Misyon Online - November-December 2010


At 3'40" into the video our editor uses the expression 'non-active violence' when he means 'active non-violence'.

‘Everyday God Greets Me Through the People’

‘Cada Dia Dios Me Saluda Atraves de su Pueblo’

From Peru to the Philippines

By Antonio Jesús Salas Villagómez
(Translated from the Spanish by Fr Rolly Aniscal)

So opens El Candombé para José by Roberto Ternán sung by the Chilean group Illapu. Listening to it, I can’t help but think of the many forgotten people around me, many living on the side of the road like the blind man of Jericho. Listening, I hear the sound of the charango and guitar, of the bamboo flute and harmonica and of other instruments. I can’t help but think of the many ‘Josés’, friends who are marginalized, discriminated against and exploited by a system that does not favor the poor or, shall we say, does not favor those already impoverished.

In the midst of the music and dance, I reflect that I am meeting face to face a God who is a friend, a brother, a companion on the journey and in adventures! This is the God who is present to me day by day here in the Philippines.

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St Columban my Brother

Reflections of a pilgrim following in St Columban’s footsteps.

By Fr Ray Scanlon

Until I did the pilgrimage I did not know much about St Columban. To me he was a mythical figure of ages long ago, one who was not so human and who had extraordinary powers, superhuman ideals and expectations.

As we traveled in St Columban’s footsteps we heard a number of accounts about his life. I began to understand and admire him. He became alive and real rather than a distant historical figure.

At the beginning of the pilgrimage our leader, Fr Derry Healy, said, ‘We are a group of lay people, sisters and priests hoping to be touched by the people, places and cultures where St Columban traveled, setting up schools and monastic communities at the end of the sixth and the beginning of the seventh centuries’.

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A Call

By Sr Rhea Lei Y. Tolibas TC

The stars were marching in a stately manner in the midnight clear sky as I looked beyond the darkness of the world. This was during my teenage years as I came to ask myself what I would be when I grew up. I dreamed of so many ideals and goals, but the questions still remained: ‘What is my life for? Why do I exist? What is my mission in this world? Why did God create me? What is His will for my life?’

Have you ever asked yourself why you exist? What the truest meaning of your life is? Why God created you as you journey towards the life not yet realized? Emptiness remains, but with the echo of a call that’s hiding within. Behind your existence lies the meaning of your life.

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Woman, Behold Your Son

By Maria Theresa C. Gayondato

‘Woman, behold your son.’ These were the words spoken by Father Agostino Awoyemi when he introduced to me to my future godson, Jacques Hippolyte Temdemnou Yetgang, a native of Cameroon and an engineering student in Perugia, Italy. It all started that day, 6 January 2009, the feast of the Epiphany. The French- and English-speaking Sunday Mass communities in Perugia were gathered for the despedida party of Father Agostino who was returning to Nigeria, his native country. A few days before his departure Father Agostino mentioned that he he had been following up a young man for baptism for some time already and that he thought of entrusting him to me before going home.

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My First Christmas in Jamaica

By Fr Vic Gaboury

This article first appeared in Misyon in 1988. At that time the Columbans had a mission in the Diocese of Montego Bay, Jamaica.

It looked as though it was to be a busy time both before and during my first Christmas in Jamaica. I didn’t know the local customs and the expectations of the people. The parishioners of Seaford Town where I lived had asked for Midnight Mass. On Christmas Day there would be Masses in two mission stations at opposite ends of the parish.

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