Showing posts from 2019

The bread of the Lord's compassion

We get our bread at the peril of our lives. – Lamentations 5:9
In Zaporizhzhia, Ukraine at the Mennonite Family Center, we hear Boris Letkemann share his family’s story of exile and homecoming. There was so much suffering and so much death.
Boris remembers, they took his father and his father never returned. Years later, in a camp in Siberia, the family is reunited and they make their way back to Zaporizhzhia. Today, Boris works at the Center and helps provide food, shelter and support for people like him who need what he needed those many years ago.

As Boris shares his story, the elderly women across the hallway, a few of the 120 women who receive home health care from the Mennonite Family Center, plaintively sing the old hymns of the church. Later, we sing back to them, and then we sing together, How Great Thou Art.
In Russia, between 1914 and 1923, millions of people lost their lives to war, disease and starvation. Mennonites were among those who suffered. And Mennonites were among th…

God multiplies our efforts

The jar of meal will not be emptied and the jug of oil will not fail. – I Kings 17:14
Ana Hinojosa remembers growing up on the Texas-Mexico border near Brownsville in the late 80s. Her family’s house was a mile from the border wall and she remembers the extended family gatherings in her back yard. Ana, an MCC immigration staff person, says border patrol agents would rest in the shade of the trees near the front of her house and, in the same day, it would be possible for a family from Mexico to knock on her front door to ask for food or directions. Her family turned no one away.
Life on the border can look quite different today.
When we enter the Catholic Charities respite center in McAllen, Texas, it is startling to see the contrast from the serenity of the neighborhood outside to the chaos inside. Cesar Matta tells us that, today, the center is hosting 350 people who have just arrived to be processed for asylum. Most of these people are fleeing violence and poverty in Guatemala or Hondu…