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South Africa: A Raindrop of Hope in Endless Burning

With recent events of racial discrimination, violence, and economic injustice in the U.S., we have come to see the parallels between the South African and American struggles. As Tshegofatso and other friends in Soweto have taught us, rather than seeking direct answers to solve these issues through positions of power, we have come to hope that the response would be to engage in dialogue and continue to ask the same questions back home that Soweto has prompted us to explore. Whom have I been ignoring? What is their story? What are their sources of pain?
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Being A Mother For And With Others: Thabisile’s Journey Of Motherhood in South Africa

My time spent with Thabisile has made me reflect on my experience as a whole in Soweto. In the end, I have found it difficult to be with the people of Soweto and ask them questions on life when I do not quite fully understand myself yet. While many of my experiences have been depressing and overwhelming, this journey has motivated me to continue to dive deeper into a sense of self. It has been such an honor to be surrounded by the joy of people like, Thabisile and Amaza; yet their daily struggles weigh heavy on my heart. I have found it difficult articulating my time in Soweto, but in the midst of this frustration, I have had an incredible experience, and I hope to challenge all those following this journey to experience it themselves–to go out to the margins of our society–whether it is visiting Soweto or simply saying hi to the homeless person at the local shopping center and ask: Am I becoming friends with those on the margins? What is their story? What is their source of pain?
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"Im sorry. Goodbye." Defining Family for Lesedi

The next week, we saw Lesedi walking to St. Martin to attend the weekly morning Mass. She did not look happy. Tears were running down her face, she walked with her hood up, and she couldn’t gather any words to greet us. Upon asking how she was doing, she cried even louder, as she covered her face with her hands. Eventually, the tears stopped and she wrapped her arms around us in a supportive hug. We asked her what was causing her pain, and she told us this . . .