Church doors always open for immigrants
The local Hispanic community has nearly doubled in the past ten years. Some experts say many Hispanics moved to the coast after the major hurricanes in the 90’s, to find work in the construction business, but while America can be the land of opportunity, what makes the U.S. so unique are the different cultures that make it up.
One way for cultures to stay true to their traditions is through food, and for the Hispanic community in Wilmington, Mexican restaurants are proof their roots remain an integral part of their lives.
“We’re very proud of our heritage, very proud of our Latino roots, you know our beans and our rice,” said Helena Guzman of La Costa restaurant.
At La Costa, a traditional Mexican restaurant in Wilmington, even folks who aren’t from a Hispanic background like to try traditional Mexican cuisine.
“A Hispanic table that is in your restaurant, and they’ll order borregos or authentic plates, the waiter will come out with a tray, and they’ll see the cocktail de Cameron in a big goblet, and they’ll say ‘what is that’ and next time they will try it.”
Culture doesn’t have to be defined by food, but as immigrants find their niche in the States, they’re encouraged to find a way to hang onto old traditions while building new ones.
Tuesday, faith leaders from our area met to discuss what they can do within their congregations to welcome immigrants, and help them bridge the gap between two worlds.
“That you adopted all that is culture, and society, and what all that means. That can be a challenge for second generation children who are being encouraged to keep one culture but also embrace another,” said Alisa Guardiola, a Puerto Rican-American.
Today’s panel has representation from churches of all denominations in our area.
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