Join us Thursday, June 15 from 7-8:30pm Eastern for a Watering Hole conversation with Father Gregory Boyle (“G” as he is affectionately called), director and founder of Homeboy Industries and members of his staff (many of whom are former gang members), who will speak to decades of experience working together in Boyle Heights, one of the poorest communities with the largest concentration of gangs in Los Angeles.
Watering Hole participants will ask questions and hear stories of many of the young people Father Boyle and his staff have helped over the years. Many of these individuals have been traumatized by child abuse or neglect, or have been witnesses or subjected to domestic violence, and carry the scars of all this far into adulthood. Their stories illuminate how these youth seek alternative “families” in order to escape the lack of nurturing at home, and how by offering hope and unconditional love, these young people become whole by discovering and claiming their self-worth, belovedness, and sense of kinship, through counseling, job training, and employment and grow into confident, productive adults and citizens.
Watering Holes are online opportunities to listen, learn, and dialogue with wise teachers that can help us along our spiritual journeys. Please share this invite with your family and friends. All genders are welcome!
We use a gift economy model. The event fee is $30 but you are invited to pay what you can afford (we request a minimum of $5). If you are able and so-inclined, we also welcome additional contributions to support future Watering Holes and the ongoing work of Illuman.
*Note: Live translated captions are available in a variety of languages, including Spanish, Portugese, German, Dutch French, Italian, Ukrainian, Russian, Chinese, Korean, and Japanese.
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A native Angeleno and Jesuit priest, from 1986 to 1992 Father Gregory Boyle served as pastor of Dolores Mission Church in Boyle Heights, then the poorest Catholic parish in Los Angeles that also had the highest concentration of gang activity in the city.
Father Boyle witnessed the devastating impact of gang violence on his community during the so-called “decade of death” that began in the late 1980s and peaked at 1,000 gang-related killings in 1992. In the face of law enforcement tactics and criminal justice policies of suppression and mass incarceration as the means to end gang violence, he and parish and community members adopted what was a radical approach at the time: treat gang members as human beings.
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