Posted in Excerpts at 08:06 am by admin
Every Sunday at 9:10 A.M. you will find my husband and I at the adult forum given at St. Patrick’s Episcopal church in our town, Incline Village. This past week our rector gave the group the assignment to watch the movie “In America.” We rented this movie and Sunday, during our forum, we saw parts of it and discussed what implications it had for our lives. Much of our discussion had to do with faith.. The movie is about an Irish couple with two young daughters who came to America, via Canada, in an old car, with $100.00 in cash, and with no expectation about the future. They had just lost a son to brain cancer, and especially the father lingered in a state of shock, unable to experience his deep emotions. The oldest daughter, about 12, had a movie camera and she documented every part of their lives.
They moved into a tenement in New York City, where most of the tenants were drug addicts and social outcasts. On the first floor lived a tall, very scary, African man, named Mateo, who was known for his screaming any time, day or night. There are many meaningful parts to this story, but for me, the most significant time was when the two young girls befriended Mateo. They insisted on “trick or treating” on Halloween, and were excited to find Mateo home. He reluctantly let them in, and after searching for some kind of a treat for the girls, he found a small jar filled with coins. He gave it to them, and this was the beginning of a wonderful friendship. What I saw was a clear depiction of unconditional love between these little girls and Mateo, which became the catalyst for all kinds of transformations for everyone. It turned out that Mateo was dying of aids, and the Irish mother was pregnant with a baby which the doctors said was in danger of not surviving. By the family’s unconditional love for Mateo, as well as Mateo’s ability to return their love, wonderful things happened. For me this was a clear picture of what it means to be a Christian and how unconditional love brings about positive changes for all of us. Read the rest of this entry »