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Girl, 10, asks pope to help keep her dad from being deported

A 10-year-old Los Angeles girl made a personal plea to the pope, hoping to keep her father from being deported.
March 27, 2014 12:00:00 AM PDT
A 10-year-old Los Angeles girl traveled to the Vatican to make a personal plea to the pope, hoping to keep her father from being deported.

Jersey Vargas' dad is being held by immigration officials. While her dad is in the U.S. illegally, Jersey is a U.S. Citizen. She flew to Rome with a group of immigration activists and managed to work her way to the front of the line and snag the pope's attention before he was scheduled to meet with President Barack Obama for the first time.

"First, I told him that please help me because my dad is in the process of deportation and I told him that it's also unfair that other families are also going through the same situation," said Jersey. "That's when he came close to me. He blessed me and he kissed me on my forehead. He told me in my ear that he was going to talk with the president."

After the president's meeting with the pope, Mr. Obama noted that the two of them did discuss immigration reform in the U.S. The meeting between the two men went longer than expected. They talked in the Vatican Library for almost an hour.

Jersey points out that hopefully it had something to do with her papal meeting and the plight of her father.

"President Obama, he has the power to control the United States. And Pope Francis, he is the closest person to God," said Jersey.

The activist group, Full Rights for Immigrants Coalition, is working with Jersey's family. According to the group, the family has come up with $5,000 to post as bond. They say that while a judge is letting Jersey's father post bail on Friday, the deportation case will still have to be reviewed later.

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