Thursday, June 10, 2010

refueled smiles

Wow. What a week. I am on a train on my way home from Chicago--arrival time estimated at 11:30 EST. P and I headed there on Tuesday to mingle with our colleagues and talk about our work and learn and live a little. It was good.

Our Chicago office had a fundraiser last night that went really well and was inspirational because it was all about honoring young people working for social justice within AFSC--young high schoolers, young college kids, and young in-betweeners--between college or previous work and the rest of their lives.

Anyhow, our regional director is incredibly inspirational and he is so focused on the organizing work that we all do on the ground and the educational pieces of our work built into the fabric of our organizing; this focus really plays well off of our local work with people in prison in MI.

We work with so many young interns and volunteers. We rely on these full-of-energy, yet-to-be-jaded people to help us get through the thousands of letters and other correspondences that we receive each year from people in prison and their loved ones. I am so proud of these kids. Yes, I call them "kids" cause in some ways they are like our real kids. We've developed strong relationships with them and we learn so much about living from them, and they also learn so much about advocacy, and activism, and organizing.

For all of the stress that my work holds within the very nature of its reality; for all of the heartache that crosses our paths; for all of the abuse and harm that we are witness to on a daily basis; knowing that these young people are getting turned on to justice issues and knowing that they will carry what pieces of hope might still be cracking in dust balls from the sky into fertile somethings that will grow a different future--a future dedicated to compassion for all living things and for generations to come, well, all that knowing makes me smile and refuels me for the days ahead.

And, we happened to be in downtown chicago when the blackhawks won last night. kind of neat and surreal.

And, P, got to see the big city for the first time. Also, really neat.

So, to hope, I raise my invisible glass and to the next many weeks of work, I turn to the vapors of energy rising from the minds of those young ones in my life who will and are making a difference in the lives of countless others.

1 comment:

ang said...