Texas AG Accuses Catholic Nonprofit of Helping Migrants Illegally Cross Border


CV NEWS FEED // Republican Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton this week took legal action against an El Paso-based Catholic-affiliated nonprofit, accusing the organization of helping migrants illegally cross the border and evade law enforcement.

Per a Wednesday press release from his office, Paxton “filed an application for a Temporary Injunction against Annunciation House to halt its systemic criminal conduct in Texas.”

Paxton’s office said it “has reviewed and obtained sworn testimony indicating that Annunciation House’s operations are designed to facilitate illegal border crossings and to conceal illegally present aliens from law enforcement.”

The press release noted that the nonprofit’s “own sworn testimony has shown that [it] operates as a criminal enterprise.”

The release continued:

[Annunciation House] knowingly shelters illegal aliens who evaded border patrol when crossing. It even goes into Mexico to retrieve aliens who border patrol denied. Then, by its own admission, it conceals those people in its shelters from law enforcement. It will let any alien in, yet it paradoxically refuses to comply with any law enforcement demands. Its own website even boasts that it houses people who crossed the border with “help from a coyote.”

Also on Wednesday, The New York Post reported that “Paxton sued Annunciation House on Feb. 20, seeking to end its operations in Texas.”

“At the time, [Paxton] said he requested documents from the organization and it failed to comply,” the Post indicated:

When Paxton requested the documents from Annunciation House, the migrant aid organization asked for 30 days to respond, according to court documents.

However, Paxton said, the organization would be deemed “non-compliant” if it didn’t respond by the next day.


The Catholic News Agency (CNA) reported Thursday that Annunciation House in February “had called Paxton’s efforts ‘illegal, immoral, and anti-faith,’ arguing that the attorney general’s office ‘considers it a crime for a Catholic organization to provide shelter to refugees.’”

The nonprofit then claimed: “If the work that Annunciation House conducts is illegal — so too is the work of our local hospitals, schools, and food banks.”

On its website, Annunciation House describes itself as “a volunteer organization that offers hospitality to migrants, immigrants, and refugees in El Paso, Texas.”

“Rooted in Catholic social teaching, the volunteers of Annunciation House live simply and in community, in the same houses as the guests we serve, who are mostly from Mexico and Central America,” the nonprofit’s website continues. “We also participate in advocacy and education around immigration issues. We seek to be a voice for justice and compassion, especially on behalf of the most marginalized of our society.”

CNA pointed out that the “group was launched in the late 1970s as a Catholic ministry that quickly became ‘a house of hospitality for the homeless poor,’ primarily illegal immigrants.”

Per CNA, Annunciation House is located just “a few thousand feet from the U.S.-Mexico border.”