Day 254 Nov 25, 2020: "I am I, and you are you and we are both each other."
Our friend and mentor Hank Mattimore is passing slowly away. AS chair of the Sonoma County Juvenile Justice Commission he advocated for children, juveniles in detention and parents in need. His fan club is huge. Hank finds the presence of God in the ordinary things of daily life - "from the yearning of a foster child for the dad he never had, to the sound of waves lapping against the shore and the magic of a stranger's kindness. He takes his inspiration not as much from the dogmas of organized religion as from the miracles of everyday life. It is here, in the present and in the faces of children that he finds the God of loveliness." He writes and lives wisely - living and acting for the radical kinship we so desire. He writes:
Racially we are a rainbow of colors but we all bleed red. Religiously, we worship in different temples and churches but reverence the same higher power. When a baby cries, we pay attention, whether the infant is born in Brooklyn or Guatemala. We know what it is to lose a loved one. Our hearts are touched at weddings or graduations.
The most important thing in the world for us is to see our children succeed in life. We yearn to live in peace with our brothers and sisters. In the deepest recesses of our hearts we long to love and be loved.
"I am I, and you are you and we are both each other."
I'm struck by the humble words he shared with us on Facebook about his death:
All my life I thought that the best way to die is quickly via an accident or sudden heart attack. But here I am leaving my life on earth rather slowly on hospice and receiving palliative care.
But you know what? I find it satisfying to be able to contact old friends and say my farewells and ask their forgiveness or thank them for being part of my life. I am also experiencing firsthand the love my kids and grandkids are showing me. It’s not all bad dying a little bit at a time. I see it now with a different perspective and am grateful for the opportunity to go slowly and consciously into a new life.
- Hank Mattimore
Comments from Hank's Facebook page:
I love you. The power of your love and sincere friendship will outlive us both. I’ve shared the stories of our meeting and the thoughtful ways you befriended me and later spoke up for me. My children know of your deeds and I’m sure their’s will as well. Thank you for taking the time to see and encourage potential in a poor, fatherless, skinny, Black kid. God bless you.
Thank you for being part of my life Hank at a very vulnerable time when I just lost my husband and had a young son to raise on my own. Your wit and wisdom always shone a light in my darkest times. So thanks. Your loving forgiveness of the kids you worked with was a lesson to me. Just love them. "Ya grows or ya dies" sums you up - because you've taught me Hank life is a choice - you can grow or die. You have continued to grow always... because of this Hank Mattimore, your spirit will never die. Thank you for shining your light on me and my son Liam. Even all the way across the Pacific in Australia x
Announcement #1 CTA for Advent 2020
Welcome to your your one-stop guide to Call To Action’s Advent 2020 activities! This hub of events, news, and calls to action is a living document that we will update throughout the month.
We chose Advent as a time for coordinated action because of its symbolic resonance. Advent is the beginning of the Catholic year. It is the time of preparation for the birth of Christ, a time of gestation, anticipation, and longing. Call To Action’s strategy working groups, Re/Generators, chapters, and members have planned a series of events to mark the season. This is the culmination of our 2020 National Campaign, a project to strengthen the movement for church reform through strategic collaboration across strategies, issues, and geographies.
We hope that you will join our communities in this season of transformation!
Northern California Sabeel Webinar December 15th
(sponsored in part by our Emmaus Community)
Mother to Son
Well, son, I’ll tell you:
Life for me ain’t been no crystal stair.
It’s had tacks in it,
And boards torn up,
And places with no carpet on the floor—
But all the time
I’se been a-climbin’ on,
And reachin’ landin’s,
And turnin’ corners,
And sometimes goin’ in the dark
Where there ain’t been no light.
So boy, don’t you turn back.
Don’t you set down on the steps
’Cause you finds it’s kinder hard.
Don’t you fall now—
For I’se still goin’, honey,
I’se still climbin’,
And life for me ain’t been no crystal stair.
BY LANGSTON HUGHES
The Impossible Dream - Cynthia Erivo
Leann Rimes sings Billy Joel's 'Lullabye (Goodnight, My Angel)
"Day By Day" ~ Godspell (1973)