As I was walking down the street of my neighborhood, I heard a man yelling very loud, "I hate people." He seemed very angry and as I walked by I felt very sad that someone can come to such a place of despair. I thought to myself, "What led him to such a state of being?" I felt powerless to help the man and I didn't know his name. He was a stranger to me. I had never seen him before.
The next day I walked past that same spot on Tacoma Ave. The man was not there this time. All I saw was an empty corner and pavement. But I thought of this man. Where was he now? Is he feeling better? Is he lonely? Is he hungry or cold?
Now every time I walk past that corner, which is several blocks from where I live, I reimagine this space as a sacramental monument. This corner of Tacoma Ave. will help me to cultivate an awareness to the suffering of others in my neighborhood. I want to feel a sense of solidarity with those who are alone in their suffering. Maybe I can even work for a fabric of care to develop more so that others will shout expressions of love instead of hate into the future.