"Africa is, indeed, coming into fashion." - Horace Walpole (1774)

7.21.2006

mirror, mirror on the wall

I've been meaning to share this picture for over a week now. It was taken at El Buen Samaritano, an center for immigrants run by the Episcopal diocese of Austin. El Buen is led by the amazing Father Ed Gomez. They provide education, ESL, and computer classes, a food pantry, exercise and nutrition classes, child care and preschool, and health care for families who lack health insurance. Their goal is to provide recent immigrants to our city with the tools and skills they need to assimilate into middle class life. It is one of the only programs of its kind in the country, and it is one of the most incredible programs I know. I first visited El Buen in the summer of 2004 and am continually impressed by how they develop and expand programs to meet the needs of their clients to love each one and to give them a better chance.
This mosaic was created by a high school senior. It depicts the story of the good samaritan, which is what "el buen samaritano" means. She intentionally created the face of both the Samaritan and the injured Jewish man as mirrors, to remind each of us that we should see ourselves in both faces. The question is not, "should we help?" The question is whether we're willing to look past the racial, economic, and situational barriers that divide us to love one another. We can choose simple, easy acts of charity, as Father Ed told our group last week, or we can choose to do what is inconvenient and expensive to reintegrate the wounded into life. We can choose, as he put it, to bandage the guy and leave him in the ditch, or we can choose to bandage him, give him a place to sleep, and help him to heal.

1 Comments:

Anonymous kirstin said...

Thanks for sharing this picture. :)

Saturday, July 22, 2006 10:15:00 AM

 

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