today was a gift for me.
yesterday and today, i realized that something i was missing during my time here in the philippines, is LEARNing more about mission. don’t get me wrong – i am learning SO much here on mission, in the sense that i am DOing mission, i am LIVing mission…but after moments of reflection yesterday and today with sr. t and one of our collaborators, i realized, i want to learn more of the theology behind mission, and read scripture more to get a better understanding of mission. what i know of mission is what i have read and experienced so far, but there’s so much more than that!
so today at mass i was sitting in the pew just reflecting on our morning’s reflections on the first two canticles of isaiah…and then i said, sister, is there a degree for missiology? i didn’t really expect her to say yes…but then she said, “yes. you can get your masters. i got my masters in missiology!” i almost fell over. amazing! THAT is why she is so wise – girlfriend has experience! haha i recall her saying that if she ever gets shipped back to brazil with no prior notice she will say, “can i go home first and at least get my books?” haha, that is why! and so, i am so grateful because i told her she will be my teacher, to teach me…because well, i think my mental nodes need some exercising, for sure. and in mission? exactly what i’m looking for. just perfect 🙂
reflecting on the first two canticles of isaiah was very refreshing, appropriate, and so on target to helping us get focused for the upcoming school year. we reflected on our call, on the challenges, and the method to our mission. it was all in all a beautiful morning, and we continued our day with meeting with our parish priest, that afternoon, to find out how we can be used more to serve the congregation…soooo looks like we will be teaching catechism to get more kids baptized, prepare them for holy communion, and then get them confirmed! 🙂 amazing. never thought i would ever be a full blown catechist, but turns out now i can say that my training to be a catechist was all in the philippines! so good.
the blessing of today is the continual affirmation that sr. and i have inserted ourselves into community and are part of a parish! it is SUCH a blessing to be able to go to the church at any time, and be greeted with hugs and kisses and warm greetings by the people in the office and in the church – usually followed by, “where have you been?” even though we we were just there a couple of days ago! haha! such wonderful, gracious people, and i am so thankful for our community there. i think another huge blessing is that the priest we are working with, is a CICM priest – he is a missionary…congregation of the immaculate heart of mary. it is just such a perfect combination because sr and i function under mother cabrini as missionaries, and he too, is very mission-minded, and his missionary spirit is alive and thriving. we witnessed him literally revive the church, both its outside and its inside with the congregation, and his impact is pretty amazing and inspiring within the neighboring communities.
so to be able to have this partnership with a priest that shares the same vision as our mission in being here? perfect. just perfect. he is also wonderful at community organizing and questioning the reasons for having this group or having that group – he is definitely one about quality, effectiveness, and sustainability. so great!
just in the past couple of days more than ever, i have felt the push ever so strongly to really work towards this mission that i have been called to. it’s not even about “fulfilling the need,” so much that it is more about following through and going for it with all the passion that i have in my heart for this cause. when things get tough, we are reminded to go back to the root of our calling, as mentioned in the first canticle of isaiah – that we have been called to every nation…that is NOT to be taken lightly! what a gift that is! and it’s really true – when you believe in a cause 100% and then some…you work. you tire, but you work. and that is what we have really been doing for this past week. when discouragement sets in, when giving up becomes an option, we are reminded – have hope and do not lose courage, for we are not alone in this!
and what beautiful consolation that is. things are much more easier when we don’t have to do things alone. right? right.