Fr Juan Carlos Quirarte Méndez SDB
Generations of young Mexicans were born into a fortified border context. The times we live in have led us to change the meaning of some terms. This is the case of the word "border".
Geopolitics has brought about a change in the understanding of the term "border”. It used to mean a place to meet but now it means a barrier, a division, a failed meeting. The other ceases to be my neighbour and becomes the enemy to be kept away.
Meeting someone who is suffering makes us responsible for his well-being. This is the Gospel attitude that we are called to practise and to proclaim. And one very concrete way of looking at this need in our contemporary world is among the displaced, those who migrate, who are seeking refuge due to situations of pain, hunger, persecution that push them to move, to migrate, to seek refuge elsewhere.
We are called to have border feelings, border thoughts, border actions ... But what does this mean? That we must have feelings towards each other, towards those who are different, towards the one who is my neighbour whom I can meet. It means thinking while knowing that there are others who think differently. It means having the courage to think differently, to be innovative.
Our Salesian Congregation is a mosaic of diversity. We are a big family that includes a wide variety of cultures, backgrounds, languages, races, ideas and traditions, but we recognize the richness of that very diversity and the identity of the charism. It does not matter where we happen to live today, we must have the courage to bear witness to our Christian and Salesian commitment. Our faith must lead us to disobey any policies and ideologies that try to impose division and the perception of others as an enemy.
Our Salesian Family has beautiful experiences and lasting initiatives of inclusion, proximity, participation, that bring to life that wonderful phrase of Don Bosco: "It is enough that you are young for me to love you," to which I would add today ... regardless of your origin, race, your past or your way of life.