On August 15, 2018, Theresa “Terrie” Iacino, the Executive Director of Catholic Charities of the Diocese of Monterey, established the Saint Toribio Romo Fund.

The purpose of The Saint Toribio Romo Fund is to use monetary donations to support our immigration services dept. and provide financial assistance to our U-Visa clients. A U-Visa is a non-immigrant visa for victims of crimes (and their immediate family members) who have suffered substantial mental or physical abuse and are willing to assist law enforcement and government officials in the investigation or prosecution of the criminal activity.

Saint Toribio Romo’s dedication to the Catholic faith represents the courage that it takes for victims of violent crime to seek citizenship in America. Faced with seemingly insurmountable opposition, U-Visa applicants prevail with bravery, just as Saint Toribio Romo.

Saint Toribio Romo

Saint Toribio Romo

Toribio Romo González (April 16, 1900 – February 25, 1928) was born in Santa Ana de Guadalupe, Jalisco, Mexico to Patricio Romo Perez and Juana González Romo. He entered the Auxiliary Seminary in San Juan de los Lagos in 1912, and was ordained as a priest in 1922. Pope John II canonized Toribio Romo on May 21, 2000 and who is regarded as the de facto patron saint of immigrants after Mother Frances Cabrini. He is wrote the play “Vamos al Norte” (Let’s Go North) a comedy about the perils of crossing the border to find work in the United States. He died on February 25, 1928 during La Cristiada (Cristero Rebellion), the brutal internal conflict that lasted between 1926 and 1929 and pitted rural Catholic lay people and clergymen against the forces of the anti-Catholic, anti-clerical central government in Mexico City headed by President Plutarco Calles. Saint Romo bravely faced danger, just as the applicants for U-Visa’s, thus naming him “The Migrant’s Saint”.

How To Support

To support the Saint Toribio Romo Fund in honor of Terrie Iacino, please make checks out to:

Catholic Charities Diocese of Monterey
Memo: Saint Toribio Romo Fund for Immigration

922 Hilby Avenue, Suite C
ATTN: Development Department
Seaside, CA 93955

A Message from Terrie Iacino

I, Terrie Iacino, established the Saint Toribio Romo Fund because I believe that the spirit of St. Toribio Romo will support U-Visa clients and their families through the whole application and processing time. This fund is in memory of Saint Toribio Romo who was also a champion for immigrants.

I know that it takes tremendous courage for an undocumented victim of a crime to come forward and request a U-Visa. It can take 3-10 years for a U-Visa to be approved. Catholic Charities is committed to assisting U-Visa clients and their families until the request is granted.

Throughout my years as Executive Director for Catholic Charities of the Diocese of Monterey, I have seen firsthand how Catholic Charities immigration staff  have provided service that offers a spark of hope for over 100 U-Visa clients a year and guaranteeing them the protection from deportation while they await for the determination of their formal petition.