comScore Activists Planned Pope's Touching Encounter With Immigrant

Pope’s Touching Encounter With Immigrant Girl Planned a Year Ago by Activists

Sophie CruzA number of national outlets covered the touching story of Sophie Cruz, a five-year-old daughter of illegal immigrants who jumped a barrier Wednesday to deliver to Pope Francis a hand-written note begging him to urge Congress to act on their behalf.

What they didn’t report, however, is that Cruz was chosen and prepped for a year by a pro-immigration advocacy group.

According to the Associated Press, “the moment unfolded as perfectly as it was scripted by members of a coalition of Los Angeles-based immigration rights groups. They had been preparing for nearly a year for the young girl from suburban Los Angeles to make a dash for the popemobile to deliver a message about the plight of immigrant parents living in the country illegally.”

“We planned to do this from the moment we learned he was coming to the States,” Juan Jose Gutierrez of the Full Rights for Immigrants Coalition told them. He said that if the Pope had not spoken to the girl, they would have flown her to New York and Philadelphia to try again.

The AP also reports that the group “orchestrated an equally successful effort in Rome last year with 10-year-old Jersey Vargas, who pleaded with Francis to urge President Barack Obama to free her immigrant father from a Louisiana detention center.”

[Image via screengrab/CBS News]
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