Skip to content

A Human Face

March 31, 2019

“Face of Christ” by Rembrandt (c.1650), Source Flickr (PD-Art, Old-100)

San Diego University has established a digital archive of letters from refugees held at the Otay Mesa Detention Center, while requests for asylum are processed [1][2].  Such detention can last over a year.

The detainees come from Cameroon, India, Pakistan, China, Vietnam, Venezuela, El Salvador, Honduras, Cuba, and elsewhere.  They describe torture, rape, sexual mutilation, honor killings, and vigilantism in these countries of origin.

The letters by detainees speak of loneliness and the pain at separation from children.  They report harsh conditions in detention – poor food, soap and shampoo that cause the skin to itch, and chronic cold.

The letters put a human face on the men, women, and children the Trump Administration has chosen to demonize.  Even without them, however, Christians should be able to recognize the face of Christ.

” ‘… for I was hungry and you gave Me food; I was thirsty and you gave Me drink; I was a stranger and you took Me in; I was naked and you clothed Me; I was sick and you visited Me; I was in prison and you came to Me’ ” (Matt. 25: 35-36).

[1]  New York Times, “ ‘A Light for Me in the Darkness’:  For Migrant Detainees, a Bond Forged by Letter” by Liz Robbins, 2/7/19, https://www.nytimes.com/2019/02/07/us/immigrant-detainee-letters.html.

[2]  The archive can be found at https://digitallibrary.sdsu.edu/islandora/object/sdsu:OtayMesaDetentionCenter.

READERS CAN FIND MY VIEWS ON ABUSE AND ABUSE-RELATED ISSUES AT ANNA WALDHERR A Voice Reclaimed, Surviving Child Abuse https://avoicereclaimed.com

3 Comments
  1. I have heard of sex trafficking being a big issue in these detention camps..
    but I really hoped it was conspiracy theory..
    I wonder if they would allow Christian groups to gather gift bags to aid their suffering..
    This is heartbreaking and the psychological damage will be hard to repair without comfort from Jesus who heals the broken hearted.. Luke 4:18 KJV

  2. Great. I agree with . Thanks for sharing.

Leave a Reply to John Smith Cancel reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

%d bloggers like this: