The Face of Justice

To me, justice can really only be understood in a relational context.  

 If no one you know experiences the ramifications of unjust healthcare, immigration law, education, or working conditions, then you can easily forget when life gets too busy.  You can easily step back if it feels like a lost cause or if the movement loses momentum.  You can simply choose to ignore it when something else comes along.

Social justice without relationships will be fruitless.

“Issues” don’t ask you the hard questions when you think about giving up – they don’t ask you through tears to borrow your social security number or tell you that they can’t read at age 11.  “Issues” don’t hold your hand when disappointment strikes, when the unspeakable happens, or when you are wounded along the way.  “Issues” don’t bake the cake when celebration is in order or tell their stories with passion and inspiration that remind you why this endeavor was so important in the first place.

Social justice without relationships is unsustainable.

I never chose immigration as my “issue.”  Immigration met me at church, asked for my phone number, laughed at all my jokes, and offered to spend the rest of its life with me.  Sure, the papers are in order now and you might think that I could choose to forget. 

But I can’t.

The people I’ve met along the way… with all their individual stories and experiences… have forever changed my life. 


  1. Beautiful and thought provoking, Sarah!

  2. Thank you so much, Becky.

  3. love this and i feel the same way!! (not in the romantic relationship sense) but i can definitely say that immigration chose me as well.

  4. Great to hear from you, Kristen. People definitely capture us! I clicked over to your blog, and I hope your time in Panama is meaningful. :)


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