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Catholic Charities President Marx to attend Pope Francis’ speech to Congress

Sen. Amy Klobuchar invited Tim Marx to the speech; other Minnesotans will be at the pope’s events in Washington, New York and Philadelphia this week.

Sen. Amy Klobuchar has invited Tim Marx, president of Catholic Charities, to join her for Pope Francis’ address to Congress on Thursday.

The pope is making his first visit to the U.S., with stops in Washington, New York and Philadelphia. He arrives Tuesday and leaves Sunday to return to Rome.

In announcing that Marx will join her for the joint session of Congress, Klobuchar said: “From advocating for justice, to its work in addressing poverty and homelessness in our communities, Catholic Charities assists our neighbors in need – a spirit that defines us as Minnesotans.”

Marx, a former St. Paul City Attorney and deputy mayor, said: “Pope Francis calls each of us — regardless of faith, background, or circumstance — to hear the cry of the poor: to provide homes for the homeless, to feed the hungry, to welcome the refugee, and to assure that our society and economy provide opportunity for everyone. I hope his message and his visit provide all of us a renewed commitment to these values.”

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Many Minnesotans are making the trip to the East Coast to see the pope. Among them is Mary Jo Copeland, founder of Sharing and Caring Hands in Minneapolis, who’s been invited to meet the pope at a private meeting Thursday at the Vatican Embassy in Washington. Bishop Andrew Cozzens also will be there.

And 15 Minnesota Latino faith leaders from the Asamblea de Derechos Civiles (Assembly for Civil Rights) are leaving today for the East Coast to seek attention during the pope’s visit to the “urgent issues facing Latinos, immigrants and people of color across the nation.”

 Pablo Tapia, co-ounder of Asamblea, said:

It’s time for those in political office to answer a critical call for justice, not only from His Holiness, Pope Francis, but from our entire community as well. Everyday we hear the stories of families torn apart, and the women and children who languish in prison while the rich and powerful profit off of our oppression. We are organizing this trip to speak the truth, and take inspiration from Pope Francis to carry our mission forward.