Have you witnessed the migration of butterflies the past month or so? I get a little thrill each time I see one fueling up on its long journey to Mexico. Many are tiny, some are stunning in size and color. One day as I sat outside reading, little shadows flitted over my pages. It brings a smile to my face. Flutters of hope.

This fall has shown a resurgence of the lovely insects. I remember reading bulletins from the Parks Association about the drastic reduction in numbers in recent years due to the decline in the availability of milk weed. And we were threatened with the extinction if we were not mindful of cultivating a better environment for butterflies. Did you read it? Because they’re making a comeback.

I wonder if you did because something happened to see such a recovery. I wonder, too because in this season of change, of migration, transition, and election (there I said it), are you cultivating a place for those who need hope?

I hear their voices. I am listening. And I will not ignore them.

I hear you parents of special needs children. Your voice has weight. You are my friends and my family, and I will not discount your needs when I vote.

I hear you brothers and sisters of different colors. Your lives matter. You are my teachers, pastors, friends, and neighbors. Our children play together in our yards and schools, and I will not ignore your pleas for justice.

I hear you folks of other religions and nationalities.You can find shelter here. I do not fear your presence. I welcome your industriousness, your perspective, your resilience. We are a nation of refugees. We are a nation that represents liberty. We say,

“Give me your tired, your poor,

Your huddled masses yearning to breathe free,

The wretched refuse of your teeming shore.

Send these, the homeless, tempest-tossed, to me:

I lift my lamp beside the golden door.”

I hear you survivors of abuse. I hear you, I know you, I am you. You are not alone. It is right to demand more for yourself and for others.

I hear you Christians, who struggle with how did we get here? There is no trump card to be played that can fix what is broken. WE are the answer to the hard questions. I know your dissonance. I know how hard it is to awake to a world that is no longer what you thought it was. But, doesn’t it also leave a taste of freedom?

Our confidence is not of this world. We are a rescued people. A people of hope. So we can give to Cesar what is Cesar’s and follow our Savior into the world with Love lighting our way.

When it seems like you are compromising on your brave stance for the sanctity of life, consider the sanctity of life for all image bearers. I challenge us to broaden our imagination. No matter who is in office, let’s dream and create a better world for women. Let us, the Church, unite against poverty. Let us open our homes to children who have no home. Let us embrace differences. Let us truly value all life and work together to loose the chains of injustice in our nation.

We can abandon fear, but we must not abandon each other.

I hear you. All of your hopes and dreams as if carried on delicate wings, destined for a nearly impossible journey. Please, rest here for a moment before you continue on your way. And may a thousand prayers lift you on gentle winds toward home.