A Reflection by Marcia Quintanilla

“Then He said to them, “Follow Me, and I will make you fishers of men.” Matthew 4:19

Recently, I went with some friends to the Youth Advocates Community Night at St. Martin’s Episcopal Church. I walked into a building filled with many young people. Loud hip hop music reverberated throughout the building. As I looked around, I wondered what had drawn them all there; it’s unusual to find such a diverse group of young people gathered in one place these days. I realized that what I seeing was the work of a “fisher” who had gone out into the world to create a different method of fishing, a different method of spreading the gospel of peace and compassion.

I was able to share this experience with my sweet daughter Jaylah. She loved the place and walked around wide-eyed with astonishment as we witnessed the amazing talent that surrounded us – bboys, poppers, crumpers, soccer players. Jaylah did not want to miss one second of the battles, and she urged me walk around and get a clearer view of the dancing.

The feeling of camaraderie was palpable. The support for each other every time someone danced encouraged even me to dance. This gathering felt like the Body of Christ – diversity united by mutual love. It made sense that it all started with a prayer that united everyone and drew our hearts toward the suffering of brothers and sisters in far-off parts of the world, like Nice, France. In that place, it was encouraging to see generations drawn together into the net of kinship and compassion because someone had accepted the challenge to cast that net into obscure waters.

The YA Community Night happens every Thursday at the Island at St. Martin’s Episcopal Church, Houston.