Ireland

The confessions of St. Patrick

Patrick is one of the great missionaries of all times; the church he founded in Ireland itself became missionary and eager to share its faith throughout the whole world. Patrick was one of the first people to take a public stand against slavery.

How did he bring the Gospel to Ireland without the back-up of money or soldiers or a great culture? He used his intimate knowledge of the language and the Irish culture and his personal love for Christ. He was one of the first in ancient times to speak against slavery; this might be because he himself had been a slave in Ireland. His faith has been spread by the Irish people throughout the world and his feast day is celebrated everywhere with great panache and humor and affection. We share with you a few lines from his famous autobiography known as the Confession of St. Patrick written way back in the 5th century.

May it inspire you to read all of that work when you get on opportunity because it contains the clues to true missionary endeavor.

A Most Dangerous Woman

By Sr. Joan Chittister

Mary Jones was born in Cork, Ireland in 1830. She worked as a seamstress and schoolteacher, bore four children, emigrated to the United States when Victorianism was in its heyday and, at an early age, lost her husband and all her children to smallpox. She was one of thousands of strong and long suffering women who lived in poverty and survived it. In her long, black dress and broad-brimmed hat, she was the prototype of every turn-of-the-century grandmother in the United States. Except that she wasn’t. Underneath the patina of propriety and modest seemliness beat the heart of the lion of Judah who knew injustice and decried it, who knew the story of Exodus and believed it.

A Missionary Of The Old School

By Katie Donovan

Father Aedan McGrath runs the Incola missionary program in Manila. Here he talks to Katie Donovan about his life of adventure: among other things he protected 1,500 women from rape and slaughter by Japanese soldiers in 1939, and spent three years in solitary confinement in a Chinese jail.

China

“Mao gave us a big compliment, he said the Church was public enemy number one.” Father Aedan McGrath, originally a Dubliner from Drumcondra, recalls being put in prison because of his missionary work as a Columban Father in China: “I was arrested on the 7th of September 1951. I was put in a tiny cell, like a dog box. It was solidarity confinement for three years. There was no table, chair or bed. I could lie on the floor. It wasn’t like Mountjoy, nor one of these prisons that like first-class hotels. I was never allowed to close my eyes, talk or sneeze. All around me people were going mad. They did not have their faith.”

Pinoy's in the Emerald Isle

By Fr. Neil Collins

When I was in Seminary our professors taught us about using the bible, how to say Mass and baptize, and how to preach. But what about people who don’t go to Church? How do I preach the Good News of God’s love to them? They didn’t teach me that. But... Desi Mina, near three years old, showed me one way: She introduced me to her sandbox.

On the Mission in the Emerald Isle

By: Sr. Marcelle Bual, SPC

Sr. Marcelle Therese Bual was born in Bukidnon, Mindanao where her father farmed. She went to school in Xavier College Cagayan de Oro where she took Accounting, Later she joined the St. Paul Sisters and was sent on mission to Nazareth in the Holy Land. From there she transferred to their mission in Ireland.
It is three years now since I came to Dublin, Ireland in 1991. many things have happened since then joys and sorrows, loneliness and friendships, bitter cols weather and pleasant sunny days, and other experiences, positive and negative in nature... as is always so in any normal life.

...and Like Shining Stars in God’s Vast Firmament...

By: Sr. Carmela Santos, SPC

Sr. Carmela Santos from the Philippines works in London, England. Here she tells us her parish ministry and some of the people she has met and learned from.

International Parish
St. Joan of Arc is a thriving and active parish in Highbury, Borough of Islington in North London. It boasts of a happy community of some 5,000 parishioners; many of whom have immigrated from several parts of the world. Most of them come from common wealth countries, Ireland and Western Europe. There are a good number of Christian, Jewish and Muslim churches in Islington but the Roman Catholic Churches are apparently the best attended.

A Call to Love: From Bethlehem to Dublin

By: Sr. Marcelle Bual, SPC

Sister lived through the tensions of the INTIFADA- the uprising of the Palestinians in the Israeli occupied West Bank. She also witnessed the Gulf War and tells us how, hiding in a sealed room as the Iraqui scud missiles skimmed across the sky, her thoughts often strayed to a certain faraway place...

I am a Sister of St. Paul. My first foreign mission assignment was in Bethlehem University, first teaching the Palestinian students Business Administration and then, at the start of Intifada, working as the accountant of the university.

Hope Shines in Tanzania

By Sr. Rosalinda Gonzales, MMM

Sr. Rosalinda first met the Medical Missionaries of Mary when she worked as a lay doctor in Nigeria, West Africa. She is at present the Filipino member of this International missionary congregation founded in Drogheda, Ireland.

Study the Language
I was missioned to Tanzania in 1986. After finishing six months language course I was assigned to work in Makiungo Hospital.

A Child Is Born

By: Sr. Nora Wiseman 

March 14th last year was just like any other day in the midwifery department in our hospital here in Mokpo, Korea. There was the usual quota of expectant mothers waiting to have their babies. Among them was Chang Hae Sook, a thirty-one year old woman who was to have her fourth child. She was premature labour and was hemorrhaging .

At 8:30 pm the obstetrician deliver a baby boy weighing 750 grammes – less than two pound bag of sugar. The doctor nodded to the pediatrician present, telling him that there was no hope, and he threw the little morsel into the trash can

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