by Katharine Malaga
The aroma of fresh tamales and apple pie filled St Joan of Arc’s Hospitality Hall for the annual Sister Parish dinner and fund raiser.
“Its so good to see you!” said many of our fellow travelers to Guatemala said.
“It’s good to be seen,” Ross said after three bear hugs.
I piled Ross’s plate with two tamales de elote (corn tamales), rice, black beans, and cole slaw. Every bite brought memories of Guatemalan families and the homes where we had stayed. As he ate, several parishioners came to our table. “We remember the wonderful retreat you led.” That was in March of 2010, a month before his stroke. “We still recite the prayer you wrote.” That was also in March of 2010. “We remember the talks you gave,” they said.
Here, in this hermandad, this relationship of solidarity, between St Joan of Arc in Minneapolis and Our Lady of Guadalupe in Guatemala, Ross is not an invisible person walking with a cane and struggling with speech. They “see” him. This is the value of solidarity with others: we see and are seen.