Foreword by Stan Lerner: this is a story about the Homeboy Industries Fundraiser, at Union Station, which I attended Saturday night. I did not walk into this event with the slightest intention of writing a story. But I walked out knowing that I had no choice other than to pen some thoughts from the heart about this important and moving experience.
Do you believe in God? I believe that most of us do. However, I think that we live in a world so filled with noise, and by noise I mean all of the material distractions of life, that much of our belief in God is relegated to the quiet of our subconscious. Given that most Americans enjoy a life of considerable physical comfort and an abundance of entertainment we often tend to seek out an individual audience with God primarily in times of trouble, angst and or designated times—around the observance schedules of our respective religious organizations. And while I could write at length about the state of our relationship with God, I will depart from the broader subject and talk about one, ideal, reality—it was very much in the world, very much in the City of Angels, very much at Union Station on Saturday night.
So, I’m asking you now to venture from the norm for a few minutes as you read this blog. Move God from your subconscious belief to the forefront of your consciousness and imagine the world as the place it would be if we all had the strength and wisdom to do what’s right all of the time. Seriously, take a few minutes and imagine this, imagine who and what you would be…
Saturday night’s event brought together a large group of people of different ethnicities and religious beliefs for one purpose, to raise money to support an organization that does God’s work here on Earth. Downtownster has written about this organization before and the story that most of us know, in our day-to-day state of mind is fairly simple—a guy named Father Greg Boyle gives ex-gang members jobs baking, working in a café or screen printing T-shirts. I should add that Father Boyle fits the part, full priest gear, white-beard, round glasses and a way with words. But we all know that there’s much more to the story (Father Boyle knows this.)—our part of the story, the part where on occasion we don’t delegate the responsibility to the guy that looks the part, but we step up onto the stage and say that we’re also part of the show—this is transformation, this is transcendence and quite possibly the dawning of a new age of enlightenment, this enlightenment one of not only forgiveness, but of reconciliation. Continue reading