Friday, December 20, 2013

POSADA 2013: Is there room at the inn at the CHA’s Lathrop Homes?


What: POSADA in support of Public and Affordable Housing at Lathrop Homes
Where: Cotter Boy's and Girl's Club 2915 N Leavitt, Chicago
When: Saturday, Dec 21 2013 2:00 p.m.
VISUAL: Couple dressed as Mary and Joseph lead procession around perimeter of Lathrop Homes, re-enacting story of seeking shelter at the first Christmas

Contact: John McDermott - - 773-617-3949 (English and Spanish)

Is there room at the inn at the CHA’s Lathrop Homes?
Logan Square churches challenge policy 
that shuts out housing seekers

On the heels of a Dec 10 community meeting that brought over 400 people out to demand an immediate opening of unused units to people in need of housing, on Saturday a coalition of churches, community organizations, and residents associations will hold a holiday Posada -- a Latin American traditional re-enactment of the search by the parents of Jesus for hospitality -- that does double-duty dramatizing the plight of people left in the cold by Chicago housing policies.

Original poster: Andrew Willis
"For years hundreds of units at Lathrop have been left vacant instead of being made available to families in our community that need them," said Lissette Castañeda, co-chair of the Logan Square Neighborhood Association (LSNA) Housing Committee. "There's a new plan for Lathrop, but it would make things even worse."

The president of the Lathrop Homes Local Advisory Council, Mildred Pagan, added, "They're trying to sell us on how the new plan will make everything so 'nice.' What would be really 'nice' would be to rehab all our buildings now to provide housing for families that need a decent place to live."

"When people from the neighborhood gather at the church for our weekly Wednesday Community Dinner, many are talking about the lack of affordable housing, and of places that people of limited means can go to escape the cold," said Rev. Erik Christensen, pastor at St. Luke's Lutheran Church of Logan Square. "At this time of year, in particular, we are spurred to action on behalf of those with an urgent need for one of those 750 empty units."

Community members affiliated with LSNA, the residents' committee, and the Logan Square Ecumenical Allicance (which includes St. Luke's) will gather at 2 p.m. at Cotter Boy's and Girl's Club.The Posada will walk the perimeter of the Lathrop Homes, stopping on 3-4 occasions to seek shelter, led by a Mary and a Joseph in costume. At each pre-arranged stop, we will sing the Posada song, and we will be turned away. One of the stops will be an empty CHA unit to symbolize CHA’s act of turning away thousands of families city-wide in their Plan For Transformation and Plan Forward.


LSNA: The Campaign to Preserve the Lathrop Homes

Logan Square Ecumenical Alliance (LSEA) Member congregations:
First Evangelical Lutheran Church of Logan Square
Kimball Avenue Church
Humboldt Park United Methodist Church
St. Luke's Lutheran Church of Logan Square

Logan Square Neighborhood Association
ALSO (Alliance of Local Service Organizations)

We are grateful to Thrivent Financial for Lutherans for its generous support of this and other events of the Logan Square Ecumenical Alliance.


(Also see the full photo gallery on Flickr!)

"Mary" and "Joseph" seeking room at the inn.
Posada procession
Pastors Erik and Luis lead the Posada song
"Please - is there shelter here?"
Inside at last! Cotter Boys and Girls Club
Closing prayer: Pastor Ramon and other Ecumenical Alliance pastors.
THANK YOU! to everyone who participated!
Photos courtesy FJJ.

THE POSADA SONG (from Wikipedia)

Afuera (Outside)

En nombre del cielo
Os pido posada
Pues no puede andar
Mi esposa amada

(In the name of heaven)
(I request you grant us shelter)
(Given that she cannot walk)
(She my beloved wife)

Adentro (Inside)

Aquí no es mesón
Sigan adelante
Yo no puedo abrir
No sea algún tunante

(This is not an Inn)
(Please continue ahead)
(I can not open)
(You may be a robber)

Afuera (Outside)

No seas inhumano
Tennos caridad
Que el Rey de los cielos
Te lo premiará

(Do not be inhumane)
(grant us charity)
(Since the King of heavens)
(Will prize you for that)

Adentro (Inside)

Ya se pueden ir
Y no molestar
porque si me enfado
Os voy a apalear

(You can already go away)
(and do not bother)
(because if I get upset)
(I will beat you up)

Afuera (Outside)

Venimos rendidos
Desde Nazaret
Yo soy carpintero
De nombre José

(We come exhausted)
(From Nazareth)
(I am a carpenter)
(Named Joseph)

Adentro (Inside)

No me importa el nombre
Déjenme dormir
Porque ya les digo
Que no hemos de abrir

(I don't care about your name)
(Let me go to sleep)
(Because, as I said)
(We shall not open)

Afuera (Outside)

Posada te pide
Amado casero
Por sólo una noche
La reina del cielo

(She asks you shelter)
(Dear innkeeper)
(for just one night)
(She, the queen of heaven)

Adentro (Inside)

Pues si es una reina
Quien lo solicita
¿Cómo es que de noche
Anda tan solita?

(So, if it's a queen)
(who's asking for it,)
(how is it that at night)
(she travels so alone?)

Afuera (Outside)

Mi esposa es María
Es reina del cielo
Y madre va a ser
Del divino verbo

(My wife is Mary)
(She's the Heavenly Queen)
(And she'll be mother)
(Of the divine word)

Adentro (Inside)

¿Eres tú José?
¿Tu esposa es María?
Entren peregrinos
No los conocía

(Are you Joseph?)
(Is your wife Mary?)
(Come in, pilgrims)
(I did not know you)

Afuera (Outside)

Dios pague, señores
Vuestra caridad
Y que os colme el cielo
De felicidad

(May God pay, sirs)
(your charity)
(And may heaven swamp you)
(With happiness)

Adentro (Inside)

Dichosa la casa
Que alberga este día
A la virgen pura
La hermosa María

(Joyful be the house)
(That this day hosts)
(The pure virgin)
(The beautiful Mary)


¡Entren santos peregrinos!
¡Reciban éste rincón!
Que aunque es pobre la morada
¡Se las doy de corazón!

¡Cantemos con alegría!
¡Todos al considerar!
¡Que Jesús, José y María
nos vinieron hoy a honrar!

(Come in, holy pilgrims!)
(Receive this corner!)
(Because, even though the place is poor)
(I offer it to you from my heart!)

(Lets sing with joy!)
(Everyone at the thought!)
(That Jesus, Joseph and Mary)
(Came today to honour us!)

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