The Chancery will be closed at Noon, Wednesday, November 25th,
and will reopen on Monday, November 30th.
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Greetings from
Bishop Amos

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Iowa Catholic Conference statement
on Syrian refugees
Nov. 17, 2015

The recent movement of 27 governors in the United States to apparently oppose entrance to Syrian refugees to their respective states (CNN, 11/16/2015) revives an embarrassing experience in our country’s history.

During World War II, those of Japanese nationality in the United States were rounded up and placed in confinement. In the aftermath of World War II, apologies and compensation were accorded to the victims of such unfortunate actions. As frequently occurs to families or nationalities, guilt was attributed by association.

In line with the long-standing American tradition, we should strive to determine how we can serve so many who are desperately seeking a new life away from terror and persecution.

The Catholic Church in Iowa has a decades-long history in assisting with the resettlement of refugees from across the globe. Out of respect for human life and dignity, welcoming the homeless and the stranger is a fundamental part of our faith. Refugees are typically among the most vulnerable people in the world, fleeing dangerous situations and looking to protect their families and children. They want to live a normal and safe life.

Each refugee must undergo a vetting process by the State Department and Homeland Security. This process includes personal interviews, extensive security checks in coordination with the National Counterterrorism Center, and pre-departure checks that occur between the initial interview and the date of travel.

Citizens of our country justifiably desire security. It will be achieved by searching out those identified with terrorism whether they be American, European, African, Asian, Middle Eastern or of any other ethnic and national origin. The federal government needs to be vigilant in regard to its responsibility to safeguard our communities against the despicable actions of terrorists.

We appreciate Gov. Branstad’s concern for the safety of Iowans and expect that we can continue to work with the state on a careful process of refugee resettlement. 

Most Rev. Michael Jackels, Archbishop of Dubuque
Most Rev. R. Walker Nickless, Bishop of Sioux City
Most Rev. Martin Amos, Bishop of Davenport
Most Rev. Richard Pates, Bishop of Des Moines


Bishops’ Migration Chair: U.S. Should Welcome Syrian Refugees, Work For Peace
Nov. 17, 2015
BALTIMORE -- Bishop Eusebio Elizondo, Chairman of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops’ (USCCB) Committee on Migration, issued a statement on Syrian refugees during the Bishops’ annual General Assembly in Baltimore Nov. 17.
Full text of the statement follows:
Statement on Syrian Refugees and the Attacks in Paris
On behalf of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops’ Committee on Migration, I offer my deepest condolences to the families of the victims of the November 13 attacks in Paris, France and to the French people.  I add my voice to all those condemning these attacks and my support to all who are working to ensure such attacks do not occur again—both in France and around the world.
I am disturbed, however, by calls from both federal and state officials for an end to the resettlement of Syrian refugees in the United States.  These refugees are fleeing terror themselves—violence like we have witnessed in Paris.  They are extremely vulnerable families, women, and children who are fleeing for their lives. We cannot and should not blame them for the actions of a terrorist organization.
Moreover, refugees to this country must pass security checks and multiple interviews before entering the United States—more than any arrival to the United States.  It can take up to two years for a refugee to pass through the whole vetting process.  We can look at strengthening the already stringent screening program, but we should continue to welcome those in desperate need.
Instead of using this tragedy to scapegoat all refugees, I call upon our public officials to work together to end the Syrian conflict peacefully so the close to 4 million Syrian refugees can return to their country and rebuild their homes.  Until that goal is achieved, we must work with the world community to provide safe haven to vulnerable and deserving refugees who are simply attempting to survive.  As a great nation, the United States must show leadership during this crisis and bring nations together to protect those in danger and bring an end to the conflicts in the Middle East.   


Extraordinary Jubilee
Year of Mercy

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Promise to Protect Video (mp4)
Pope Francis Quote
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Bishop's Safe Environment Letter 2015

FAQ about Pope Francis' Revision to the Marriage Annulment Process


Diocesan Prayer for 2015

Official prayer of the Diocese of Davenport, 2015
PDF: English | Spanish


Response from Bishop Amos to the Survey
for the Extraordinary Synod on the Family 2014

Response Document | The Catholic Messenger  Article




HHS Mandate
Diocese's HHS Mandate page
USCCB Page on HHS mandate (including legislative contacts)
Iowa Catholic Conference

Initiatives of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops
Religious Freedom
Marriage: Unique for a Reason
Research and Resources for the New Evangelization CARA Research November 2012

Abuse of Minors - The Church's Response

The Catholic Messenger video site
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Diocesan Planning Commission
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Bishop Amos' Vision Planning Video
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