The Common Good

Fasting And Praying In The Shadows Of The Capitol

Date: December 10, 2013

The small tent, about the width of a subway car, sits on the National Mall in the shadow of the nation's Capitol. In a town where power and influence is determined by money and access, what happens inside this tent might seem irrelevant. But over the last few weeks this tiny structure has become a potent challenge to the ways of Washington.
Each day, people arrive at the tent to fast and pray for immigration reform. Some are powerful political actors and cultural icons. The President and First Lady, Cabinet Secretaries, several celebrities, and members of Congress from both parties have all visited.
However, most visitors are far less well known, though their stories are no less compelling. Some are undocumented immigrants themselves with heartbreaking stories to tell-and most are people of faith. Some have close relatives who are undocumented. Others testify to their own immigrant histories. Many are people whose faith inspires them to support common sense immigration reform.