Witnessing Native Heritage: July 22

Today we started off waking-up at the Tuscon Ho-Jo and a $27 budgeted breakfast for 10 at Safeway. Then we moved towards the Santa Catalina Mountains, where we hiked in to Lake Rose and set-up a small picnic feast of Subway sandwiches. After we hiked deeper into the mountains, we found a quiet spot for shared reflection...getting to know one another on a deeper level, as we continued to build community.

On the road again...we drove south to the Annual Native American Catholic Tekakwitha Conference at the San Xavier Mission. This annual celebration represented 50 tribes across the US- we were excited to partake! For dinner, we ate complimentary tortas and watched an amazing procession with a ritual dance. Even though I am not Native American, I was moved by the community and love at the pow-wow. There was a shared unity and hospitality that the people poured-out to us (even as outsiders at their sacred celebrations), and I wanted to pay respect to the traditions I was observing. So, inspired by the evening, I joined the closing procession followed the people to touch their sacred icons.

A beautiful evening of unity on the border...

(Student journal)

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