Sister Maggie Sierra, M.M. has been working as a Border Chaplain for seven years in El Paso Texas. Many families arriving at the border are from Central America and Mexico, they’re seeking asylum in the United States. Some are fleeing political violence and oppression, some are seeking health care, and others are desperately trying to make a decent living in order to provide for their families.
Sister Maggie has a great deal of extra compassion and understanding for the children who arrive at the border as orphans, since she lost her own beloved father at the age of six.
“At the border one can see the pain in the children’s eyes and faces…their sadness and their joy,” Sister Maggie says.
Sister Maggie helps these children find happiness and love through her passion with art. She utilizes art therapy as well as puppets and origami (artistic paper folding) to help brighten their days.
“I use old business cards or card stock paper to make frogs that when touched can actually jump a short distance on a table top or floor! This seems to bring great delight to the young and old, along with other origami art pieces like airplanes, frogs and cranes.”
In addition to art therapy, Sister Maggie also teaches English to some of the children and adults who arrive in El Paso.
In her ministry, Sister Maggie has encountered some very special people. “I want to share a story about a 14-year-old young woman, whom I will call “K”, who speaks Spanish as her first language. A year ago K was diagnosed with leukemia and came to the U.S. for better medical treatment. Her chemotherapy leaves her weak and sometimes nauseated for a day or two afterwards. K receives art therapy at the hospital and I am teaching her and her mother English. K is also teaching me, she is showing me the meaning of being courageous. K has a strong will to live and a family who loves and supports her, which is crucial in a child’s life!”
YOUR GIFT will help Sister Maggie and all of our Sisters continue to do their great mission work!
Sister Maggie, like all Maryknoll Sisters on mission, follow the example of Jesus by walking and serving in the midst of the people who need her, using whatever resources she can obtain apart from her own hands, head and heart.
Thank you, and may God bless you as the Sisters and the people they help bless you!