Woman shares story of leaving her family


Staff report



Sister Tracy Kemme, right, and Virginia, an asylum seeker from Guatemala were guest speakers at St. Joseph Catholic Church, Wapakoneta, Sunday afternoon.

Sister Tracy Kemme, right, and Virginia, an asylum seeker from Guatemala were guest speakers at St. Joseph Catholic Church, Wapakoneta, Sunday afternoon.


Courtesy photo

WAPAKONETA — On Sunday afternoon the Petersburg Parishes welcomed Sister Tracy Kemme and Virginia, an asylum seeker from Guatemala, for a presentation at St. Joseph Church, Wapakoneta.

On behalf of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati’s Social Action Office, Kemme provided an informative and inspiring presentation about the history of immigration to the United States, the current state of immigration, and what Christians are called to do to help those forced to leave their homes because of poverty and violence. She noted the many Biblical references to the treatment of strangers, from Leviticus 19 (33 “When a stranger resides with you in your land, you shall not do him wrong. 34 The stranger who resides with you shall be to you as the native among you, and you shall love him as yourself, for you were aliens in the land of Egypt.”) to Matthew 25 ( “I was a stranger, and you welcomed Me.”). Virginia then shared her personal story about leaving her family to try to find a better, safer life in the United States, answering questions from those in attendance.

Pope Francis launched a global campaign on migration last Wednesday. Entitled “Share the Journey” the two-year effort by Caritas International aims to promote the strengthening of relationships between migrants, refugees and communities. It is Caritas’ response to Pope Francis’ call for a culture of encounter and to see people on the move with open hearts and minds.

The Petersburg Parishes of Botkins Immaculate Conception, Fryburg St. John, Rhine St. Lawrence, and Wapakoneta St. Joseph are named for the now-vanished Petersburg settlement (between Wapakoneta and Botkins) from which the parishes emerged in the 19th century. They are served by the Rev. Patrick Sloneker, pastor, and the Rev. Sean Wilson, associate pastor. For more information, call 419-738-4924.

Sister Tracy Kemme, right, and Virginia, an asylum seeker from Guatemala were guest speakers at St. Joseph Catholic Church, Wapakoneta, Sunday afternoon.
https://www.sidneydailynews.com/wp-content/uploads/sites/47/2017/10/web1_Kemme-1.jpgSister Tracy Kemme, right, and Virginia, an asylum seeker from Guatemala were guest speakers at St. Joseph Catholic Church, Wapakoneta, Sunday afternoon. Courtesy photo

Staff report