May-June 1996

In the Heart of Rome

By Sr. M. Speranza Alejandro, PDDM

The extraordinary apostolate of the Pious Disciples dramatizes the call of the Eucharist: to give our bodies for the life of the world. Sr. Speranza shares her vision with us.

Two years ago I started my mission in the Vatican City, the heart of Rome. As a member of the Pious Disciples of the Divine Master involved in the Eucharistic Priestly-Liturgical apostolate, I join my sisters in taking turns of prayer before our Eucharistic Lord in the Blessed Sacrament Chapel, inside the Basilica of St. Peter. Every morning after the first mass celebrated in this chapel, there is a solemn exposition of the Blessed Sacrament. We are eighteen international sisters and we go in pairs (like the disciples sent by the Lord for the mission) every one and a half hour presenting humanity before the Blessed Sacrament. As we pray we present all the needs of humankind to the Lord and the needs for justice of all categories of people.

A Kind of Utopia

By Sr. Ana Maria, RA

First I’d like to bring you to Denmark, it is a small country, one of the smallest in the world but one of the loveliest. It only has a land area of 18,000 square miles and one can easily travel through it but it has 6 million inhabitants, 6,000 of whom are Filipinos!

All my Yesterdays

By Sr. Walfridis, SSpS

Sr. Walfridis, SSpS has been a missionary in Papua New Guinea for nearly half a century. She is now long past the retiring age but still serves joyfully in the vocation she choose so many years ago. It is very clear that Our Lord’s promise has been fulfilled in her. “Live on in my love... that my joy may be complete.”(John 9 - 11)

I am now a retiree here in our retiree here in our Retirement House. I am cooped up and no longer in circulation especially now that I am half blind due to glaucoma. Two years ago I used to drive to Kefamo every Saturday for my Legion of Mary meetings, but now I cannot drive anymore. I also used to have my little garden as my OT (Occupational Therapy) where I could putter around whenever I liked and plant whatever I liked, but now I have to let it go for I can no longer distinguish between plants and weeds. Since I can no longer read nor sing, the Lord has been good to give me another OT – playing the organ by ear for I cannot see the notes anymore and improvise the accompaniment, I play from 4-5 in the afternoon everyday and from 5-6 we retirees have adoration before the Blessed Sacrament.

By Fr Joseph Panabang SVD

Proud Pajamas

At Kwabea Village, we were just starting the Mass when the Church president came in looking proud in his new stripped pajamas. For him, there is no difference between pajamas and ordinary pants. And, why should there be? Afterall, pajamas have always been daytime wear to both women and men in the Middle East. It was the westerners who adapted it for night wear. Maybe they smile when we go to bed in daytime clothes.

I Love Rubber Bands

By Bo Sanchez

Let me tell you a crazy story I heard recently. There’s this husband who out of sheer love for his wife decided to prove it to her. So he swam the widest oceans, crossed the deepest rivers and climbed the highest mountains to show his deep devotion to her. But, in the end, she divorced him. Why? Because he was never home. (Get it?)

The Tears of Lebanon

By Sr. Amelia Torres, DC

In 1965 I wrote a letter to our Superior General in France offering for the missions. I was only 6 months old in the Seminary of the Daughters of Charity. Time did fly fast, years came and went and I was assigned to different apostolates: schools, hospitals, parishes and development centers. Nobody took notice of my ardent desire. Superiors ignored my letters. They told me I was not physically strong to survive the rigors of mission life; that I was much more needed in my own country ... and so obediently I went on with the tasks assigned to me. Nevertheless, from time to time,  I expressed my desire.

Apostles to a Martyred Land

By Janice McLaughlin, MM

Three Maryknoll Sisters arrived in Albania to begin the congregation’s first mission outreach to Eastern Europe. Sisters Winifred O’Donnell, Vivian Vortuba and Lourdes Fernandez are following the footsteps of St. Paul, the first apostle to Illyricum, as Albania was known in early days of the Church.
(Romans 15:19).

The poorest country in Europe, Albania, suffered immense deprivation under one of the world’s harshest communist regimes. All religions were banned under President Enver Hoxha, who declared Albania the world’s first officially atheist state. All but 29 of the country’s 195 Catholics priests were executed or died in prison; church buildings were turned into theaters and sports places; clergy and religious could not be trained or function in any public way.