-The Rev. Deacon Nancy Key
Two weeks ago I found myself at the border with an interfaith community of love – not the soft sort of love of romantic novels, but the hard, demanding, noisy sort of love that calls us to action. This was the Friday night revival-style gathering at Our Lady of Mt. Carmel in San Ysidro, California, organized by PICO California and its affiliates, including my local Faith in Fresno. We started by singing outside, looking across the fields into Tijuana. Then we processed inside the church, clergy and lay folks of all faiths and denominations. Since it was Shabbat, the evening started with a rabbi lighting the candles and inviting all of us to join her in reciting the traditional Shabbat blessing. Continuing, our hearts were stirred by pastors, preachers, more rabbis, and an Iman. And we sang:
Solid as a rock, rooted as a tree,
I am here, standing tall,
in my rightful place!
What made this my rightful place on this Friday night? Love, pure and simple. Love for those who had no voice, whose journey to America had landed them in one of so many detention centers. A raft of scripture runs through my head – “You shall not wrong a stranger or oppress him, for you were strangers in the land of Egypt.” Or Mary in her song of praise, “My soul magnifies the Lord …. He has brought down the powerful from their thrones and lifted up the lowly.” Or Jesus unrolling the scroll and proclaiming, “The Spirit of the Lord is upon me …. He has sent me to proclaim release to the captives… to let the oppressed go free.” And here we were, solid as rocks, ourselves proclaiming the rightfulness of setting the captives free in this year of the Lord. Read more…