About Me

Hmm... now how do I say this without making it sound like an online dating profile?
;-p jk jk

My name is Alejandra, I was born in Mexico but raised on the East Coast, USA... Technically I'm not Chicana but I consider myself that more than anything if I had to classify an identity.

Identity... what is that even? Identity.

I was raised Roman Catholic, and by "raised" I mean we had crosses and images of Virgin Mary hanging around the house, we would do the signal of the cross when we got in the car, and my mom would yell out "ay Dios mío!" every once in a while.  We rarely went to church, maybeeee 4 times a year and even then I never got anything out of it.  Nothing against the Spanish Catholic services I attended but it's hard to pay attention when all you can hear are the screaming babies and kids running up and down the pews.

After a series of rough bumps around the age of 19, I lost the little faith in God that I did have.  I would think to myself, "how can there be a God?  He has let all of this happen."  Little did I know that that was God working His mysterious ways.

God put trials and tribulations in front of me at a young age (deportation, divorce, financial issues, abuse, loss of identity, cancer, homelessness, and so much more), ironically causing me to lose faith in God, but because of those t&ts I opened up, really opened up, to the idea of God for the first time in my life.

In 2000 I found the Episcopal Church... or I should say, The Episcopal Church found me.  The Deacon and Campus Minister at the University of Delaware was planning a mission trip for her group to the Dominican Republic.  She was taking a Spanish course at the university at the time and asked the class if they knew anyone fluent in Spanish who might be interested in going, as a translator.  A girl I worked with the year before mentioned my name and gave her my information.  Deacon Cecily reached out to me and I met with her.  At first I was hesitant, not only had I lost faith in religion and God but I didn't know anything about the Episcopal Church.  I was scared.  But she had faith in me, from the moment she met me, she had faith in me, she saw something I couldn't see, something I refused to see.  I ended up going on the trip, meeting a group of amazing young adults, working with children in a Latin community, and traveling and exploring the world.  My eyes were beginning to open, my faith was slowly restoring.  Upon returning home I began attending Sunday services, I joined ECM (Episcopal Campus Ministry), I got confirmed (Deacon being my sponsor), I became an active parishioner.  My eyes were open to faith, God, and the church, but my heart wasn't quite ready yet.

My plan was to go move back home to Mexico to be with  my family after graduating college in Spring 2013.  I was still in a somewhat dark place and wanted to run away.  God of course, had a different plan for me (as He usually does).  Another old friend recommended me at the school she worked at and I was hired as their ELL teacher Summer 2013.  At the same time I was asked by the rector of my parish if I'd be interested in reestablishing their youth group as the youth minister. 
(I was just interrupted with what was probably some of the best news I've ever received, my heart is jumping with joy right now! I'll write a post on it soon!)
But yes, two jobs and an apartment being offered to me... it had to be a sign from God that I was meant to stay right?  So I did just that, I began working my butt off and began my life as a single woman, away from her family, with no real place to call home.  I can't say it was easy but I can say with certainty that it was well worth it.  Working in an amazing school doing what I love, teaching, and working with the youth at my church.  

Still, I didn't feel a connection to God.  There was a connection to my church and to my community but I felt there was something missing.  I didn't feel quite "whole" yet, I had found religion but my spirituality was still lost.  I continued doing what I was doing until Fall 2014.  My parish sent me and a couple other young women on a discernment weekend in a beautiful retreat center.  I had never been on a discernment weekend, I didn't even know what that was.  I arrived with an open heart and an open mind and thank God that I did because it changed me... I found it... the missing puzzle piece.  I found it.  It was there, waiting for me, all I had to do was believe, all I had to do was speak to God with an open and genuine heart and mind... and listen, just be still and listen.

Everything began to make sense now, I had found God, love, but I still didn't have the confidence I needed to accept it and to share it with the world. But that was the first step.  It wasn't until this past Winter 2015 that I had the opportunity to discern again in a beautiful monastery in New York with other young adults from YASC that I found the confidence I needed.  

Finally my heart opened.  How relieving, how beautiful.  How life changing.  And here I am now, writing this "About Me," hoping to spread my love and my faith and my journey with the world... in hope that I could touch at least one person the way Deacon Cecily and Father Paul touched my life  by never losing faith in me. 

Here I am, trying to confidently reflect God's light onto everything I do and everyone I meet.
It's a struggle still, I'd be lying if I said everyday was easy.  But I have faith- in God, myself, the world around me, everyone I encounter and am yet to encounter, LOVE.  I have faith- and sometimes that's all you need.