“FOR NOW, WE ARE HER FAMILY”
MORE THAN A DOZEN communities of women religious have worked together in Illinois to create a place of safety for asylum-seeking young women who have aged out of federal children’s detention centers. Female asylum seekers, ages 18-22—who would otherwise have been shackled and takento adult detention centers—are instead being welcomed into Bethany House of Hospitality in the Chicago-land area.
“ ‘Elizabeth’ arrived in the U.S. alone after her father died crossing the Rio Grande,” Dominican Sister
Kathlyn Mulcahy, O.P. says of one Bethany House guest. “Efforts to find her remaining family in Angola have
been unsuccessful, but she holds out hope. For now, we at Bethany House are her family as she works on her
high school diploma.”
Mulcahy serves as a live-in house coordinator on the weekends while other sisters take over her duties
during the week.
“Being here at Bethany House is a way to stand in solidarity with women from around the world,” Mulcahy states. “They are living signs of the brokenness of our world, yes, but they are also living signs of hope andcourage working to overcome that brokenness. Their lives here proclaim that a new story is possible, onewhere women from around the world live and work together to support one another and bring new possibility into being.”
CATHOLIC SISTERS cametogether in 2017 to foundand support Bethany Houseof Hospitality in the Chicagosuburbs. The house is ashelter for young femaleasylum seekers. Without it,they would be held in adultdetention centers. Picturedhere are members of theboard of Bethany House ofHospitality.
COUR TES Y OF BE THANY HOUSE OF HOSPITALITY