The necessity of taking oneself out of the shadows in order to begin the process puts one on the ICE radar and can end very quickly in deportation. Bro D.: Seriously? "disappointed in the First Presidency"? Isn't there a TR question about sustaining the General Authorities? There is a very strong undercurrent of selfishness and xenophobia in many of the DN posts on immigration issues. It isn't my place to judge you, but....

  • oldcougar Orem, UT
    June 15, 2011 10:06 a.m.

    @JBrady
    "We don't need a lower class guest worker program that makes Utah look like the old south."
    Oh my, I think this says it all. So many underlying messages here that characterize all of you "Shylocks" who demand a pound of flesh and are so thrilled when these and other families are deported, to answer the ends of the law. You are also very brazen, hiding behind your online personae, in criticizing the counsel and actions of your church leaders. You are also the same who were so critical of our brethren on the left when they revolted against the church's stand on Prop. 8. You can wonder, you can have an opinion, but in the end, you can't have it both ways. No matter what your political feelings, you must follow the prophet. You can't require him to conform to your politics to gain your allegiance and discipleship. If that seems repugnant or silly to you, then perhaps you need to reconsider your church membership (I'm sure some of you already are...if so, don't let the door hit you on your way out!)

  • K Mchenry, IL
    June 15, 2011 10:08 a.m.

    I wonder those marrying and trying to get citizenship for spouse from Canada or somewhere south how hard is it for a US citizen to be able to get citizenship there? Why not move to the spouse's nation? That is an option. Obviously the US or other nation allowed you to be together in the same place long enough to fall in love make a marriage committement.

    As for the "to suddenly deport" comment. What part of these stories was sudden? If there were sudden deportation most the children born and raised here wouldn't have been born or raised here to be returned to the parent's homeland.

    The reason the 70 year old mom is denied a VISA to come here temporarily is because there is no ties to make her inclined to go back. Too many don't. That is the problem with why quotoas are not updated and temp VISA's not issued from certain places. Too high a rate not returning.

    Everyone can't live here.

    If all the good people from those places come here where is the hope that those places will change?

  • The Rock Federal Way, WA
    June 15, 2011 10:08 a.m.

    The "Recommend" buttons are nice.
    Can we please have a "Condemn" button.
    Some pro-immigration, anti-law folks here have said some pretty stupid things.

    I find it particularly offensive that some blame opposition to this insane mess they created on racism.

    Illegal aliens are murdering our people, driving up government costs, taking jobs that Americans could and should hold, and they blame our opposition to this on racism. It has nothing to do with racism. It has everything to do with real problems.

    America is a nation.
    All nations have borders.
    Those who don't like borders would destroy our nation.
    What is a nation without borders?

    Would you buy a lot and build a house on it if there were no property lines?
    Do property lines mean anything if you cannot control who has access to your property?
    Do borders of a nation mean anything if you can't (or will not) control who crosses those borders?

    A nation without borders is no nation at all.

    That is after all what the liberals want.

  • flowerz WEST VALLEY CITY, UT
    June 15, 2011 10:10 a.m.

    Also, I don't understand why people are blaming the LDS church for this. The church does not investigate people's legal status here... duh! What church does? Most US citizens are uninformed about the legal process. So, first of all, they don't get caught up in people's legal status here. Second, if they did, how would it go: "So, Brother,/Sister how is your residency paperwork coming along?" "Oh, we filed it and are waiting for a response." "Ok, good luck." or maybe "Well, there were some issues with our paperwork, but we are working on it." I really don't understand what people expect the church to do? Get involved in the legal affairs of its members? That could be bad. Maybe this guy really believed that eventually it would work out and said everything was fine. Maybe he was delusional about the whole thing. But the church, to my knowledge, allows the members to be responsible for their dealings with the laws of the land.

  • 5 Orem, UT
    June 15, 2011 10:11 a.m.

    I don't know how illegal aliens can work in this country without breaking some serious laws. Just being here to work and improve the plight of ones family is very admirable, and I think we should make it easier to do it lawfully. But how can you work without a social security number. And if they obtained one illegally that is a serious crime.
    The reasons are many as to why we can't achieve reform. Not the least is that we have created a slave class which is too often paid less than market and even less than minimum wage because the employers know the illegals have no recourse. That is why thy do jobs citizens won't do.

  • J-TX Allen, TX
    June 15, 2011 10:13 a.m.

    Have any of you LDS people read carefully the Church's recent Official Statements on the question of immigration?

    They emphasize:
    1) Federal Government should fix the problem, and enforcement is their responsibility and duty.
    2) Immigration status alone should not be the sole criteria in denying a temple recommend or extending a calling. Priesthood leaders should use their best judgement in all these situations. --Hopefully the leaders doing the interviews will ask LOTS of questions, like, "are you using someone else's SSN or have you falsely acquired any US ID documents?" In these cases, it is NOT solely their immigration status, and Recommends and callings should be denied them.
    3) All decisions regarding immigration / deportation should be in keeping with the concepts of compassion and love, and family unity should be considered.
    4) Mambers of the Church should refrain from judgementalism.

    It is #4 to which I would like to draw your attention. Debating the issues is cool. Decrying any individual's situation without knowing ALL facts in the case is judging unrighteously. Criticizing your leaders for doing their callings to the best of their ability is treading on unsteady ground.

  • oldcougar Orem, UT
    June 15, 2011 10:13 a.m.

    Those of you extolling the quality of our existing immigration laws, while self-righteously condemning those who violate them for the good of their families, need to do a little more homework. And those of you claiming to have experienced these laws (coming from Canada), and patting yourselves on the back for "doing it right," are making a false comparison. Being poor and desperate and speaking a different language, while confronting ICE, is a totally different experience. I know. I have worked tirelessly helping a few Latin Americans get here (and we did it legally). The system is a bureaucratic, unjust nightmare...an embarrassment to our country. Even though we did it legally, I still have abundant empathy and mercy for those who sink in the quicksand that is our immigration system. We need to be fighting for reform, as well as enforcement. What the church advocates for is a good balance of justice and mercy...a commonsense, mature approach that recognizes reality, not some "black and white," my-way-or-the-highway fantasy.

  • I M LDS 2 Provo, UT
    June 15, 2011 10:24 a.m.

    Rock,

    With the exception of your very last sentence, I agree with you.

    Preserve our nation by preserving our borders and enforcing immigration laws.

  • flowerz WEST VALLEY CITY, UT
    June 15, 2011 10:27 a.m.

    @Ms Molli

    You are correct, it does feel good when you know your papaers are in order! Whenever we have friends who have a similar immigration process, we always offer to help and have helped quite a few.

    but to anyone needing help, google "immigration help" it's there!

  • holly56 LOVELAND, CO
    June 15, 2011 10:28 a.m.

    I understand the premise; but what I don't understand is why they are seeking those who are living good, beneficial lives and are self-supporting. How about working on the deportment of those who are in gangs, dealing drugs, thieving, or those who drain our Medicaid system, etc.? I have to wonder if it isn't a numbers game...perhaps it's not so easy to find and deport the illegal immigrants who are DOING illegal things. After all, they "deserve" access to the judicial system first, tying up American dollars and time, right? So is ICE compensating by finding the "easy" ones.

