The Power of Story
As Kelly mentioned in her blog earlier today, there are people at this conference from 20 countries around the world. Each of the 150 delegates here brings their own experience of mining, of faith, and of justice to the table. For me, the most powerful aspect of being here is hearing different people talking about their experience. It’s the power of story.
This morning, we heard from Bishop Ramazzini of Guatemala. He shared stories of how open air mining has destroyed the original land in his home. He talked about the promises that the land would be repaired when the mine was closed. He described the scars on the land caused by the mines which will need lots of time to heal.
He asked a powerful question of the assembled: “Life or gold- what is the important thing in the end?” As I hear the stories of the damage that is being done to the land, to communities, to people I find myself thinking a lot about Ramazzini’s question. Because I know I am complicit in the injustices being discussed. I sit here typing on my laptop with my cellphone in my pocket and a gold wedding ring on my finger. All of these contain metals which have been mined under what could well be dubious circumstances.
Bishop Ramazzini finished his address by calling on the assembled to work together to form an authentic global solidarity. “This conference is so important. Together, we can show that another planet is possible.”
His story is only one of the incredible stories that have come to this conference. Each one of us has our own story to share. And as we continue talking, praying, and sharing together, those stories will weave together into a chorus of solidarity. We will work together to show another way, that another planet *is* indeed possible.