I once asked my parents why they had decided to undertake the frightening and dangerous journey of leaving Mexico and illegally entering the United States. Their answer: por ti, por nuestros hijos.
“For you, for our children.”
In that answer, they revealed to me that their sacrifices were eased by their immense hope. Even more astounding, they hoped in something physically invisible. They were willing to endure the pain, injustice and rejection that immigrants suffer in the Unites States for the sake of what are now their four Mexican-American children. They had faith that God would guide them in this journey and that we, as their children, would fully flourish in this country.
Hoping in the physically invisible: isn’t that what we are called to do as Christians, especially during this time of Lent? We are entering a time of sacrifice while waiting in prayer for the resurrection of Christ. We wait for something that is, in almost every way, impossible. And yet we hope within this impossibility, within a miracle that we may never physically see. We hope in the resurrection because we have felt Christ alive in our hearts. We trust in his words and in his loving message. For us, this is enough to foster hope and strength as we enter into these 40 days of solemnity. It is like the hope and strength that my immigrant parents received as they imagined the faces of their unborn children.
- What sacrifices have you made and would you be willing to make for your family?
- What sacrifices have you made and would you be willing to make for your faith?
Andrés Arteaga is an artist, dancer and writer (as well as a former Jesuit). He promotes the arts in marginalized communities as tool to overcome social oppression. He plans to pursue an MFA in Arts and Politics in the near future.