    And I'm not saying that it's only illegals who are involved in such things, but certainly that's where the work should begin if they truly want to start deporting.

  • Walt Nicholes Orem, UT
    June 15, 2011 10:29 a.m.

    In every spanish-speaking ward (every ward, for that matter) surely there are worthy members who are here legally. Can't the stake presidents chose them for leadership? This isn't discrimination, this is common sense. What an embarrassment for the church to have it announced all over the world that a certain local church leader has been deported! Deported! That sounds so bad! We have enough problems with the public image of the church as it stands without creating more.

    Before a Stake Presidency and a High Council review the names of possible individuals for a ward or branch calling they always consider whether the individuals are worthy, qualified and eligible. Can't we find people who are worthy, qualified and eligible who are here legally?

    The church may not issue a directive to this effect, because it would be feeding the flames, but certainly Stake Presidents could figure it out, or it could get that fuzzy implicit endorsement from "The Brethren" that is sometimes needed to get things going in the right direction without an official statement.

  • GiuseppeG Murray, Utah
    June 15, 2011 10:33 a.m.

    This unfortunate story reminds me of another crime that really ticks me off: texting while driving.

    I don't care if illegal texters otherwise are not driving recklessly or causing an accident. It's obvious to me that since some illegal texters cause accidents, we must impose the same penalty on ALL illegal texters. I'm furious that the state profers 'amnesty' on these criminals by only fining them for their illegal behavior. I insist that we ban them for life from driving AND using cell phones.

    If anyone puts up some silly idea like let the punishment fit the crime and only reserving significant punishment for illegal texters who actual cause problems while allowing a lesser punishment for the others, I will insist on calling them pro-texting, anti-law, amnesty-loving liberals.

  • oldcougar Orem, UT
    June 15, 2011 10:49 a.m.

    @USALover
    "As a Bishop, I'm concerned we are calling illegal aliens to church callings at all. My respectful opinion is they have broken the law."
    I'm fine with you having such a concern. I'm guessing we all have them at times. However, my concern is that you identify yourself, from behind your firewall, as a bishop while questioning the church's practices. I recommend you take it up with church authorities, through channels, not with online dialog in a public forum. In fact, why don't you call Pres. Monson, give him your name and the name of the congregation over which you preside, and ask him for an opportunity to discuss this issue with him. I'll bet he'll get right on the phone with brother Jensen and instruct him to change the church's stance and message...once you have a chance to talk some sense into him. Maybe then he and the brethren will address this issue with more prayer and pondering...

  • Third try screen name Mapleton, UT
    June 15, 2011 10:56 a.m.

    The words "compassion" and "charity" are thrown around quite freely by those who embrace amnesty.
    May I suggest that charity is GIVEN, not confiscated.
    Take a look at Alma 27:21 for an example of how it is given in a public policy setting.
    Marching in the streets and demanding to be legalized are surely not in the spirit of charity.
    I am proud of our nation for accepting refugees over the years. The people have elected leaders and parameters are set. Surely the demand it greater than our capacity for intake.
    But I cannot abide those who come here uninvited and expect to be accommodated. Don't judge me as lacking charity for turning such people away.

  • Timj South Jordan, UT
    June 15, 2011 10:57 a.m.

    "Can't the stake presidents chose them for leadership?"

    Hate to break it to you, but not every ward is full of leadership material. Sometimes there are a very limited number of people in a ward who are prepared to be religious leaders. I've lived in such wards myself. I have family that attends a Spanish-speaking branch in Utah, and they are always looking for good leadership material. Immigration status isn't nearly as important when seeking a leader as many, many other considerations.

    Notice that the Deseret News itself (which is owned by the LDS church) is publishing stories about this. Why would the newspaper owned by the LDS church publish such stories? Obviously, they're not trying to give the church a black eye. They're effectively showing how silly our current immigration laws are. And they're reinforcing an important idea--the church isn't too concerned about what your immigration status is. The church is focused on more important things.

  • JeanPierre Mesa, AZ
    June 15, 2011 11:03 a.m.

    It seems to me that "What the church advocates for is a good balance of justice and mercy" to many Mormons is amnesty, open borders, and unlimited welfare assistance.

  • Clinton King (Ephraim) Ephraim, UT
    June 15, 2011 11:07 a.m.

    If the US is deporting these two men, I wonder why I haven't been deported yet? It is certainly as just to deport me as it is to deport them.

  • kenny Sterling Heights, MI
    June 15, 2011 11:13 a.m.

    What I wish to comment on is the possibilities of this family in their native land of Guatemala. It does not have to be seen as bad.Being a branch president I would asume that he will continue to be active in the church.The church is very strong in Guatemala.His family can join him and maintain the same ideals and values they had in Utah. There are jobs available in Guatemala for those who are trained and willing to work. Family life there can be very good if one decides to make it that way.Having lived in Guatemala as an active member of the church and knowing what can be done if there is a positive attitude and a willingness, I personally know that life can be as good as or even better than what this family expirenced in Utah.They dont need to be in the United States to have the good life. They can make it happen right in their own country. I know this is true.To be deported may have been a blessing. Maybe.......

  • kepurz Salem, OR
    June 15, 2011 11:17 a.m.

    To those who condemn the the illegal aliens for "breaking the law":
    You sound like those who would condemn the Savior for healing on the Sabbath or eating with a publican. How can you look down on the less fortunate? The meek? The poor in spirit, the lowly in heart? Do you turn away the beggar and judge them to be a thing of naught? Would you be those who were in favor of rounding up the Jews because it was the law? This is NOT what the Savior taught. He taught love and empathy and kindness to EVERYONE! No matter how they came to be where they are. There are laws in this country, but there ALWAYS is a higher law.
    Matthew 22:37-40 Jesus said unto him, Thou shalt alove the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind.
    This is the first and great commandment.
    And the second is like unto it, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself.
    On these two commandments hang all the law and the prophets.

  • Parkite1 Park City, UT
    June 15, 2011 11:21 a.m.

    Illegal means exactly that Illegal...get rid of all Illegals now! Everyone get out and vote when the vote comes to yoru county to punish and close All businesses that hire Illegals!

  • byu rugby Crystal Lake, IL
    June 15, 2011 11:24 a.m.

    Either one obeys the law or they don't. You can't have it both ways. Shame on the LDS church leadership for not balancing mercy and justice.

    How can leadership in good faith call a man to a position of responsibility when he isn't being responsible for himself. As a member of the church, The "Official Statement" on ILLEGAL IMMIGRATION is contrary to the basic obey the law of the land tenent of our religion.

  • E. Matscheko St. George, UT
    June 15, 2011 11:25 a.m.

    While serving as Bishops, Mr. Callejas-Hernandez and Mr. Carian-Odonez knowingly, intentionally and repeatedly broke the law.
    Now their families may have to pay the price ... hopefully not!

  • OceanAvenue Bountiful, Utah
    June 15, 2011 11:28 a.m.

    Majorie, it is so great to see your byline again. We miss your columns.

  • FarnsworthPMacGillicuddy Layton, UT
    June 15, 2011 11:28 a.m.

