Rev. Felipe Gonzalez is a priest at Nativity Catholic Church in Brandon, Florida. He is also one of the 800,000 “Dreamers” whose immigration status is now in jeopardy following the Trump Administration’s plan to end the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) in March 2018.
Felipe’s mother brought him to the United States from Colombia at age eleven. After graduating from high school he enrolled at St. John Vianney Seminary School. From the age of five, Fr. Felipe knew he wanted to be a priest and was “conditionally” accepted at St. Vincent de Paul Regional Seminary, hoping his immigration status would be resolved.
In June 2012, President Obama signed DACA into law and Fr. Felipe was “elated.” He was ordained on May 21, 2016 at the Cathedral of St. Jude the Apostle. Fr. Felipe stated, “It was because of DACA that I was able to be ordained a priest and work in a parish.”
With his immigration status once again uncertain, Fr. Felipe remains optimistic…”I pray and hope that something will come out for us to be okay”…. “I have this great faith that somehow we will be able to get through this.”
Review the full story in the Tampa Bay Times – click here.