I occasionally take a day and spend eight hours of silence at a local retreat center. It provides me a chance to think deeply and ask where my sense of calling is leading me. I took part in such a retreat on Nov. 10. One thing I do each time I take part in a silent retreat is to walk the Labyrinth. A Labyrinth gives me a chance to pray or think silently about whatever is deeply concerning me. 

While walking the Labyrinth, I was able to process my feelings of anger, disappointment, and hopelessness. As I drove away from that retreat center, I was able to start thinking positively about the future. It reminded me there are those like the Reverend William Barber who are renewing the call to tell the truth to power.        

I, like many people, have been concerned about a mass deportation of undocumented immigrants. While I abhorred this idea, I felt helpless to prevent it. The Earth Charter calls for us to “Treat all living beings with respect and consideration.” I asked myself what can I do to help prevent this separation of parents from children? How can I prevent the harm to our society that such an action would cause? For those of you who have felt that same sense of pain and helplessness, I have an action you can take.

I attended a meeting sponsored by IndyCan, Indianapolis Congregation Action Network, which asked all who attended to call the White House and request the following:

Ask the President to provide a pardon for all undocumented immigrants not convicted of a violent offense. The phone number to call is 202-456-1111 and must be called between the hours of 9 a.m. and 5 p.m. Monday to Friday.  

I have taken this step and felt the sense of power that comes from taking action. It may be the first of many steps that will be required to protect citizens and non-citizens from our own government. I was both encouraged and empowered in doing this one small thing. My sense of calling and my faith that minor actions can be powerful has been renewed. I recommend you do likewise. 

For all the children of all;

John Drake 


Want to take additional action?

If you live in I&M territory, which includes Muncie, Fort Wayne, South Bend, Marion and Elkhart, check out this announcement from the Sierra Club. Our friends there say "Indiana Michigan Power (I&M) wants to raise our bills to pay for dirty coal and to keep operating AEP-Rockport, a Super Polluter coal plant... This rate increase I&M has proposed is bad for both people and the planet -- bad for people struggling to pay bills, and bad for the planet because even after this project, AEP-Rockport will remain a dirty Super Polluter coal plant, and one of the largest carbon polluters in the nation."

Earth Charter