    If someone is here illegally, HOW can they be serving in any LDS leadership capacity? "Honoring, obeying and sustaining the law" should count for something, or it should be stricken from the Articles of Faith. Such hypocrisy creates a great deal of "confusion" among Utah Mormons, the worldwide members "understand" how things work here in Utah.

  • Brahmabull sandy, ut
    June 15, 2011 11:38 a.m.

    This still amazes me. In the country illegally and are allowed to be in a position of leadership and thus be permitted to go to the temple. Drink a beer once in a while or a coffee (which is not a crime) and you can't do either. Does anybody else see a problem with that?

  • mkSdd3 Ogden, UT
    June 15, 2011 11:56 a.m.

    All of the people that were deported were breaking the law. Those quoted in the article are wrong when they say they have broken no laws.

    None of them were working in farm related jobs. I am continually told that those who are here illegally are taking jobs that no one else wanted. That seems to be untrue.

    The U.S. can't take in everyone who wants to be here. Those that are unwilling to wait should not be given priority over those willing to do it the right way.

    If we want to come up with a solution to this problem, we must start to be honest with the facts. When we try to justify, or sugar coat things, we paint an incorrect picture. All the distortions that are presented is preventing us from openly discussing the true problems and how we can best solve the problem.

    The flood gates must be shut! Everyone that is not here illegally must leave, and come back in a legal way. Nothing else is acceptable.

  • ClarkKent Bountiful, Utah
    June 15, 2011 11:56 a.m.

    Where does the repentance process fit in here? I thought that an important part of repentenace was to right your wrongs, make your victim whole, etc., to the extent you can. Does someone who has broken the law and entered and stayed in this country illegally not have to repent for that? How does this person "pay" for their illegal actions other than to make it right -- to leave and enter when it is legal to enter? Do criminals no longer have a duty to pay restitution, to the extent they can, to their victims during the repentance process? Aren't all American citizens and others who are in this country lawfully victims of these illegal activities? Just look at the resources that our legislatures and others are having to allocate to these activities. Resources are scarce right now. We are all being harmed by this. How does turning the other cheek mesh with the repentence process of righting a wrong?

  • Dingo Maricopa, AZ
    June 15, 2011 12:07 p.m.

    why does the church think it is not in the immigration business, but will blindly baptize as many illegal aliens as they can lead into the water? Where are the Bishops when the baptisimal interview takes place? Why not save alot of heartache by asking these folks, "are you here legally." Just follow the common sence approach, "if it walks like a duck and quacks like a duck" find out if the folks are lawfully in this country. Alot of heartache can be averted. Where is the leadership in abiding by the laws of the country?

  • Eddie Syracuse, UT
    June 15, 2011 12:11 p.m.

    Since when does it ask in the Temple interview or Church calling questions, "Are you a legal resident of the US"? It does not ask every question know to man or that will satisfy all the "non-LDS" people. For all you self-righteous people out there, do you ever go over the speed limit or cheat on your taxes or steal somethimg from work and then declare yourself "honest in your dealings with your fellow man."

    If the Church were to ask every person they interview if they were a legal person in the country, they then would be critized for snooping into lives and of being racist.

  • In Arizona Mesa, AZ
    June 15, 2011 12:14 p.m.

    To OldCougar:
    As a former Bishop I did take this up with the "authorities" in SLC and was told to leave it alone.

  • BobP Port Alice, B.C.
    June 15, 2011 12:34 p.m.

    I am appalled at the totally Pharasitical attitudes attitudes in the comments here. I doubt that our Saviour would agree with their attitudes. The Law is meant to serve people, not to be the peoples master.

  • afdad AMERICAN FORK, UT
    June 15, 2011 12:36 p.m.

    As others have mentioned, we are a sovereign nation that has the right and duty to enforce its boarders and regulate its citizenry. We are a country that respects the rule of law. To enforce the law doesn't make you mean-spirited or without compassion. If the laws aren't just or appropriate to today's realities then we all need to work within the law to get them changed. I'm grateful for forums like this were there can be a free exchange of ideas on the issue.
    2 Nephi 2:13
    "And if ye shall say there is no law, ye shall also say there is no sin. If ye shall say there is no sin, ye shall also say there is no righteousness. And if there be no righteousness there be no happiness. And if there be no righteousness nor happiness there be no punishment nor misery. And if these things are not there is no God. And if there is no God we are not, neither the earth; for there could have been no creation of things, neither to act nor to be acted upon; wherefore, all things must have vanished away."

  • UT-TXmom ARGYLE, TX
    June 15, 2011 12:48 p.m.

    To Old Cougar - you are rather harsh yourself.
    To Deep in the Heart of TX - church membership is not deporting illegal immigrants, US Law enforcement is.

    I find it ridiculous to call other commentators' validity of Chruch membership into question. We all have a right to our opinion, and because one feels pro or against, does not indicate our worthiness before God. God determines that. To tell someone else that they are not a good member of the LDS church is not your business!
    Regrettable as this situation is, I think all hope for a satisfactory solution. I imagine that since these men served in such positions, they are wonderful and I wish them & their families the best in their adversity.

  • Voice Saint George, UT
    June 15, 2011 12:53 p.m.

    oldcoug,
    You've asked others to post their names.

    How about you posting your names so illegal immigrants, panhandlers (Why just stop with the illegal status? Panhandlers are God's chidren, too, and are neighbors even though they aren't in houses.), etc. can locate you so you can share and whatever you have with them?

    Personally, I can support the laws of the land AND love my neighbors AND not judge. I'm leaving that to enforcement people.

  • worf Mcallen, TX
    June 15, 2011 1:02 p.m.

    There is an answer to all of this. First we clean out our corrupt government and promote industry and manufacturing. Than we clean out the corruption to the south and make them tax paying states. We'll all be American citizens and people to the south will more likely stay in their area. Easy answer.

  • wayneincalif Huntington Beach, CA
    June 15, 2011 1:10 p.m.

    I agree with some others that, when asked, "Are you honest in your business dealings?" that this also means have you broken any laws.
    It really is absurd that being in this country illegally is not reason for denying a Temple recommend--but drinking a cup of coffee is.
    However, with that said, I am very frustrated that people here illegally, but, that are working, paying taxes, and contributing to society in general are the ones being deported; while, at the same time, there are thousands here who are criminals, or not paying taxes, or are a menace to society in general are running around waving Mexican flags and protesting our steenkeen system-- are not even considered for deportation.
    Why is it that ICE only picks on the good people? This is typical of our insane, totally screwed-up justice system !!

  • JohnJacobJingleHeimerSchmidt Beverly Hills, CA
    June 15, 2011 1:18 p.m.

    If you try to determine a fellow LDS member's faithfulness, you will answer to the Holy one of Israel, and he employeth NO servant. You will be judged accordingly for thinking you can assume the Lord's role.

  • donn layton, UT
    June 15, 2011 1:18 p.m.

    Janet said, Ephesians 2:19: "Now therefore ye are no more strangers and foreigners, but fellow citizens with the saints, and of the household of God." Refers to gentiles(Ephesians)who are now Christians.

