This column was the featured column on UPI’s Religion and Spirituality Forum on December 17, 2007.
About six weeks ago, I became the foster parent of a sixteen year old refugee from Burma. She’s a delightful kid. She smiles a lot and she’s helpful around the house. She likes my children and they like her.
But she doesn’t speak English, in fact, she doesn’t even speak Burmese. She speaks an obscure dialect of a language that almost no one outside of northwest Burma understands. Her hometown has no automobiles, no running water, no electricity, and very little contact with the outside world. I suspect that she can communicate fluently only with people from her town, and as far as I can tell, the only other person from her town in the United States lives in Michigan. Continue reading