Teachers, colleagues, companions on the journey. That’s what the people of Nicaragua have been for me since 1990 when I first went to live and work in Managua with my Franciscan Community. Nicaragua is a small country with a big heart. The people know struggle and they know hope and perseverance in the struggle for their human rights, their basic needs, the protections of their lands and culture and their commitment to democracy.
This Saturday the walk ‘n roll walk will be from Faithful Fools in the Tenderloin out to the Pacific Ocean. The nearly 6 mile hike will be to honor all the people whom we support and love in this small and mighty country. When I left Nicaragua and came to the Bay Area in 1998, I knew that we all remained connected by the Pacific Ocean that flowed between us. I, and many other Faithful Fools traveled back and forth between the U.S. and Managua and Managua and the U.S. building a beautiful community grounded in mutual care and love.
I was 29 when I went to Nicaragua, so for more than half my life the people and the culture have nurtured and formed me. I am grateful! So, the walk this Saturday is one of gratitude. It is also one of remembrance of the many people who have passed away, most especially Heidi Meza, founder of San Francisco de Asís school, who died this past month. We also walk as a renewal of our commitment to keep on moving forward together, in struggle and in celebration.