Day 3 Monday January 9, 2012

Today was our first day of doing service. We woke up and went to Chinatown in downtown LA, it was a different experience than what I am used to; we were immersed in a different culture. This has definitely been a cultural immersion; we attended a Spanish Mass yesterday and ate Mexican food, today we ate Vietnamese food and later spoke with a Vietnamese youth leader from the Parish. He gave us his immigration story, which impacted me a lot. I too am an immigrant. Listening to his story enlightened me with his unique perspective on life. Phong, the Vietnamese immigrant came to the US when he was only fourteen. He arrived alone to overcome the obstacles. His enthusiasm to bring life to the parish and support the Vietnamese youth is something to emulate. He has put a lot of effort to help the youth from falling into gangs, violence, and drugs. It is people such as him that motivate me to be better and do better in the world.

Claudia Carrete
St. Mary's Univeristy
San Antonio, Texas

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