S. Sandy Straub’s Diary -Day 2 On the Border Saturday July 12,2014Sr Sandy Straub is writing to us from the border where she is volunteering at Annunciation House (see their excellent video on our home page to learn what happens there)
|Srs. Sandy and Ida|
Off to the center we went, Pat and Fred and me. Ida had many Housemothers chores to do! And I mean many. We are currently five here with 2 more coming tomorrow and S. Marsha Allen and companion on Tuesday. The center was very busy with single mothers and children. They mainly came from El Salvador and Honduras. The center is very well organized with many bilingual church related volunteers. Their spirit is contagious and welcoming.I happened to say to someone ..I was free to go. Quickly, the response was, you are skilled, blessed and sent! I am remembering this as I walk the halls and meet the families. I have the thought that I am giving the ministry of presence to whomever I meet. Those thoughts ..sent by CSJ and friends, joyful companions, good place to come home to, bubbled up in my gratitude prayer this morning.
Let me share some stories from today:
I talked with a 20year old mom who came with her one month old baby girl, Victoria. She is desperate to make something for her baby. She said when she got to the Mexican border 30 people were clumped together to cross the river. The water was waste high and filthy. She carried her baby, paid the Mexican and came over to be met by border patrol. She was processed sent to El Paso. None are told where they are going...I think that is for protection. She is off to Houston by bus 12 hour ride to be with her sister.
Another mother with her pre teen girl told a similar story. However when she arrived on our border they had her throw everything away. She got to keep only her bible. Unfortunately her daughter had a Guadalupe medal and chain in a bag and that was lost when they had to leave their belongings . She teared up when she talked about leaving her very sick mother with her17 year old daughter. She will go to New York by bus with very little.
A happy story... Two young women brought craft things for the guests to make. They spread it all out on the table and the mothers began to make cards and bracelets, using glitz and beads. One woman said she had nothing and she wanted to make a pretty bracelet to look pretty for her husband who was meeting her at the plane. And she looked radiantly happy and pretty when she left.