Tenemos dos días mas en nuestro programa and vamos a regresar para terminar el último año de nuestra maestría de trabajo social. As I think about all we have experienced, seen, tasted, felt, heard, touched, and learned these last two weeks I am overwhelmed with a sense of intense gratitude. No pudimos tener esta experiencia en nuestro país, tuvimos que venir a Puebla para entender, para saber. I am incredibly grateful for the amazing people who were willing to tell their stories to us. I am thankful for Gloria for sharing about the intense suffering she and her family experienced in the U.S. backed war in El Salvador, for Estela, who traveled 8 hours on a bus from her home in Guerrero to tell us about her passion for community organizing. We were so blessed to experience an indigenous cleansing ceremony led by Nacho, who opened our eyes to the beauty of indigenous people and the deep history of their pain. What an incredible blessing it has been to be a part of this group. También, yo quiero dar gracias a todos los ancianitos que están en el asilo en Puebla. Tuvimos mucho tiempo sentando con ellos y oyendo de sus historias. Es increíble el impacto de ser y hablar con ellos. Ellos tienen mucho que compartir con nosotros y es un placer entender de ellos.
One valuable lesson I will take away from our time here in Puebla, as I prepare to work as a Social worker is the importance of humility in our work. One dictionary states that humility is “the quality or state of not thinking you are better than other people.” As social workers, we are out on the front lines fighting for justice, sharing in voicing for the voiceless, taking a stand, empowering, and dialoguing. We must practice and develop many skills and I believe one of the most important virtues we can practice is that of humility. Mahatma Gandhi stated, “It is unwise to be too sure of one’s own wisdom. It is healthy to be reminded that the strongest might weaken and the wisest might err.” There are a lot of things that we know and still we must find a place for humility, with our clients, coworkers, financial sponsors, government, and fellow social workers. This will require listening well, not making snap judgments, admitting mistakes, accepting and giving forgiveness, and working hard to bring healing to our selves, clients, friends, churches, communities, countries, neighboring countries and world. We have an important job and I am so blessed to be a part of this group of bleeding heart social workers who care so much about walking alongside those who are marginalized, exploited, abused, and violated in order to bring about peace, freedom, justice, and healing. What an honor and privilege this experience has been, I will forever treasure this time and hold on to the memories dearly. Thank you Stephen von Merz and Liz Hamel (DU), and Gerardo Debbink with Quest Mexico, for choosing to do something, to take action, and to share with others!