Posted by: sbilingual | November 22, 2010

Immigration Center grand opening set for Tuesday, Nov. 23, in Alexandria

The grand opening of Alexandria’s new Immigration Center, at the Newman Methodist Church Outreach Center, 4210 S. MacArthur Drive in Alexandria, will be held from 5:30 – 7 p.m. on Tuesday, Nov. 23.

There will be a reception at the center immediately after opening ceremonies.

The Catholic Diocese of Alexandria, the Episcopal Diocese of Western Louisiana, the Alexandria District of the United Methodist Church and the Louisiana Bar Foundation worked together to open the center.

Participating in the ceremony, representing the entities who collaborated in the community-wide project, will be the Most Rev. Ronald Herzog, bishop of the Catholic Diocese of Alexandria; the Rt. Rev. D. Bruce MacPherson, D.D., bishop of the Episcopal Diocese of Western Louisiana; Rev. Ellen Alston, superintendent of the Alexandria District of the United Methodist Church; and Lady Carlson and Peter Fears, representing the Northern and Central Louisiana Interfaith Cluster. In addition, representatives of the Chamber of Commerce are expected to attend.

The center is the culmination of a four-year effort by the churches to gain U.S. Department of Justice approval, find a home for the center and to acquire partial accreditation for José Colls, the center executive director.

Colls, a retired Air Force Captain and originally from Puerto Rico, underwent extensive immigration training offered at various locations such as New Mexico, Connecticut, South Carolina, and Florida.

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