Preparations: Helen

As I begin to contemplate how I may broaden my horizons and open my mind in order to absorb each new experience, I ruminate on which predispositions I must abandon. On this pilgrimage, I hope to be able to rid myself of all prejudices and biases surrounding the immigration crisis of Central America. In the Northeast United States, almost all of the news we receive seems distant, and very rarely are we confronted with any firsthand account of the events regarding this crisis. I hope to be able to listen to each side of the story, with a fresh and untainted perspective on each end of the spectrum. With this mentality, I will have the ability to fully immerse in all experiences and stories I will hear on this pilgrimage. Throughout the entire duration of this voyage, I pray to have the ability to absorb, experience, and listen without bias or judgement to either side of the conflict. I hope to develop compassion for both sides and to comprehend either perspective without putting the situation in black and white, but seeing all of the colors and details of both sides of the discussion. I feel as though it is my responsibility to absorb these experiences fully, and bring the knowledge, stories, and experiences to those who don't truly know the full story of this crisis. Please pray for open mindedness, and the immersion of my full body and mind into the unique experiences I will have on this pilgrimage.

Helen, St. John’s, Hingham

Preparations: Emily

I am very excited to be traveling to Nogales in August. I have spent months learning about immigration, getting to know my Las Fronteras travel-mates, and preparing for what we might experience at the border. There is no bigger issue facing our nation than the immigration crisis and the entry of undocumented migrants at the Mexican border. It is on the news every day and our country seems to be divided on how to handle the problem. I can’t wait to be going on a trip— my first excursion as a young adult— but I am not sure what to expect to see and learn as I experience this issue first hand. On this pilgrimage to the Borderlands, I will need to let go of inhibitions that may restrict me from immersing myself in new cultures and experiences that we will encounter. I hope to leave behind any hesitations and be open to trying new things. On this trip, I want to push my boundaries, whether it be trying new foods or speaking Spanish with fluent speakers. I hope that I will always keep myself open to new ideas and won’t allow ideas of what I thought the trip would be stop me from new experiences. I wish to keep an open mind when listening to the many different perspectives we will meet on the immigration crisis. I also hope to push myself to not allow being introverted stop me from speaking with new people and participating in new activities. I will have to be focused on letting go of inhibitions that may hold me back throughout the pilgrimage. I may feel uncomfortable or unwilling to push myself because it is easy to stay within a comfort zone, but the trip and my experiences in Nogales will be incomplete without doing so.

  • Emily, St. Elizabeth, Sudbury

Young People Prepare for Mission Pilgrimage

August 9, 2019, young people from the Diocese and their adult companions head off for a week of mission and pilgrimage to Las Fronteras, learning about life in the Arizona/Mexico borderlands and tribal lands , organized in partnership with the Episcopal Diocese of Arizona. They will explore issues of borders, boundaries, walls, bridges, paths, strangers, family, protection, and hospitality.

As our young leaders prepare for the trip, amid the packing, they have been asked to reflect on something they will need to leave behind in order to be more present to what God has in store for her or him on the trip. Over the coming weeks, look for their reflections here.