US Border patrol

When Faith Reaches the Border

The young girl in the photo looks like my Helen

READ MORE

Helen Fell on Her Head and I Prayed to Jesus, Sort of

Helen Fell on Her Head and I Prayed to Jesus, Sort of

READ MORE
Anna's daughters together

What’s in a Name

The second time around is totally different…from tacos to the name

READ MORE

How to Rebuild on Yom Kippur

A few weeks ago my family had a hard day. It seemed that both my Jewish and my husband’s Mexican/Catholic faith were being tested. A 7.1 earthquake shook Mexico. The epicenter of the quake was in Puebla where my husband, Adrian, is from and where his immediate family still lives. We were at the laundromat […]

READ MORE

Bringing Some Dharma to My Jewish-Catholic Household

Insomnia. It’s awful and I’ve never had it before. Until now. Part of this has to do with me getting pregnant again shortly after a miscarriage. Another part has to do with the anxiety, fear, loneliness, happiness, joy and gratitude I feel approaching motherhood for the second time. The second time is different, of course. […]

READ MORE

Loss and Gain

The doctor calls Adrian and me saying, “Congratulations! You’re pregnant!” Adrian hugs me and we lift Helen up and kiss her little 16-month-old cheeks. “Helen! Helen!” we cry, “Helen you are going to have a little brother or sister!” Helen pushes our faces away not exactly understanding and gallops into the bedroom in search of […]

READ MORE

Two Faiths and Powerful Women

My daughter, Helen Rose Castaneda, wakes up one day at 10-and-a-half months old, pulls herself up in her crib and says “hola!” at the top of her lungs. “Hola, hola, hola!” This makes sense because Adrian and I speak to Helen mainly in Spanish at home. She says “hola” for an entire day and then […]

READ MORE

My Favorite Interfaith Children’s Book

When I was a child there were two books I wanted desperately to hear before bedtime. The first was Goodnight Fred. This was a favorite because the grandmother in the book comes out of the telephone to visit Fred and Arthur, her grandsons. I, too, thought my grandmother lived in the telephone and could come […]

READ MORE

Our Jewish Catholic Mexican American Newborn

I grew up in an Orthodox Jewish neighborhood in Brooklyn, NY. My parents were liberals who met in the theatre where they had been professional actors. My father was a Brooklyn boy, born and raised in Crown Heights. My mother, a Baltimore native who said she always wanted to marry a Brooklyn boy, and so […]

READ MORE