    In Arizona: see, Romans 13:1-6 Pauls explains authority, some excerpts:
    He who rebels against the authority is rebelling against what God has instituted, and those who do will bring judgment on themselves.(Romans 13:2 NIV)
    Therefore it is necessary to submit to the authorities ,not because of possible punishment, but also because of conscience. (Romans 13:4 NIV)Copied by The Articles of faith #12.

  • Madden Herriman, UT
    June 15, 2011 1:19 p.m.

    Fix the legal immigration already! These are the kinds of people we WANT to keep.

    The US has so many willing to come, it is like having the first 100 picks of the NFL draft, yet we allow our border to be violated by crooks while we (at random) pick up illegals like this man who clearly should be our bottom priority.

  • Ahge DENVER, CO
    June 15, 2011 1:20 p.m.

    Chances are he would have been granted citizenship by now if he had persisted with his initial application.

  • altahoops Provo, UT
    June 15, 2011 1:24 p.m.

    To those who are claiming that the current immigration laws are not sacrosanct and that illegal aliens don't believe the laws are enforced, let me ask you this:

    If this is true, why the need to sneak into the country? If they truly believe our immigration laws are not in force, why not just let the fine folks at the border crossing know you are moving to the U.S. and don't intend to leave?

    Judging from the hundreds of thousands of illegal aliens (Mexican and Canadian Nationals) who sneak across the border in the dead of night, I'd have to say the above comments are patently false.

  • LittleQT Littleton, CO
    June 15, 2011 1:29 p.m.

    A simple solution to our immigration mess is to require all persons to possess and carry a valid passport. My son is currently employed in Australia. You had better believe that he was not allowed to board a flight from the US without showing his passport, having an electronic visa (expiring 12 months from its issue date), and a return date at the end of his employment. I am confident it will be enforced in Australia. He must carry his passport with him. As tourists or employees in a foreign country we follow the rules they set, yet as citizens in this country we whine that obtaining a passport is too costly or too difficult.
    In a foreign country we recognize our need to carry our passport. We should require one for all citizens here. Those who complain will still have to comply.
    More importantly, those who cannot obtain a US passport will be easily identified and can then be dealt with as the law demands.

  • gsa RIVERTON, UT
    June 15, 2011 1:33 p.m.

    Living in a certain geographical area is not morally wrong.

  • cg1020cg ABERDEEN, WA
    June 15, 2011 1:41 p.m.

    Is this person worthy to have a temple recommend or hold a church calling? This is not for me to question or to judge. I have faith that the church leaders have made the correct decision and I will support them. I dont always agree or want to do what the church ask, so being a simple man, I follow with faith. So I have faith that the church leadership did it for a valid reason and that is good enough for me.

  • JohnJacobJingleHeimerSchmidt Beverly Hills, CA
    June 15, 2011 1:45 p.m.

    Dnews moderator, post does not violate your terms.

    Translated from a recently discovered printed artifact from the Wampanoag tribe, who occupied modern day Massachusetts circa 1620 when the Pilgrims arrived...

    I don't know about you, but I've had enough of these lazy immigrants turning our country into their own welfare state. Wake up people!

    They show up with 90 sometimes 100 in a single ship cabin. They make no effort to learn the language. They never bathe. They carry all kinds of diseases. And they rely on honest, bead-and-shell paying Wampanoag to take care of them!

    Just the other day I was trading some wampum with one of these shoe wearers and he starts talking to me in English. English! I said, "Hey, you coat-wearing freak! Around here we speak Wampanoag. W-A-M-P-A-N-O-A-G!" Of course, he just stares at me like an idiot.

    Look, they're not all bad. Some of my good friends are Pilgrims. But we need to think about building a fence. A big ol' mud fence. Otherwise, don't come crying to me when we're all eating with forks and speaking English in 10 years.

  • cymrul West Valley City, UT
    June 15, 2011 1:49 p.m.

    Wait..this guy LIVED here for 20 YEARS and never took steps to become a citizen, make things legal and we are supposed to feel sorry for him because he got caught breaking the law?? Sorry. Not going to happen.

  • JeanPierre Mesa, AZ
    June 15, 2011 2:37 p.m.

    Did anyone already a U.S. citizen offer to sponsor either of these men as legal immigrants ?

  • BP Salt Lake City, UT
    June 15, 2011 3:20 p.m.

    Having been to Guatemala multiple times, I hope this family is well connected with people there. If they are not, I have serious concerns about their safety.

    And Guatemala is one of the safest Central American nations.

    It's just that when people get deported to their "home" country, they are often targets of kidnappings and murders. That's just the sad truth about these situations.

  • USAlover Salt Lake City, UT
    June 15, 2011 3:20 p.m.

    Oldcougar,

    I actually approach these threads will the desire to learn and hear diferent viewpoints. Over the course of time, I can say I've learned, changed opinions and have new insights because of reading these kind of comments.

    When the LDS church issued the Manifesto abolishing the practice of polygamy to put the Church in line with the law of the country, families were torn apart, children left fatherless, and wives without husbands. I know this, because my ancestors were among the affected as my grandfather lay imprisoned in the Sugar House penitentiary. His journals revealed how tormented he was leave his other wives whom he loved and cared for over the years. Regardless, the Church put itself in line with the law and was able to progress.

    In every way, I sustain the President of the Church, but was hoping other lay people could help me understand better perhaps something I don't. Your condescending opinion is not what I'm looking for. I'm happy to proceed in the manner my leaders have asked...to the letter.

  • Twin Lights Louisville, KY
    June 15, 2011 4:41 p.m.

    USALover,

    I think a lot of good members are conflicted here.

    We all know that hopping the border is illegal. The question I have looked at is why do we have 12 million folks here illegally? It didn't happen overnight.

    It's not just lax border enforcement or highly motivated illegal immigrants from failed states. It's due to de facto national policy.

    Until recently, we have approached border enforcement with a wink and a nod. Essentially saying to those south of the border "you really can't cross the border but if you do there are jobs waiting for you".

    Despite what the law says, our national policy has been to allow significant illegal immigration. This has been from both parties and over several administrations.

    So, now we have folks who have been here for a decade or more, have steady jobs, good families and established homes.

    They are here partly due to the failure of our nation to have a coherent immigration policy. We should not punish those who took our tacit invitation to work here. I think the church simply recognizes the political realities and tries to minister to the flock.

  • Brer Rabbit Spanish Fork, UT
    June 15, 2011 5:06 p.m.

    So, if we allow all of the "good" people that are able to illegally cross our borders or stay in the U.S. in violation of their visa, where would it end? 10 million 20 million, even 50 million a year, and there would still be be border jumpers and visa overstayers. How would we defend our border if all of the "Good" illegal aliens were allowed to stay? Think this amnesty thing to its logical end, and it doesn't look good for the United States.

    As for being "Good," remember that all of those with a visitor or temporary visa promised when interviewed at the consulate or embassy that they would return within the visa time limit. They also agreed when they signed for the visa that they would return as required. So, they are Not so "Good" but liars. We have enough American liars we don't need to import them.

  • one day... South Jordan, UT
    June 15, 2011 5:22 p.m.

    to CJ | 9:13 a.m. June 15, 2011
    Murray, UT...

