At the Novena of Grace I heard my marching orders: Go “walk hand in hand with people who are on the margins of society.”
The trip to the Arizona border was intense, life changing, and eye opening. The “Border” that we saw was very different than the pictures I have seen on the nightly news. Many of the shelters have been expanded and are able to serve larger numbers of migrants. We found a force of nature in the “COLLABORATORS” on both sides of the border helping each other to provide dignity and kindness and needed services to all migrants. At Casa Alitas in Tucson, we saw migrants dropped off from ICE and Border Patrol – fear, tears, and embarrassment in their faces, and welcomed as decent human beings. Women and children at Casa de la Misericordia are able to live as family, go to school, learn gardening in safety while waiting for asylum hearings. Men were dropped off by Border Patrol at Agua Prietà with nothing but a plastic bag of clothes, left to fend for themselves. They were given a warm meal, clothing and a place to rest. At a co-op in Agua Prietà, we saw women learning to sew and men working carpentry as options to migrating. I give thanks and praise for the opportunity to walk with and see the face of God in each of them.