REFLECTIONS ON THE MIGRANT MINISTRY - San Diego, CA
The staff and volunteers are getting used to the new shelter location. It is a bit of a maze of hallways, staircases, rooms on different levels but it does have a very handy elevator.
Rosa has a central location for her prayer gatherings with the parents and any young children who want to stay close to them. They sing, have deep moments of silence remembering that God, our loving creator, Jesus, and Spirit are in our midst… "be still, listen and talk with them in your hearts," Rosa invites. Some people are simply moved to tears. They share with the group if they wish. A 7-year-old gave thanks to God for helping his family arrive at this shelter safely after being detained by immigration at our border entry. As the prayer time concludes, several people of faith ask Rosa for her blessing as they prepare to leave the shelter and continue their journey of asylum while staying with family or a sponsor.
While Rosa is engaged with the adults, Nat and I are with the children and some of their parents. One mom made a picture of 3 string-art people and wrote in Spanish, 'God's blessing on this shelter home of friendship'. She had me hang it in the front hallway where it would be seen by all who would enter the shelter.
Recently, Nat and I were doing paper bag puppets and had paper and crayons for coloring. A 9-year-old boy sat quietly smiling and drew a face surrounded by hearts and designs, with eyes that were hearts and a little heart in the mouth (top center). I couldn't help but realize that seeing through eyes of love changes everything. PRESENCE in the Present Moment is all we have together with each man, woman, and child at the shelter… and it is truly holy ground. Here is a sample of the art hanging in the room we use - it is very expressive of God in the midst of all they are experiencing.
Usually migrants are only at the shelter for 1 or 2 nights. Please pray for a woman and her two teenage children who have been there a month, as they need a sponsor. I have given her name to several people and one is considering helping them. Thank you for your prayers.
- Srs. Rosa Mejia, Natalia Mejia, and Rosie Nicholson, RJM