“Is it my way that is unfair, or rather, are not your ways unfair?” asks the Lord to the people of Israel through the prophet Ezekiel.
I can tell you with confidence: it’s not the divine law of God that unfairly governs the U.S.-Mexico border. It’s human laws, and those laws are marked by injustice and create a situation of chaos for the poor and vulnerable.
Take for example Milene, a 23-year-old migrant from Honduras, who has been traveling with her husband since October, after her brother-in-law was murdered by the local cartel. She left her home behind in haste and already a few months into her pregnancy. Now she sits waiting in northern Mexico, logging into an app every day that the U.S. government is using for scheduling appointments to seek entry into the U.S. for humanitarian reasons. The appointments fill up in seconds, like tickets to a Taylor Swift concert. For three weeks running, Milene has been unable to schedule an appointment. Now her due date is just a week away. She shakes with fear when talking about the possibility of giving birth in a migrant shelter without access to proper health care. It could be a situation of life or death for her and her child. Can you imagine being in her shoes?
“Is it my way that is unfair, or rather, are not your ways unfair?” asks the Lord.
Where can we find God in the chaos of Milene’s situation? It actually shines quite brightly if you know where to look. She sits front and center during our celebration of Mass at the migrant shelter. She raises her hands in praise of God and bows her head in prayer. Her faith is a source of strength and hope, and she turns to God daily.
Let us turn to God, too. The divine laws of God remind us that we are all united in Christ. Our human laws divide and separate us. Inspired by brave women like Milene, let us work together to build bridges and not walls, and to help the grace of God break through the chaos of our world.
- How are you called to advocate for policies and laws that are just and humane—that address injustices that create “chaos for the poor and vulnerable?”
Fr. Brian Strassburger, S.J., is a Jesuit priest missioned to the Diocese of Brownsville, Texas to assist in a local parish and accompany migrants on both sides of the U.S.-Mexico border. To learn more about the work that he and Fr. Louie Hotop, S.J., are doing, check out their podcast, “The Jesuit Border Podcast,” or reach out to them at firstname.lastname@example.org