|It is handy at Christmas time that the Farm Worker's color is red because there are seasonal tablecloths at hand.|
Annually the Sin Fronteras center in El Paso does its best to make the Christmas season a bit brighter for the agricultural day laborers they serve. This year's celebration also combined a devotion to Our Lady of Guadalupe, postponed from December 12 due to illness of a key organizer.
|Our Lady of Guadalupe's image carried in procession into the Farm Workers Center.|
|Devotions were prayer and sung with great care and reverence.|
The noon meal featured a hearty posole, and the stew-like soup was so spicy that the ladies teasingly wondered how my gringa tastebuds were doing as I was about 25% through my big bowl. [Answer: Doing fine!]
|Posole contained hominy and pork and is topped with raw veggies the individual could add to suit individual taste.|
|No caption is needed: the food was good and the eating was serious!|
|Music at high volume is a plus at Latino gatherings, here the speaker system is assembled.|
The canned food and nonperishables that were given to El Centro for the Christmas season were divided up into individual "dispensas"--boxes and bags for the holidays. The ag workers earn shockingly little and have families to support, so every item of assistance is worthy.
|Women prepare the donations for distribution.|
|Workers sign in for the party and file in past the festive, lighted tree.|
There will be another gift-giving celebration that will include the children of the farm workers' families for the Feast of the Epiphany in January. After all, the Kings (or Magi) were the ones who got the gift ball rolling, and the Latinos remember them better than others of us who have long -forgotten Christmas by then.
|One of the staffer's children--adorable!|
I am a helper who works behind the scenes in this project. Often behind a closed door, I don't associate with the farm workers directly much. But I just love to be with them, when I have the chance. Just their demeanor enchants me.
I did a quick tour around the room with my movie cam, with the intent of presenting each of them with a portrait photo. I may delete this soon, but for the moment, you can see their faces, too. [I realize that not everyone was appreciative of this impulsive, unannounced and--in all honesty--intrusive camera action. You'll see that too in the video. That's another reason why it may come down quickly. I believe they will like the photos, though. Their portraits are awesome.]
|Only the best for La Virgen de Gualalupe.|