    "Our immigration laws are just fine" ok, so that's why immigration is such a big mess right now. Your PRIDE doesn't resolve the issue, reform is needed, everyone knows that/ "And YES WE CAN expel millions of illegals, it has been done by three Presidents" Who and how many? I can guess that you have more than 40 millions illegals (and not just from south of the border)/ " Illegals are destroying the state and nation, looting our treasuries and taking jobs away from Americans and bla, bla, blah etc" Looting? I haven't seen people that work more than the mexicans, low rate pay and no benefits at all! paid by people like you! you sound like when the germans were talking about the jews because they were destroying the country and taking jobs, same comments, sad but true./ "The last thing we need is people like you out there waving the white flag while our nation is being overrun with illegals" I hope one day we can understand that we need each other, do you know huch much money the contry can make out of this? nope

  • M.Sanchez Salt Lake City, Utah
    June 15, 2011 5:45 p.m.

    If there were truly compassionate individuals and organizations in Utah,they would have aided this family by sponsoring them.

    Why after all this time was that not done?

  • KC Mormon Edgerton, KS
    June 15, 2011 7:44 p.m.

    There is actually one very big solution to this problem that many people overlook. ENFORCE the laws against hiring illegals. Those who are here illegally are only here because they can afford to be here. This means that they fall into one of two groups. First they are working under the table and the employers know this or second they are committing identity fraud. If it is the first then the employer should have a very large fine for the first offence (if multiple illegals are involved in this offense then jail time for each member of management who knew) and loss of business license for second offence. This will make it to risky to knowingly hire illegals. For the second group they have committed a felony and should be deported. NO RELEASE UNTILE DEPORTATION HEARING. With very few jobs most will self deport for lack of funds.

  • KC Mormon Edgerton, KS
    June 15, 2011 7:55 p.m.

    Now for the second part of the solution. With the illegals self deporting you than start a strict guest worker program. Each person is given a work visa for a specific length of time. Anyone under 6 moths can NOT bring family members with them unless they have their own work visa. They are required to return to their own country at the end of the visa to reapply. Failure to return would be a 5 year ban from obtaining another visa for first offence and life time for a second.
    The third part is that we Americans must be willing to back to doing hard labor without being paid extremely high wages. This means we do not get a new computer every 6 months or a new cell phone every 6 months. We actually make due with the things we have rather than trying to be better than our neighbors.
    For those who say that we do not let enough immigrants in how do you think the illegals effect that number? The more that come illegally the fewer that are allowed legally. So they effect that number.

  • Dadof5sons Montesano, WA
    June 15, 2011 8:11 p.m.

    We believe in being subject to kings, presidents, rulers, and magistrates, in obeying, honoring, and sustaining the law.
    Kinda self explanatory don't you think?

  • Anti Bush-Obama Washington, DC
    June 15, 2011 8:21 p.m.

    Unfortunatley the law has to be enforced or we will have anarchy. This is the neocon and neoliberal vision of America.

    Illegals coming here by the thousands everyday. Government expansion will be enforced to the point of not even having privacy in your own home. The national debt will be hopelessly high and unable to be paid off no matter what. We will be engaged in so many wars across the country that will dwarf the Nazi regime. We will have police everywhere in tanks patroling our streets and everybody in the country will be labelled a terrorist.

  • Anti Bush-Obama Washington, DC
    June 15, 2011 8:25 p.m.

    The missionary handbook states that we never suggest nor incourage immigration. I think this makes the church's position on this matter very clear.

  • Tommy2Shoes Lehi, UT
    June 15, 2011 11:22 p.m.

    Millions of illegals have entered our lands seeking better lives for their families. They usually start at the bottom of the workforce and take minimum labor rates or less. This provides an excess of laborers seeking lower paying jobs, thus employers don't have to raise wages and benefits to attract our current workforce. Eventually we deal with the problem by giving them amnesty and the cycle repeats itself. Our nation has high unemployment yet they still come. We cannot keep them out unless we want to become like East Germany and build secure walls and shoot to kill. Truly King Solomon could solve this issue, but we don't have any wise men as politicians. Maybe the only solution is to create one nation under God for all of the Americas.

  • Miss Piggie SLC, Utah
    June 16, 2011 12:23 a.m.

    @DaleC: "When told the people were starving and had no bread, Marie Antoinette reportedly said, "Let them eat cake!" Is that how we feel?"

    We have 15 million unemployed Americans in this country. Would you rather have illegal foreigners eating cake or our unemployed?

    ------------------------

    @MormonDem: "Also, it's rather amusing to see folks telling the brethren how to interpret the 'honesty' TR question while simultaneously testing the boundaries of the 'sustain the leaders of the Church' TR question by opposing the Church's immigration policy."

    Too funny! Church leaders' immigration policy is: Love thy neighbor; the importance of keeping families intact; and the federal governments obligation to secure its border.

    No one is opposing Church immigration policy. Illegals can be loved as they are lovingly sent home. The families can be kept intact as they gather to leave as a family. And as far as I am aware, reviewing the degree of border security or lack thereof is not an issue discussed in the TR interview.

  • Sarah B SLC, UT
    June 16, 2011 12:32 a.m.

    sadly, we had a very unfortunate experience with a branch president of a spanish speaking branch here. His branch activity was in serious breach of handbook instructions as well as stepping on the toes of those who had legitimately reserved the building. He was rude, plain and simple and was insisting they'd done nothing wrong. Apparently he thought they didn't have the follow the same rules and the rest of us. I'm sorry this man's family has to be temporarily separated, but rules are rules and that's something very young children learn. Follow the rules and you'll be much happier.

  • JJL Eugene, OR
    June 16, 2011 1:15 a.m.

    1847 - Mormon pioneers led by Brigham Young enter the Salt Lake Valley, Mexico.

    How many of the above posters have ever broken the speed limit? Most of the above posters don't know the distinction between the violation of a regulatory law - malum prohibitum and the violation of a moral law, malum in se.

    Extreme example - What if Congress passed a law prohibiting private prayer in homes? How many of the above posters would "break the law" and still be considered criminals?

  • raybies Layton, UT
    June 16, 2011 6:11 a.m.

    I'm sorry for these men. Immigration laws need to change to accomodate people like this.

  • Timj South Jordan, UT
    June 16, 2011 6:39 a.m.

    To those who think the church's stance on immigration can be understood from a missionary handbook (which obviously only applies to missionaries), from the 12th Article of Faith, or from other sources, might I recommend you go to the church Newsroom and look at the latest statements on immigration. The church clearly supports what many of you would call amnesty (allowing undocumented immigrants to become legal and remain in the U.S.) Another statement clearly states that the worthiness of undocumented immigrants is an issue for their bishop, not members-at-large.

    If this bothers you, you have 3 options:
    1. Realize you disagree with the church on this issue, and realize that it's okay to disagree with the church on some issues.
    2. Get mad at the church over the issue and leave.
    3. Realize your ideas might be wrong and think about changing your views.

  • Neanderthal SLC, Utah
    June 16, 2011 8:40 a.m.

    @Timj: "The church clearly supports what many of you would call amnesty (allowing undocumented immigrants to become legal and remain in the U.S.)"

