Refugee Art is a blog to share the testimonies of refugee mothers and children through their mixed media art reflections. I have had the privilege of being a volunteer chaplain in various capacities and contexts with immigrants seeking asylum since August 2014, which has included facilitating art as pastoral care for asylum seekers. Most of the art participants are fleeing from the “Northern Triangle” which includes Guatemala, El Salvador, and Honduras. The mothers have asked me to share their art reflections so that your hearts will be warmed and compassion and empathy extended to these immigrant families seeking safe asylum in the U.S.
These refugee families desire to share their experiences of trauma, courage, and faith seeking asylum because they want the world to know about the violence and suffering in their homelands–their catalyst for seeking safety in the U.S. They have come to the U.S., not because they want a so-called “better life” for their children. They come so that their children might have bare life, for to remain in their countries (or to return) could mean death. They are here because they need safe asylum.
Officially launching on Monday, May 1, 2017, each blog post will feature artwork created by refugee mothers and children as they express their experiences as immigrants seeking asylum. Each blog post also will include a translated poetic reflection of one of their personal testimonies of why they made the difficult decision to leave their homeland, their experiences during the treacherous journey through Mexico, their asylum-seeking process in the U.S., and their hopes and dreams for their children’s safe future. Their stories also will resonate with their amazing faith in God and that confidence that God has “a hope and a future” (Jeremiah 29:11) and does, in fact, desire good things for them.