The LRWC Spouse Group began many years ago as an English class for the spouses of international students at McCormick and the Lutheran School of Theology in Chicago. We meet each Wednesday and two members bring food to share. Four of our former members are now McCormick students and one returned with her family to Japan, but each year lovely people appear to bless the group. Our members include community organizers, teachers, a professor of social work on sabbatical, administrators, social workers, graphic designers, writers, a composer and professional organist, and even a lawyer.
Some group members speak English very well (even though they don’t think so), while others struggle so hard to understand and to be understood. All our members get homesick for their familiar places and spaces; few people understand just how difficult it is to live in this country as an international students’ spouse.
We go on field trips, some as close as the park by the DuSable Museum. One afternoon we took a spontaneous trip to Chinatown. In less than half an hour we were gathered around a table in a little bakery sipping tea and eating cakes. We’ve visited the Jane Addams Hull House, the National Museum of Mexican Art in the Pilsen neighborhood and spent a day at Indiana Dunes State Park, eating a picnic and watching the kids play in Lake Michigan.
Our group prepares and serves a meal on the first Tuesday of every month for the Food for Life Program at First Presbyterian Church. It’s a lovely and noisy time with lots of little children running around the kitchen and hall, babies in strollers, people chopping and stirring and opening cans and tasting sauces and drinking coffee and talking about all kinds of things and washing dishes. At 12:30 p.m. we sit down to eat with the church staff and at 1:00 p.m. we begin serve our neighbors. This year we will also volunteer two nights a month at Good News Community Kitchen, now called “A Just Harvest.” Please join us.
For more information about the Spouse Group, please contact Rob Worley at firstname.lastname@example.org.