    If that be the case the Church is conflicted because it has a rule about obeying, honoring, and sustaining laws. Church members who are in this country without proper documentation either becasue they sneaked across the border or because they came here on a legal visa but overstayed, are not obeying, honoring, and sustaining the law. The Church cannot have "Marie Antonette's" cake and eat it too.

  • Good Will Indio, CA
    June 16, 2011 9:37 a.m.

    Perhaps if these families had been related to President Obama, they could have stayed in the U.S. forever, while living in publicly-subsidized housing. Heck! They even might have attended his inauguration and visited the White House!

    I guess they weren't "illegal" enough.

  • 1Infidel APO, AE
    June 16, 2011 10:35 a.m.

    I have seen nothing xenophobic in the comments so far. Those dishing out the word are either demonstrating a new personal acquisition of and lack of understanding just enough to (mis)use a new $0.25 word, or they are trying to inflate/change the meaning, or to throw out the race card. We see libs and the media doing this all the time with "extremist" and "marriage."

    I also reject that more than a handful of people here are judging the hearts and intent of the two families portrayed here as victims by the slant of the writer. Most posts are criticizing either the process, the law, or the lack or attempts at enforcement thereof. Quoting scriptures about judgment is asinine in this context - we make necessary and protective judgments every day, and in this case, citizens are making judgments about laws, policies, processes, statements that are by necessity discriminatory and which are the process by which one educates and creates thought processes used in society for when and how we vote, or spend, or attend, or support our choices. Nearly no one has condemned either family head in any eternal sense, nor made racist or xenophobic comments.

  • JohnJacobJingleHeimerSchmidt Beverly Hills, CA
    June 16, 2011 11:15 a.m.

    Isn't it ironic that the LDS CHurch survived because they came to Salt Lake City, which was MEXICO? I highly doubt there would be as much resistance to this if SLC had the same number of illegal Canadian immigrants. This is a race issue.

  • Gerard Regnier FREMONT, CA
    June 16, 2011 3:20 p.m.

    I am also an immigrant to the USA. However, I followed the immigration laws of the Uninted States and eventually became a US Citizen. I am also a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints. Why couldn't these people have done the same thing?
    If people come to this country and chose not to comply with its immigration laws, then they are, in fact, breaking the law and should be dealt with accordingly. If an individual holds a high position within the LDS church, it does not and should not cover up the fact that they are in this country illegally. If they are breaking the laws of this land, it seems incomprehensible how they are allowed to rise to high positions within the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints and probably hold valid Temple Recommends. There is something wrong with this picture.
    I am miffed by people trying to soften the offence of violating immigration laws by calling themselves "un-documented immigrants." The fact is, they are law breaking "illegal immigrants" and should be deported.

  • artychart Portland, OR
    June 16, 2011 4:27 p.m.

    MormonDem suggests immigration laws are not liberal enough. Say No to BO says "just a decade ago we had 3-4 million illegal aliens. Now we have 12 million+," suggesting laws are too liberal, haven't been enforced or are unenforceable.

    Huh? immigration laws? 8-9 million entering any country is a "boots on the ground" invasion. (Compare numbers from report during similar time frame suggesting US peaked at 187,900 boots on the ground in FY2008 for both Iraq/Afghanistan at fas dotorg forwardslash sgp/crs/natsec/R40682.pdf).

    Boots need to be sent back to respective native grounds as quickly and humanely as possible. Denial free, too--the US can't sustain this problem financially. We're broke and aliens are part of the problem.

    Kissing, hugging, tearfully waving good-bye or providing resources for relocation costs can be a personal choice or an ideal service project for mercifully-minded US individuals, small communities or religious groups that want to use donated resources to help their favorite boots get moving quickly.

  • Maryquilter Farmington, UT
    June 16, 2011 4:46 p.m.

    Thank you JJL from Eugene, OR. I am a convert and have a strong testimony of the gospel of Jesus Christ, but sometimes I have a hard time feeling positively about being affiliated with the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints when I hear all of these judgmental, black and white responses to life. So much of life is gray and requires sincere study, pondering, and meditation to find the truth and for me there are occasions when I may find it difficult to agree with all political decisions mainstream Mormons follow. Do I feel bad about questioning and searching; no. Do I get frustrated with church members who seem to rattle off glib opinions about things they either know little about or have taken little time to examine- yes. Wish I could quote the exact statement by Brigham Young where he says he would rather have members question doctrine and search out answers than those who seemingly follow blindly like sheep. Immigration is a touch subject, but I personally feel we make it too hard for honest, hardworking aliens to work here legally and many come only because they cannot support their families in their country.

  • frogguy PROVO, UT
    June 16, 2011 5:27 p.m.

    "had not committed any crime?" Who are they kidding? Just being here illegally is a crime! It's a misdemeanor the first time you enter the country illegally, and a felony on each subsequent entries! Working involves either a social security number that isn't yours, or being compensated "under the table," both of which are crimes. How could anyone who is here illegally NOT have committed any crime!

    Here's the deal. It doesn't matter that these were LDS branch presidents. That's no reason to let them stay. In fact, they should be ashamed for lying to their LDS leaders. When I was in the bishopric and stake presidency, I was never given any exemptions to laws for that reason or any other. If I sped, I got a ticket. If I had committed a felony I would have spent time in prison.

    The US is not and CANNOT be the free haven to the world. We cannot afford it and we should not destroy our country and our freedoms trying to do it.

  • Miss Piggie SLC, Utah
    June 16, 2011 5:54 p.m.

    @Good Will: "Perhaps if these families had been related to President Obama, they could have stayed in the U.S. forever..."

    Good point, Good Will. Obama's aunt, who was asked to leave years ago, is still in this country. Makes you wonder if Eric Holder, OBama's AG, had anything to do with it.

  • SoCalChris Riverside, CA
    June 16, 2011 5:59 p.m.

    I don't understand why so many have trouble reconciling the 12th AOF with the Church's statement. What's wrong with providing a way for those who have broken immigration laws with "squaring" themselves with the law as the Church states? Why is deportation and uprooting lives the only solution? I agree with Maryquilter. Things can't always be decided by nice neat formulas. I keep being reminded of Inspector Javert finding it impossible to cut Jean Valjean any kind of slack. (There's a lot that can be learned about being Christlike from Les Miserables IMO.) I applaud those who have immigrated here the right way, but I understand that's not always possible. Not many of us know for sure what decision we would make in similar circumstances. Many of these individuals came here when the country was essentially turning a blind eye and have established lives here. Open hostility to such a huge segment of society isn't good, especially when it's identified mostly with one ethnic group. We have to find a way to deal with it that is practical, civil and compassionate.

  • IdahoStranger NEWDALE, ID
    June 16, 2011 6:35 p.m.

    Reply to the comments by Cache Valley Native (6:57 14 June):

    Just want to point out that the story is NOT over! While there is no question that this is a severe trial in their lives, I believe that our Father in Heaven will watch over them as they do what is right to the best of their abilities and that in the end, things will work out for the best. Google "Young Love in Rexburg" to see how it is working out for another couple who self reported and did the right thing. I will continue to pray for them and am sure that many of you will also.

