Your Gifts are a Living Posada

Providing our Children Room at the Inn

A “posada” is a traditional procession during the nine days before Christmas in Latin America. (The COAR children staged it in November when we visited.) A couple, playing Mary and Joseph, knock on doors asking for a room. The “innkeepers” behind the room refuse them entry. (Sometimes the “doors” are stations in a school gym room, or some creative version of a town.) The procession starts with Mary and Joseph singing their request for a room and the innkeepers singing their refusal. Until finally one innkeeper agrees.
COAR’s posada last month begins on our gathering space stage. The children in the main space sing the innkeeper's refusal as they progress around the room.
Here are the verses of this traditional song along side photos of the COAR children safe and sheltered.
The COAR children, like all vulnerable children and youth, seek shelter and safety. You are all the real, tangible innkeepers that provide them this safety. What a great image for this Christmas season.
Pilgrims (outside)
In the name of Heaven
I ask you for lodging
My beloved wife
Can no longer walk.
Innkeepers (inside)
This isn’t an inn
Move along
I can’t open for you
What if you’re a rogue?
Pilgrims (outside)
Don’t be inhuman
Show us charity
Our God in Heaven
Will repay you.
Innkeepers (inside)
Get moving
Don’t bother us
If I get angry
I’ll come out and beat you.
Pilgrims (outside)
We’re so tired
We’ve come from Nazareth
I’m a carpenter
And my name is Joseph.
Innkeepers (inside)
I don’t care what you’re called
Let me sleep
I’ve already told you
We won’t open up
Two houses of girls clown for the camera. Among them are three new girls, rescued from terrible abuse.
Pilgrims (outside)
I’m only asking for lodging
My esteemed innkeeper,
it’s just that she’s with child,
The Queen of Heaven.
Innkeepers (inside)
Well if it’s a queen
Asking to come in,
How is it that she’s
so alone and at night?
Pilgrims (outside)
My wife is Mary,
Queen of Heaven,
And mother she’s to be,
Of the Word Incarnate.
Innkeepers (inside)
You’re Joseph
And your wife is Mary,
Come in, pilgrims
I didn’t know you.
Pilgrims (outside)
God repay you, good sirs
For your charity
And Heaven fill you
With joy.
The children hold the prayer cards with intentions from the St. Romero Prayer Service held last March 24th. In front with the candles are pictures of the six Jesuits, their housekeeper and her daughter, remembered at the end of the posada, held early this year, on November 17th, a day after the anniversary of that massacre.
Blessed is the house
That shelters today
The most pure Virgin,
Beautiful Mary.

Come in, Holy Pilgrims,
Take this little corner,
Although the shelter is mean,
I give it to you from my heart.