Day 1: I'm a street person.
January 6, 2013
Today’s adventures began in our Duarte, California home at Santa Teresita. We began the morning with a reflection of expectations of our universities and ourselves. Each of us, from our respected university and different backgrounds and upbringing, expressed different expectations, goals and anxieties for this Marianist University Immersion.
One of my profound events of today’s activities was meeting and interacting with the West Hills Marianist Community. We were given the opportunity to grow in fellowship and family spirit over a meal with each other, the community and their guest. I learned more about individuals and their life on a more personal, one-to-one basis. The quality time spent was true, genuine and in the moment.
Principal, Catholic Charity volunteer, tutor, mentor and all around good people are just few of the roles of the men that make up the six-person community. Sitting down and learning the different major or minor events that got them to this moment, were different stories.
Br. Skip’s life and faith journey brining him to the here and now is still replaying in my head. He spent ten years serving in Hawaii, twenty-one years serving in Africa and now he is serving in “the jungle” city of Los Angeles, California. Twice a week Br. Skip goes down to Skid Row to be with the people there, every Christmas he sets up a card table so those unable can notify their family and loved ones that their still alive. More then eight hundred cards get sent out every Christmas. Yes, it was Br. Skip’s stories that were really getting me, but more then that it was the way he was saying them, the way he was speaking throughout our meal conversation. I could almost say he had ”swag” about him. He said himself, “I’m a street person at heart,” which made the more sense of why he does what he does.
We talked about our lives, sharing our life with each other. He told me, which really stuck, that all these events, triumphs, trials and even this trip is what will make me a better woman, daughter, mother, person, in the world for experiencing such different cinereous and situations that challenge my way of living and believing. He encouraged traveling and doing everything I want to do now, when I’m young and when I do not have “real world responsibilities” for myself, “Just do it.”
So, for you readers, I offer the challenge to find what you’re passionate about or something that you think about doing and pursue them. It could be as simple as starting a conversation with a stranger or buying a meal for someone. If you’re a traveler, go the distance and travel and experience life from a new perspective of the world. Bottom line is, “Just do it.”
Sarah Makena Hamilton
St. Mary’s University
San Antonio, TX