Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Tucson Sabbatical Adventure--Casa Mariposa

During the time I stayed in Tucson, I lived at Casa Mariposa, an "intentional" community started by the Vicar of St. Andrew's, Tucson, and her partner Carol.  There are 6 young people living in this community, all very actively involved in peace and justice issues in the community, and with providing hospitality to folks who need a place to stay for a while-- this included a woman seeking political asylum from Ethiopia and a young Mexican man just released from prison.

I was most impressed by their "Greyhound Ministry,"  Every night two of them go to the Greyhound bus station to meet a bus arriving from the immigration detention center in Eloy.  The INS simply drops off those who have been released from detention at the bus station with their belongings in a plastic bag.  Many of them have no place to go, and no money.   The Casa Mariposa folks are there to greet them with food, water, access to a phone, and if they need it, a place to stay for the night.  On Tuesday night (my last night there), they hosted two young men.  One of them was documented but was picked up anyway and held for a week!

It made me think.  Wouldn't it be great if all of our larger parishes had such a hospitality house for those in need in their community, a refugee for folks who needed temporary housing?  Everyone in the parish could help with the cooking and logistics--that now would be a ministry of hospitality!  Lack that, we can all do our best to support efforts like Casa Mariposa to provide shelter and a welcome in the name of Christ.

[Note:  This will be the last blog entry until General Convention begins next month--then look for daily updates from Indianapolis]


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