Catholics throughout the Sacramento area have been pivotal in providing for 36 immigrants who were flown halfway across the country to the Capitol city by chartered planes under the false guise that job opportunities awaited them. “The outpouring of support for the 36 migrants who arrived in Sacramento in recent days has been inspiring and a reminder of our continued responsibility to protect human life and enhance human dignity through the works of mercy,” said Diocese of Sacramento Bishop Jaime Soto. Bishop Soto met with the first group of migrants on Monday, which departed El Paso, Tx., was flown to Sacramento, and then dropped off on the steps of the Diocese of Sacramento. The second plane was intercepted at the airport. The migrants who arrived were from Venezuela and Columbia and told officials they did not know where they had landed or where Sacramento was even located. Florida Governor Ron DeSantis’ office has claimed responsibility for the flights. “Using human beings as political pawns is inexcusable,” said California Catholic Conference Executive Director Kathleen Domingo. “Most migrants seek refuge in the U.S. to escape the human travesties in their own countries. Moving them from one side of the country to the other and, in some cases, away from the places they need to be to continue their immigration proceedings, is akin to trafficking. America is better than that.” Those wishing to assist the migrants and the thousands of others can contact their local Catholic Charities, which is on the front lines of providing services for the undocumented. “In caring for and supporting our brothers and sisters in need, we fulfill our obligations to be like the Good Samaritan who encounters the suffering with compassion, provides merciful care, and invites others to walk with the suffering on their journey to healing and wholeness,” Bishop Soto said.