Are Refugees Dangerous? A repost from the Public Discourse



Immigration remains a decisive issue for our nation and I remain far too uneducated to have much to say about it.  The Witherspoon Institute’s weekly online publication, Public Discourse has been a great resource for me on issues of morality, culture and politics. This article, Are Refugees Dangerous? is no exception. It does not deny the significant risks and challenges in managing the refugee crisis, but offers a thoughtful look at some of the downsides of the current immigration ban and paints a picture of what a healthier approach might look like. It also asks us to rise to the challenge, that we would be a country who seeks to care for those in need of help.

I’d love to hear your thoughts after reading. Do you have a personal story to share about immigration? What questions would you like to have answered as I plan for more posts in this series?



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Walking Epiphany Brought to you by Tamara Murphy

Epiphany, Hope on the Border Liturgy of Life, Horse and cart clinic Reynosa Mexico


One of the best and most unexpected pleasures of blogging is all of the new friendships.  I am so grateful that despite all its failures, this crazy internet world can truly be used to foster meaningful relationships.  One of those that I am most grateful for is with Tamara Murphy who blogs at This Sacramental Life.  She has begun a blog series called Walking Epiphany and has been kind enough to invite me to participate.  I realized as I was choosing photos for this post that Tamara was helping me to see my own life with fresh eyes and for that I am abundantly thankful.

Check it out, this is the first in her series.


On Being Tired of Being Alone

Being Tired of being alone. Liturgy of Life.


Walking back to my car, the morning heat in October is suffocating.  It’s the first time I’ve been alone in a while and so rather than blinking back the tears I let them come. They are warm and tingly as they run down my face, like standing in the rain.


And there isn’t any big deal.  So what if  we have lived here two months and I still don’t know my way around town and so drove around lost for the last 20 minutes? Who cares if I finally made it to the farmer’s market just as it was closing and didn’t actually get to bring home my grass-fed beef bones and organic papayas?


I’ll survive it.


It’s just that I’m  tired of feeling out of place and I’m weary of being alone. I long to fit in, to be settled, to call anything around me familiar.  Every street sign, every face, every humid breeze, they all seem to say, “you don’t belong here, this isn’t your place.” And so I sit in the car and weep, it has been a long time coming and it feels good.


.    .    .


My husband and I volunteer with a shelter that houses new immigrants.  Today we took some of the Ethiopian refugees to church and invited them back to our house for lunch.  Samira came with her 4 month old baby and 5 year old son.  We chatted while our kids played and she told me about traveling for 6 months, about sleeping on the floor in detainment while 9 months pregnant, about her husband in prison, and how she was waiting to hear word from her family about him any day.


And I knew if suffering could be quantified, certainly hers was worse than mine.  She may never return to the country where she was born. The sights and smells, the language, the people, as much as she adjusts, will never feel quite like home. And here she is alone caring for her sons, one who has not yet met his own father.


I wish I could say that I was selfless enough to let her story lift me out of my own self-pity.  Instead I clung to my dejection, afraid I wouldn’t recognize myself if I let it go.  We sat together, two moms from different worlds, eating apples and laughing at our kids, our pain boxed up neatly inside.  Yet knowing that we were not quite as alone as we had been an hour before.


Both thinking that though it wasn’t much, for today it was enough.



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On Moving South and Loading up the Donkey

On Moving South and loading up the donkey, Liturgy of Life

“You couldn’t pay me to move down there,” chuckles the man helping me unload my boxes at the Good Will.

“That’s like the border of Mexico. No sir. You’ll probably get killed.”


I blink wide eyed as I hand him the last of my things.

I had mentioned we were preparing for a move, and he’d asked where we were going.

I wondered if my daughter was picking up on what all he was saying.


“Good luck,” he waved as we drove off.


I felt flustered, but knew that despite spending the last five minutes critiquing my life, he really hadn’t meant any harm by it. The reality was that most people probably had the same thoughts but had enough self control to not say anything out loud.

And I get it. I mean the border of Mexico is hot, it is far away from everything except Mexico and it doesn’t help that the border has been synonymous violence in the minds of Americans for the last 10 years.

And I feel it. Not just in the disapproving comments but in my own heart.

.    .    .

[Read the rest…]