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Neomi DeAnda :
7 article(s)

Neomi DeAnda writes from Chicago.
August 17th, 2003
A Mexican-American Woman, an African-American Woman, and an Afternoon Walk

Every human being has dignity and should be treated with respect.
It’s easy, isn’t it?Easy it should be to understand this concept. Not only does the Catholic Church teach it (Human Dignity). We are taught on the playground and in school from a young age to be respectful of one another.
It has been a concept that I have tried to model in my life. I thought of it as a way to be accepting, loving, and always seeing Christ in others. And this teaching had not challenged me in many ways because I have always thought of myself as an easy-going, very-accepting sort of person; that was until last week…
Interpersonal traffic accidentLast week, I stepped out of my new home near the lake in Chicago. I was prepared with…

March 18th, 2003

The Jesus Experience gives a broad overview of the history of Christianity in different parts of the world. While these documentary-style episodes are not quite on the same scale of entertainment as Chicago or Catch Me if You Can, The Jesus Experience squeezes in quite a bit of information.
Latin America The Latin American episode begins with a cultural immersion into the indigenous way of experiencing Christianity. It shows the development of the faith from the time of the Spanish conquistadors and missionaries. Experts, mostly United States Latino theologians and historians, give their additions to the accounts of the past. The audience is presented with major points such as the appearance of Our Lady of…

February 5th, 2003

I first met him at a four-week long summer program; I knew he was the one…or so I thought. Then he didn’t return the phone call. Then the letter came, and I knew he was the one. Then I didn’t return the phone call. Then a year passed …and another.
One day the phone rang with his voice at the other end, soft yet deep as I remembered it. He said to me, “The more I try to forget you, the more you remain in my heart.” By this time my heart was not sure what to think. Was he being sincere or only feeling the pangs of loneliness that hit all single people every once in a while? He continued, “Be daring. Come visit me. I will send you the ticket.”
Two weeks later I boarded the plane from San Antonio,…

January 24th, 2003
Spiritual Lessons from Vulnerable Lives

Maria (I have given her this name after many years) sat on a blanket next to her mother. They sat on the sidewalk selling small bags of pecans in Nuevo Laredo, Mexico. It was the family’s livelihood. I was six-years-old and on a day trip with my parents. I pulled my dad’s hand and made him stop to buy a bag of pecans. As my dad paid the woman for the pecans, I looked deep into Maria’s eyes. I continue to carry the image of those mysterious black eyes and will never forget them.

Panchito stood in front of me smiling from cheek to cheek. He waited with anticipation for me to take his picture. The only difference between Panchito and any other child of five was that he looked more like a three-year-old due to malnutrition.…

January 19th, 2003
Raquel Taught Me a Lesson about Sloth

I met Raquel one spring day in Kingston, Jamaica. She was a resident at a home for girls who were wards of the state. These young ladies had been taken from their families because of sexual abuse. Raquel sat in a room with her friend Emily.
The room was lit only by the outside light coming in through the glassless windows. It was filled with tables, chairs, and three sewing machines. I asked Raquel and Emily if they knew how to sew. Emily answered in the affirmative and continued by telling me that they made the clothes for the younger girls in the home. I asked Raquel and Emily how old they were. Emily answered that they were both thirteen. Raquel had not said a word since I entered the room. She only looked at me with untrusting…

January 14th, 2003
Love and the Social Pressures of Marriage

“It’s about time you got married, don’t you think…”
This phrase should be deemed the cultural stigma that we cannot get past. First, when I was in my early twenties, my childbearing years were quickly passing, and everyone (except my mother who to this day says she’s too young to be grandmother) just looked at me in wonder. Even that cousin—the one no one thought would ever get married—found his mate.
In the year 2001 twelve babies were born in my extended family. Suddenly, I was the only one who did not arrive at family gatherings adorned with a diaper bag, stroller, walker, pictures and, of course, the camcorder (we don’t want to miss any of those special moments).
My…

January 2nd, 2003
A Reflection on the Three Kings

He stood with a table filled with goods for sale. I tried hard to keep my eyes focused through the beginnings of a blizzard. It was 1995. It was Berlin. It was winter. It was cold . He stood looking at me with a smile. I approached his table, now gently covered with snowflakes. It was filled with toy cars, jewelry boxes, and those dolls that keep appearing inside one another when you open one (then the next and so on…). I asked where the items came from. He told me, “Russia,” and he smiled as he pointed toward the ruins of the Berlin Wall.
We stood not more than twenty feet from what had once been the border between East and West Germany. With ten steps, I could be under the great design of the checkpoint. He said to…

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