Jesuit Father Sean Carroll told members of Congress on Wednesday that the United States current immigration system ran counter to the teachings of the Christian Bible.


He said at a hearing on immigration reform that the United States disturbingly and unjustly separated families. The hearing was convened by Rep. Raul M. Grijalva, a progressive Democrat from Arizona.

"With each passing day, we as a country continue to separate family members, through our immigration laws and our detention and deportation practices, contrary to the rhetoric of family values that permeates our political discourse," he remarked.

"Because of our current policies, the Applied Research Center's report 'Shattered Families' finds that 5,100 children are in foster care since they cannot be with a detained or deported parent. In the first six months of 2011, the United States government removed more than 46,000 mothers and fathers of U.S. citizen children. This reality falls far short of what Scripture teaches regarding care for the widow, the orphan and the stranger."

He was referring to Exodus 22:21-22, Deuteronomy 27:19, Zechariah 7:10, three verses in the Old Testament of the Bible that command the followers of God to protect immigrants and others.

"Our current policies essentially leave many children as orphans, wives and husbands as widows and widowers and the stranger deported across the border, away from their family members who need them so deeply."

The Jesuits -- members of a Catholic order called the Society of Jesus -- have gained international attention after Pope Francis became the first Jesuit pontiff.

Watch a portion of the testimony, uploaded to YouTube by JesuitNationalNews, below: