The journey

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photo Tom Kiefer

Today’s Gospel reminded me of the now well documented photographs of objects confiscated from those who have been apprehended at the border, El sueño americano by Tom Kiefer. For those with any doubt, this has been verified. The rosaries received a lot of attention, but all of the items truly struck me, including the copies of El Nuevo Testamento that was so important to have. There were also the other items, the everyday things like combs, toothpaste, and so forth, as well as items from children.

As if it were not enough that we took away rosaries and New Testaments, now we take their children too. I can’t help but wonder what God thinks of all of this. Ultimately what we have really stolen from people is what little hope and dignity they had left after fleeing lives of extraordinary poverty, extreme and violence, lives with no future. If we stole their dignity and their hope, then I think we are really in trouble.

Right now I am thinking of the martyred apostles sent forth by Christ, unwelcome, considered unwanted and dangerous. To this day, many are killed bringing the light of Christ to others in dangerous places. We all know we cannot take anything on that final journey home to God whether we are an apostle or a beggar, a prophet or a king. In the Kingdom we arrive with only ourselves. Our hope for the Kingdom is for our dignity and integrity to be fully restored in the presence of God. Don’t you think that kind of reconciliation and restoration, at least to some extent, is what God asks of us here? This is our journey in Christ, to go out into the world as beacons of hope and light in his name, disciples always bearing the light of that same Jesus Christ who welcomed, healed, and saved all.

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#VisualTheology

Do you use Instagram? I do! How I love it and use it often! Words are often less adequate, which I say as a writer. It is as a photographer that I encounter images which will often pop for me;  they simply express so much more. I am definitely someone who primarily thinks in images.

If you are an Instagram user, you are aware of the use of #hashtags on that site. There are many! More than a few of the ones used by me have been made up by me – I think! For example, #sfmw and #sfmg mean scenes from my walk, and scenes from my garden.  Anyway, I’ve taken to using another tag lately – #VisualTheology. Let me tell you -I am not the only one using that to describe my photos! As I see God and theology all around me in images, this hashtag is powerful for me.

This post introduces some of my #VisualTheology photos that I will periodically bring to the blog. Let me know what you think, and please follow me on Instagram if you wish.

Last full day in #tucson. #grateful #morning #sky #sunrise #visualtheology #sfmw

Last full day in #tucson. #grateful #morning #sky #sunrise #visualtheology #sfmw

Above you see my my first image for #VisualTheology, on this blog, a photo that was taken last week when I was in Tuscon. As I am having trouble embedding the actual Instagram image, I will insert it from my camera roll and add my own tags. Expect to see more like this!