SHST hosted a Feb. 2 presentation by Josephe Marie Flynn on her book, Rescuing Regina, in which she chronicles the story of Regina Bakala and her family.
Bakala was a young mother in the U.S. threatened with the terrifying prospect of deportation to the Congo, whose government had imprisoned her and whose soldiers had raped and tortured her.
In the book Flynn tells Regina’s powerful story — and how a pit-bull lawyer, a group of volunteers, and a feisty nun set aside political differences to galvanize a movement to save her. In the process Flynn uncovers US immigration policies relating to people escaping war crimes, and exposes an America most never see: a vast underbelly of rigid processing determinations, a harsh detention and deportation system, and a frighteningly arbitrary asylum process.
At the Thursday’s event and book signing, attended by about 50 seminarians and members of the community, Regina and Josephe described their battle for justice, and the growth of a strong friendship. Regina’s husband, David, is an SHST employee.