O beautiful for pilgrim feet: A reflection from the border

CBF Executive Coordinator Suzii Paynter is traveling along the U.S. border this week as part of a delegation of women faith leaders through Faith in Public Life in support of immigrant children and families. Below is a brief update from Paynter with photos from the trip. Follow @cbfinfo and @SuziiSYP on Twitter for additional updates throughout the week. -Editor

It is a long hot road to Tornillo Detention Center at the El Paso port of entry — the barbed wire topped wall took the prayers of these faith leaders and friends as our common lament rose up for the families so unnecessarily separated.

Traveling for Pastors for Texas Children, our lively school bus turned quiet and still as we drew close. One elder Rabbi commenting on Deuteronomic law to never return a refugee to suffering, stood to sing across the desert this verse of “America the Beautiful”:

O beautiful for pilgrim feet,
Whose stern impassion’d stress
A thoroughfare for freedom beat
Across the wilderness!
America! America! God mend thine ev’ry flaw,
Confirm thy soul in self-control,
Thy liberty in law!


The wall accepts prayers at the El Paso Port of Entry.


Rabbi Sharon and CBF Executive Coordinator Suzii Paynter are two delegates through Faith in Public Life.


Called to prayer by shofar


Interfaith tears for children


Rev. William Coleman


Delores Huerta, a true light, calls for fasting 24 hours for the 2,400 children separated from families.


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