Friday, June 29, 2018


Day 9

Hey Team

Today we got up at our usual time of around 7:15, but had to leave for the dining hall early because we were going to Angel Island. After a quick (but still delicious) breakfast of chocolate chip pancakes, the whole group met by the bus stop. Anne informed us that one of our buses had unfortunately broke down, so we had to all pile into one bus. Once we arrived in Tiburon, our group loaded onto a ferry, and Mike and I picked out a beautiful, yellow, Tuscan style house as our favorite. Once we arrived at Angel Island, our group was met by a park ranger who talked to us about the island's history. Then, we began the long, hilly, 144-step climb to the detainment center. Us native San Franciscans struggled a bit with the hills, because we hadn't had to face one in a week. Needless to say, our whole group was very excited to reach the detainment center. Our tour guide, Lynn gave a thorough introduction to the detainment center's history, and its importance to immigration history.  I found it interesting that Lynn believed Angel and Ellis Island had fewer similarities than I thought. Angel Island was more of a detainment center, meaning people ended up staying on the island as opposed to passing through. Our group then split up into two, because we couldn't all fit into the detainment center at once. Our group walked through four different barracks, made up of rusty, three storied bunks. On the beds, the Park had put replicas of belongings of people who lived there. Lynn also pointed out the poetry carved into some of the walls of the barracks. I though these pieces of art demonstrated the genuine fear those detained had. I couldn't helped but realize the similarities between poems by parents separated from their kids and the current immigration system in our country. After the tour, our group switched with the other group and ate lunch before heading back to the ferry. After returning to Sonoma State, we had a bit of time to change before dinner. Dinner was delicious. I continue to be amazed by the quality of food here at Sonoma State, because I have heard some traumatizing stories about dorm food. That night, we talked to Bishop Barry Beisner, who is the Bishop of the Episcopal Diocese of Northern California. Like Bishop Katharine, Bishop Barry (to quote Ryan) is dope. He shared three readings with us from the Bible, all which had the message of treating humans as humans, regardless of race, gender, or sexual orientation. He did a great job engaging our group in meaningful conversation, and it was apparent the importance he had to the diocese. For our evening activity, we watched Coco (yes I cried at the end). 

I have really enjoyed the activities and conversations we have had during the week. The people here are also so much fun to talk to, and I have enjoyed talking to them about school and interests. 


Thursday, June 28, 2018

Day 7

Today we covered a lot! First, we learned about restorative justice from a dean of an inner city public school in Oakland. Restorative justice is a system that focuses on rehabilitation rather than punishment by emphasizing the feelings of the victims, considering the perspective of the perpetrator and encouraging and facilitating conversations between both parties. In this particular school restorative justice lowered the suspension rate by 87%. We then talked about implementing restorative justice in our court system and on a smaller level in conflicts in our own lives. I really loved learning a way that could eliminate many problems we face in our society, like overcrowding in prisons, repeat offenders, and the fact that the victim doesn't always feel recognized. After learning about restorative justice I am very inspired to implement it in my own life and I wish that my school had a focus on it.

After lunch we had a panel of high level Episcopalians Skype in to discuss relevant issues, such as the separation of children at the border and racism, with us. I found having many perspectives very valuable to building my own opinion. Also, I was inspired by the people to use my faith to act in the world, whether in the church or in politics. After lunch and free time, an indigenous woman from the Pomo tribe named Rose came to talk to us about the suffering the people on reservations face and the historical trauma that haunts them. Talking with her about the past was a visceral reminder of the alcoholism and suicide that remains in their communities today. However, along with the pain, Rose also taught us about the vibrant culture of the Pomo people. I learned about their expertly woven baskets, usage of tule reeds, vibrant dances, and spiritual practices. I loved learning about full integration of the surrounding environment. It inspired me to respect natural non invasive species and conserve finite resources. I also liked to learn about the spiritual practices of other cultures; when we did a Pomo traditional prayer using sage I felt like I was learning about my own spirituality from another angle.

- Camilla

Sent from my iPhone

Day 6

Boom clap readers, 
We got around today! We woke up and got a quick breakfast in before grabbing a bag lunch and hopping on our bus. They surprised us with one big, comfy, luxurious bus and one small, cramped, not luxurious bus. Guess which one I was on? Making up for that slight inconvenience, however, was the fact that Bishop Katherine gave us a talk about the oceans. Bishop Katherine is dope. She studied Oceanography at Stanford and Oregon State (go Beavers) where she was stationed on a research base similar to the one we visited later. After a relatively long trip on the bus we arrived at the Bodega Bay Research Center. Soon after, half of us went to a small beach/cove for about 20 minutes. I think that was late addition to the itinerary when they realized not all of us could go at once. After our little excursion we got to go have the short lecture and tour around the center (not gonna lie I talked to Bishop Katherine most of the time). It was actually quite striking though. The amount of trash and pollution in our waters is obscene and the toll it is taking on the wildlife is no better. After that informative visit we packed back into the sardine can we called a bus and made a jaunt down to the Marin Headlands to learn about the area and its history, like the lighthouse and foghorn. After that we went down the hill to the Marine Mammal Center to learn more about the indigenous species. That was a very interesting tour and the work they do down there is quite noble and underappreciated. If it wasn't for my job at and loyalty to Chipotle, I would love to volunteer there. Anyway we got to see the animals they were rehabilitating there, like sea lions and otters, and learn about how they were cared for. After this,  we headed down to Rodeo Beach where we frolicked on the rocky sand and had a small service and Eucharist with Bishop Katherine and Bishop Barry (also dope), the Bishop.of the Diocese of Northern California where all.of the other kids' churches are. We sat down at the picnic tables afterward and feasted on exquisite Subway sandwiches and chips. Finally once we were adequately fed we drove back to the campus and had a wonderful lecture from Bishop Katherine on a range of topics including the ocean and its condition, immigration, the church, our future, and anything else we had questions about. I truly do urge all of you at home reading this to do some research into her and watch her speak because she is honestly astounding and I can't begin to do her justice on this. Finally, tired and with full bellies and brains, we retired back to our dorms. I am still having trouble getting used to my dorm because of both the size of the room and the lack of Bo sharing it with me. It was a very long, fulfilling, and fun day and we are all having a good time excluding some homesickness. 

Love to all and Jabwow forever,

Dinner at Sonoma State

Angel Island Detention Center