Yakima and Portland

Bishop Sevilla, S.J.

Yakima –> Portland – Great, yet long trip from Yakima back to Portland along the Columbia gorge route. Just a word of warning if you are traveling to Spokane, I would suggest not staying at the Comfort Inn on North Division street. It was dusty, had exploding wall plugs, spotty wireless and hot water that takes a good five minutes to warm up. Other than that it’s great. Enough travel lodging news. Back to the two interviews I taped, the interview with Bishop Carlos Sevilla, S.J. in Yakima was very spiritual and uplifting. I have known Carlos since he was a teacher when I was in high school. Church law now has him retiring after reaching age 75. I found him to be vigorous and energetic with his trademark wicked sense of humor as usual. The Yakima diocese is one of the poorest in the country with a large population of migrant workers moving from field to field trying to make enough to feed their families. Many of them are undocumented, and have become the backbone of the local economies. Carlos bristled at the misuse of the words “social justice” by the right who, in actuality, have no idea what the words really mean. The Gospels suggest social justice, the Bill of Rights, the amendments to the constitution and indeed the Declaration of Independence are all about social justice. Doh! Anyway, the visit was a spiritual injection and he was incredibly gracious. Anyone who sits down in front of my camera and answers questions from me, has to be a saint.

The long trip back to Portland was uneventful. As we were traveling at warp speed down the gorge toward Portland the sky changed several colors as the sun set behind the spotty cloud cover. It was beautiful and distracting. By the time we reached Portland, I was stiff and very tired. I am still tired and I slept all night.

Today’s interview with the Professional Development coordinator at Jesuit High was also a serendipitous conversation. The focus of her answers was on Jesuit pedagogy, which is a high priced word for a method of teaching. She was able to explain it better than I would have in terms of an approach to the classroom, coaching and service. You will need to buy the DVD so you can hear the definition. The time spent was very enlightening and as much as I was tired and drained from the last few stops and interviews, she got my dormant mind back in gear.

Thursday we finish up with an interview with the master of novices at the Jesuit novitiate, then home.

and so it goes….

A little song, a little dance, a little coffee down your pants... 40 years in the high school classroom and now on my own. A chance to think about stuff and how it affects everyone, not just me. Now residing in Oregon volunteering for a refugee organization.

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