Jose Juan Federico Moreno has been living in University Church for over 40 days. He is taking sanctuary from Immigration and Customs Enforcement. (Bian Elkhatib/MEDILL)

Undocumented father takes sanctuary in church

By Bian Elkhatib

J

ose Juan Federico Moreno has not left University Church in Hyde Park since April 15. He is seeking sanctuary from Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) after they asked him to self-deport to Mexico.

Moreno, who is from Bolingbrook, has a wife and five U.S. citizen children. He was targeted for deportation after receiving a DUI in 2009.

“I regret what I did. But I paid my fines, all the tickets I got,” Moreno said in Spanish.

He said living in the church is difficult, but he’s thankful for the support he’s receiving from the church, the community and his family.

Photo at top: Jose Juan Federico Moreno has been living in University Church for over 40 days. He is taking sanctuary from Immigration and Customs Enforcement. (Bian Elkhatib/MEDILL)