Thursday, March 18, 2010

A story that needs telling

It’s a heart-wrenching story. But it’s a story that must be told. It’s a story that puts a very human face on what is often discussed in impersonal terms: immigration, illegals, border, them, us, ours.

Enrique’s Journey is the story of a young Honduran boy who traveled to the U.S., mostly on top of trains, to find his mother who had migrated North to find work years before. This book was required reading for Bluffton first-year students and for seniors in the Capstone course.

Now alumni, parents and friends are invited to join with Bluffton students, faculty and staff for a discussion of Enrique’s Journey with author Sonia Nazario at 11 a.m. April 7.

Just having read the prologue, I am so intrigued. It’s going to be one of those books that I won’t be able to put down once started. It tells of the desperation mothers feel to justify leaving their children to find work in order to support their children and the abandonment children feel without their mother’s presence.

Lazario wrote in the prologue, “Latina migrants ultimately pay a steep price for coming to the United States. They lose their children’s love… People are losing what they value most.”

It would be a great story if it was fiction. The bond of a mother and son and the lengths they go to show that love, the intrigue and danger encountered on top the “Train of Death,” the kindness of strangers along the way.

Unfortunately it’s not fiction. It is all too real. And it is an important part of the “immigration issue” which should not be overlooked.

Join us for the book discussion on April 7, either in person or online.

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