Authored by: The Rev. Clelia Pinza-Garrity, LCSW
I am deep into preparing for my mid-August trip to Cape Town in South Africa. I will be joining The Rev. Dr. Michael Battle and 10 other folks from throughout the U.S. to study the work of Archbishop Desmond Tutu, particularly as it relates to his commitment to restorative justice and reconciliation, his contemplative practices, and his understanding of Ubuntu theology. Dr. Battle was Archbishop Tutu’s chaplain for two years and was ordained a priest by Tutu in 1993. He is the Director of the Desmond Tutu Center at General Theological Seminary. You can follow my travels at Grey Dove Travels.
This incredible opportunity will be the final piece of formal study for me as I prepare the lectures and meditative experiences for my two-day retreat, For I Was A Stranger…, to be offered December 15-16 here in the Diocese of the Central Gulf Coast. The retreat will offer both an educational and an experiential experience that explores the field of forced immigration in the United States of America from both historical and theological points of view. Included will be the history as well as the theological, psychosocial, economic, political, legal, ethical, economic, and cultural aspects of our past and current forced immigration system, and will explore areas in which the Episcopal Church, at both the local and the national level, can develop a compassionate theology and praxis of discipleship that both reflects and responds to the complex current immigration and refugee patterns and resettlement challenges in the U.S. Throughout, the curriculum will include contemplative opportunities to reflect on didactic material presented and to enter into spiritual practices designed to enhance learning by establishing a deeper connection between the Holy Spirit – the divine - and the didactic. Music and spiritual direction will be used as a mediator bridging the spiritual and educational materials.
I am delighted to announce that I will be joined by Joe Taylor, our diocese’s wonderful spiritual direction resource. I am excited by the ways in which he intends to bring us closer to God as, together, we study the complex but all too prevalent concept of forced migration.
Only 10 spots are available. It is not too early to register. For information, please call or text me at 561-171-1890. Peace, Clelia