Bakersfield, CA. Rally for Reform

Bakersfield, CA. Rally for Reform

Written by: Sister Ruth King, SSS

June 15, 2013

Our bus arrived at Yokuts Park in Bakersfield around 3:00 PM. Led by Sr. Simone, we Nuns On The Bus joined the over 150 people from local organizations to deliver a message to Congressman Kevin McCarthy to act on “Comprehensive Immigration Reform Now.”

The rally was started by Fr. Estrada, and with his opening prayer he reminded us that the farmworkers were in the field under the sun (it was very hot that day) working the whole day. Then labor leader Roberto de la Cruz shared his experience of organizing immigrant workers, and Dolores Huerta shared her experience with the United Farm Workers. She journeyed with them for several decades. Although she was over 80 years old, her spirit really inspired me.

Roberto called everyone to gather for the march. Sr. Simone and Dolores Huerta were at the front, and all of us followed to march to Congressman McCarthy’s office building. This march symbolized the journey of the struggle of all farmworkers who provide food for all people in California. They have suffered the unjust immigration policies for generations.

The rally continued in front of Congressman McCarthy’s office. Sr. Simone shared the journey of Nuns On The Bus from the very beginning on May 28 until today -- how she and other Sisters met the people and shared their struggle and suffering. This journey made the connections from one place to another place, and all the people expressed their appreciation at the rally so solidarity became true. A young woman named Paula, who is a DREAMer, shared her journey and hope for the future.

The rally finished with Rabbi Cheryl Rosenstein’s blessing and Pastor Dave Stabenfeldt’s closing prayer.