    Also you may want to Google "Gumballs and Immigration" to get a more complete picture about Immigration, both illegal and legal.

    I read a story about a Mormon lady who went to a temple to attend a wedding and discovered that her temple recommend had expired. After launching into all the reasons why she should be let in anyway, the desk official simply bowed his head and quietly said "Expired is expired". By the same token, "Illegal is illegal."

  • Voice Saint George, UT
    June 16, 2011 6:49 p.m.

    SoCalChris--you said, "Not many of us know for sure what decision we would make in similar circumstances. Many of these individuals came here when the country was essentially turning a blind eye and have established lives here."

    I absolutely know that I would not stay illegally in another country, state, house, or place of business. When a store closes I leave. I don't hunt out of season. I don't go sleep in my neighbors houses when they are on vacation. I take my passport and get it stamped when I go to another country and I leave on time.

    I would not get in a marriage and have children knowing I had to watch out for the law because if I got arrested I would not be able to raise my children, provide for them, and take care of them.

    As to your statement that they came when there/here was a "blind eye..."
    Entitlement at its finest. If you really believe doing something is okay if no one is watching please get info on entitlement. Richard Eyre has a book coming out on it. There is plenty of info already written this topic. Look

  • SoCalChris Riverside, CA
    June 16, 2011 7:51 p.m.

    Voice,

    Where did I say it's OK to do something wrong when no one is looking? I'm saying that the decision some people may have made may be understandable and not that nefarious. What I meant was there was time when there was almost an implied invitation to come to this country. If I had been born in a corrupt place with little opportunity across the border from the best country in the world and virtually no way to come here legally I can't say for sure what I would have done. The illegals I see all the time in So Cal don't seem to have an entitlement mentality. Far from it. I don't see any panhandling. Selling oranges, mowing lawns, looking for work outside Home Depot, but I don't see any asking for handouts.

    I'm glad to hear you never do anything wrong like that. If everyone had those kind of standards the world would be a much better place.

  • JJL Eugene, OR
    June 16, 2011 9:10 p.m.

    Apparently, my point about LDS immigrants led by my church's 2nd prophet Brigham Young, settling down in Mexico didn't persuade most of the subsequent posters above.

    Let's try another concrete example of how the 12th Article of Faith is applied in certain circumstances: Brigham Young arrested for bigamy and the following from Wikipedia:

    "The Morrill Anti-Bigamy Act (37th United States Congress, Sess. 2., ch. 126, 12 Stat. 501) was a federal enactment of the United States Congress that was signed into law on July 8, 1862 by President Abraham Lincoln. Sponsored by Justin Smith Morrill of Vermont, the act banned bigamy and limited church and non-profit ownership in any territory of the United States to $50,000.

    The act was designed to target the Mormon practice of plural marriage and the property dominance of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in the Utah Territory. The measure had no funds allocated for enforcement, and Lincoln choose not to enforce this law; instead Lincoln gave Brigham Young tacit permission to ignore the Morrill Act in exchange for not becoming involved with the Civil War."

    I guess BY and Honest Abe were criminals too.

  • SomeoneAgain ONAWA, IA
    June 16, 2011 9:12 p.m.

    The argument that illegal immigrants are in the wrong because they are breaking the law is tired and virtually irrelevant. The law is broken. It has been for years. Agriculture didn't want immigrants made legal and that prevented new immigration laws. Now there are 11 million illegal immigrants. Deporting them all would be the largest forced migration in history. The only solution is to acknowledge that the system is broken and make new laws dealing with the situation as it is.

    A country who won't allow new immigrants the chance for a better life is becoming selfish and stagnant. Demography is the future and the future belongs to what were minorities. It's something you can't change, you can only adapt to. I like diversity in my friends and acquaintances. I admire the work ethic of immigrants. I would like them to have the same opportunities my immigrant ancestors did. Otherwise I am no better than those who treated immigrants from Europe poorly.

    By the Golden Rule I would let any hard-working, upstanding immigrant come to this country to try for a better life. Anyone would try to leave the violence and other problems of Latin America.

  • wrz SLC, Utah
    June 16, 2011 9:25 p.m.

    @SoCalChris:

    "I don't understand why so many have trouble reconciling the 12th AOF with the Church's statement. What's wrong with providing a way for those who have broken immigration laws with "squaring" themselves with... Church/state laws?"

    There is a way... leave, file citizenship papers, and get in line. There are millions who want in and are doing it the right way.

    "Why is deportation... the only solution?"

    We tried the other way in 1986 and it backfired. We now have 15 million illegals wanting the some goodies.

    "I applaud those who have immigrated here the right way, but I understand that's not always possible."

    That's becasue we have immigration policies and quotas. Illegals knock it out of kilter.

    "Not many of us know for sure what decision we would make in similar circumstances."

    I know... When I walk by a bank I have this urge to rob it. I need money more than the bank does.

    "Open hostility to such a huge segment of society isn't good..."

    'Huge segment' are the operative words. At the rate we are going, we will soon be an Hispanic country. Are you ready for Spanish to be our primary language?

  • Wastintime Los Angeles, CA
    June 16, 2011 10:28 p.m.

    @SomeoneAgain - you say immigration law is "broken" so we shouldn't follow it. I tend to agree, but in my opinion we have many "broken" laws. Like speed limits for instance. Hardly anybody follows them so in my opinion they are "broken" and we should be able to drive as fast as we want all the time. Do you agree? Millions of Americans use illicit drugs, so obviously our narcotics laws are "broken" and all drugs should be legal. I could go on and on. My point is that my list of obviously "broken" laws is probably different from yours. Perhaps there needs to be a process for sorting out which ones really need to followed (and which ones don't) though rather than having everybody disregard the ones they don't agree with.

  • Say No to BO Mapleton, UT
    June 16, 2011 10:58 p.m.

    I find it odd that my comment about the church joining the Mexican-American War in 1846 (and fighting for the United States) was not acceptable to the censors at DN. Perhaps they thought the 500 soldiers were mercenaries. Thomas Kane would be surprised to hear that.

  • CJ Murray, UT
    June 17, 2011 1:04 a.m.

    Twice now the DN has approved comments only to later deny them. Who exactly do you have making these decisions? I am starting to think you have an Amnesty Nazi who withdraws any comments that don't fit your open borders, lawless, give away the country approach to illegal aliens and throw legal Americans under the bus approach on this issue.

  • krissy Sterling, VA
    June 17, 2011 7:28 a.m.

    This is a good example of why some of just don't sustain church leaders anymore. My careful thought and meditaion and prayer has lead me to a very different conclusion. No matter how many times I pray about it, harboring illegal aliens and allowing them to break the law is not right. I do disagree with the "brethern" and I do not believe that their authority trumps my own conscience.

  • jeanne47 OREM, UT
    June 17, 2011 8:35 a.m.

