World Refugee Day

Let mutual love continue. Do not neglect to show hospitality to strangers, for by doing that some have entertained angels without knowing it. Remember those who are in prison, as though you were in prison with them; those who are being tortured, as though you yourselves were being tortured.
— Hebrews 13:1-3

Dear Trinity Church Community,

I’m grateful for the opportunity you gave me to participate in my recent Spanish immersion program in Antigua, Guatemala. It was a challenging experience , but I was able to increase my knowledge of Spanish. I met the Bishop of Guatemala and attended services at St. Alban’s Episcopal Church in Antigua.  The people of Guatemala are lovely, kind, and beyond hospitable.  I met so many wonderful people, some of whom are simply struggling to survive.  

In addition to meeting wonderful people, I was reminded how challenging it is to learn a new language.  Despite six hours of Spanish classes, five days a week, for three weeks — I’m still struggling to learn the language.  I also contracted a stomach parasite while in Guatemala. After several visits to the doctor, I wasn’t getting better.  Once I became ill in one of my classes, the doctor was called and it was determined I needed to fly home early.  It was an incredibly scary moment to be that sick and unsure how to become well.  Soon after landing here in the country, I was able to seek medical attention and quickly began improving.  

While in Guatemala, I became viscerally aware of how desperate one can feel when ill in a foreign county.  I can only imagine the desperation that drives many people to seek asylum or refuge at our borders.  As our country continues to debate immigration policy, I pray we begin to honor this desperation and create immigration laws and systems that are fair, equitable, and just.  As we celebrate World Refugee Day, I thought it wise to include a recent video from Episcopal Migration Ministries and join in our Presiding Bishop’s request to stand with migrants.



Br. Chris McNabb, OSF