    I've been a member of the Church for 48 years and came to this country legally. The Church used to emphasize obeying the law of the land. If we could not come legally, we had to stay in our country of origin to "build up Zion" there. PERIOD! Does the fact that the Church baptizes more people in South and Central America more than anywhere else, account for its surprising and disturbing change of position?
    Let's not forget how the practice of polygamy (contrary to the law of the land) got us in so much trouble and misery until a prophet decided it was time to return to observing the rule of law. The Church has been striving ever since. Does it want to go on a slippery slope again. We look like fools talking from both sides of the mouth:"we support the law of the land but for our own purposes, we will ignore it!". Sad and very disturbing!
    What a confusing message to our young people: you have to keep the commandments, but if there is 1 or 2 that you don't like, just ignore it...

  • jeanne47 OREM, UT
    June 17, 2011 9:37 a.m.

    OOPS! I meant thriving and not striving.

  • tom_e Kaysville, UT
    June 17, 2011 9:46 a.m.

    It is so good that Guatemala and El Salvador have set up guest worker programs. Their economies have really been hit hard by the world wide recession. This action can only help these countries.

  • Who isn't immigrant descendant Inland Empire, CA
    June 17, 2011 9:56 a.m.

    A friend from Texas is a fosterparent who gets paid by the goverment to watch children whose parents have been deported. There is no way for these parents to come back and claim their American kids. How can deporting all the illegal immigrants will help the country? What would happen to all the kids left behind? Wouldn't be better to find a way of securing the border but allowing the decent working people stay?

  • SoCalChris Riverside, CA
    June 17, 2011 9:59 a.m.

    "The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints discourages its members from entering any country without legal documentation, and from deliberately overstaying legal travel visas."

    The Church statement does not encourage illegal behavior. What it encourages is compassion and civility.

  • Patrick Henry West Jordan, UT
    June 17, 2011 12:15 p.m.

    Tony Yapias says this man committed no crime? Oh I don't know...how about being in this country illegally? How is that for one Tony.

    Shesh Tony GO HOME. You and your ilk that support illegal immigration are not welcome here.

  • oldcougar Orem, UT
    June 17, 2011 2:05 p.m.

    @ In Arizona:

    You received good counsel. I suggest you abide by it.

  • Maryquilter Farmington, UT
    June 17, 2011 7:37 p.m.

    @Someone Again, JJL, and So Cal Chris-

    Way to go. Your comments give me hope for intelligent, open-minded Latter Day Saints in this country. I was beginning to wonder if there were any people like you on this site. The ideas you have shared have uplifted me, but I am afraid they are falling on predominantly deaf ears. I look forward to hearing from you on future Deseret News articles.

  • I M LDS 2 Provo, UT
    June 18, 2011 9:28 a.m.

    The Church is correct. We should be compassionate and civil... as we do all we can to fight amnesty and deport illegals.

    That means smile and think happy thoughts while you call ICE about that neighbor of yours.

  • sg newhall, CA
    June 18, 2011 12:55 p.m.

    I have no sympathy for this family. They knew coming here was against the law. The church should have known and should not have allowed them to remain let alone call him to a church leadership position. If he's qualified to be a leader here, then he should be so in his home country. His wife makes it sound like he didn't to anything wrong to be chained "like a criminal" as he was being deported. Ahhh, sorry, but he was/is a criminal, he is illegally here, as well as his entire family. To keep them together deportation for all of them. Confiscate everything they acquired while living here and auction them off. It is time that Utah and every other state that harbors illegals be fined or sued, and that includes religions that knowingly encourage the breaking of laws by establishing facilities et al that instills comfort and a sense of safety in our country. No illegal should feel safe in living here. Keep looking over your shoulder because it is time to deport.

  • Gerard Regnier FREMONT, CA
    June 18, 2011 10:00 p.m.

    The LDS Church has issued a statement on 10 June, 20011 about immigration. It states that it is the responsibility of Church Members to avoid being judgmental. I agree. That's why we have a court system of competent jurisdiction. Our Judicial system stands in judgment of the laws of immigration in the USA and not us as individuals. However, that same legal system protects our right as individuals to voice our beliefs and opinions without fear of retribution.

    I believe that it is also the responsibility of Church Members to not deliberately violate existing immigration laws in order to stay in this country.
    How is deliberately violating immigration laws not in conflict with the 12th article of Faith?

    The Church also stated that we should treat each other as children of God. (I personally believe this to be a profound truth). This was great council for everyone, even for non members of the LDS Church.
    They also stated:
    "The Church supports an approach where undocumented immigrants are allowed to square themselves with the law and continue to work without this necessarily leading to citizenship."
    Are they talking about the standard work visa and "Green Card"?

  • Gerard Regnier FREMONT, CA
    June 18, 2011 10:03 p.m.

    It further stated:
    "In furtherance of needed immigration reform in the United States, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints supports a balanced and civil approach to a challenging problem, fully consistent with its tradition of compassion, its reverence for family, and its commitment to law."
    Specifically, what articles of Immigration reform are they referring to?

    First of all, is it true that a US court determined that the two people in question were residing in this country illegally? Additionally, did the court determine that they had sufficient time to "square themselves with the law"? If so, why should the fault be with the "reform lacking" immigration system of the United States?

    Another issue raised was:
    What do we do with the estimated 12 Million illegal immigrants now residing in the USA? The statement also mentioned that unchecked and unregulated flow of illegal (undocumented) immigrants may destabilize society, ultimately causing it to become unsustainable. (It seems that California has surpassed that "unsustainable" threshold). Some people argue that this condition is not caused by illegal (undocumented) immigrants. How can large numbers of illegal immigrants coming into this country possibly help to stabilize its economy?

  • anti-liar Salt Lake City, UT
    July 1, 2011 5:40 p.m.

    Update:

    In an open letter written to the people of Cache Valley by one of the branch presidents and published the other day by HJNews (Cache Valley), Mr. Carias proceeds to accuse residents of Cache Valley of racism and hypocrisy.

    A few excerpts:

    "I want the people of Cache Valley to know that when I left, I left with a broken heart knowing that Cache Valley which is supposed to be a sanctuary and refuge for all Latter-day Saints is really a place where, instead of practicing clean, pure religion, there are many judges, judging very harshly, dictating sentences with no love toward their fellow men."

    ***

    "...our Anglo Saxon brethren. I didnt know the majority of them have racist feelings..."

    ***

    "Its really sad to know that in this 21st century racism is alive and well."

    ***

    "You are the people who supposedly understand the Gospel of Jesus Christ, but you do not practice it...and we find that you yourselves are the worst racists..."

    ***

    "I do not judge you; judgment belongs to our Father in Heaven. I pray for the people that rejoice in hurting and inflicting so much pain to others."

  • anti-liar Salt Lake City, UT
    July 1, 2011 7:05 p.m.

    "...compassionate and civil..."

    The use of these terms in the context of the current illegal-immigration discussion is specious. There is no glaring "compassion" or "civility" or "cruel or unusual punishment" problem in this country when it comes to the treatment of illegal aliens. Truth be told, they really are given the red carpet treatment in this country. Even the few who are deported are given ample time to get their affairs in order.

    So why bring up these terms "compassion" and "civil?"

    They are brought up in order to falsely lead the gullible into thinking that to be "compassionate" and to be "civil" is to endorse illegal behavior and to turn a blind eye to the illegal-alien invasion and plundering of America.