Misyon Online - March-April 2016

‘He is risen, as he said, Alleluia’

Natanuku catechist with grandchild in front of collapsed bure

‘We have to care in a special way for children and for grandparents. Children and young people are the future; they are our strength; they are what keep us moving forward. They are the ones in whom we put our hope. Grandparents are a family’s memory. They are the ones who gave us the faith, they passed the faith on to us.’

A Killer Cyclone

by Fr Frank Hoare

A wrecked house in Natanuku

Columban Fr Frank Hoare, based in Fiji, first went there in 1973. He is from Ireland.

Severe Tropical Cyclone Winston

In mid-February this year Tropical Cyclone Winston passed fairly close to Fiji on an eastward path towards Tonga. It missed the large islands but did damage to some of the smaller Lau islands. It damaged one of the big islands in the Tonga group and then made a sharp U turn picking up force from the heat of the ocean below as it reversed its path towards Fiji. The government issued warnings to everyone to prepare for the cyclone by nailing wooden shields over windows, by tying down roofs with wire, by storing up food and water and candles and by buying batteries for radios and flashlights. Evacuation centers in schools and halls were prepared.

A Glimpse of Love for the Unseen

By Jao Resari

Jhoanna Resari at an exhibition of her art work

Jhoanna ‘Jao’ Resari is a Columban Lay Missionary from Rizal who is now based in Hong Kong as a member of the Lay Missionary Central Leaderships Team. She worked in Taiwan from 2005 until 2014 and has featured on MISYONonline.com a number of times. You may read more about her in our January-February 2016 issue here.

From 29 September to 19 October 2014 the Agape Center for HIV and AIDS Education and Outreach Ministry of the Hsinchu Diocese and Harmony Home Foundation Taiwan, a non-profit organization sheltering people living with HIV and AIDS in Taiwan and China, collaborated in holding a charity art exhibition entitled: ‘A Glimpse of Love for the Unseen’, showing 22 artworks which included oils, charcoals and photographs, to raise awareness on HIV and AIDS.  The exhibition was held in two venues, the first in Hsinchu City and the second in Taipei City. These events were good opportunities for people from different communities to understand the realities of HIV and AIDS and to be in solidarity with people living with HIV and AIDS.

A Present-day Good Samaritan

by Fr Barry Cairns

The Good Samaritan (after Delacroix), Van Gogh
May 1890, Saint-Rémy.

Rijksmuseum Kröller-Müller, Otterlo, Netherlands [Web Gallery of Art]

One of my recent side jobs was to teach for a term as a substitute lecturer at a junior college in Yokohama. There were 30 students in the class. Many were destined to be social workers in Christian-run homes for children with disabilities, retirement homes and hospices. Not one of the students was a Christian. For this reason, the dean of the College asked me to give a ten-week course entitled simply, ‘Christianity.’ At my request each student was to have a copy of the New Testament and a copy of Shūsaku Endō‘s Life of Jesus. (Both in Japanese as were the lectures.)

The Cricket in the Box

By Fr Warren Kinne

The author is an Australian Columban who worked in Mindanao in the 1970s. He is now based in Shanghai. He has some Chinese ancestry and during his years in China has come to know relatives there. He wrote this article shortly after the Chinese/Lunar New Year celebration on 8 February 2016.

Chinese Cricket Boxes  

There is a Chinese saying: ‘Huo dao lao, xue dao lao’ which loosely translated is ‘You are never too old to learn’.

A couple of nights ago a dentist friend here in China was driving me home on a cold winter’s night when I heard a chirping noise inside the car. It sounded like crickets but I presumed it was an electronic beep somewhere from the dashboard. At the intersection red light, Doctor Dong reached into his pocket and pulled out a small box, opened it, and there were two chirping crickets in two separate wee compartments.

In the footsteps of Columban Missionaries in China

Bishop Edward J. Galvin
19 September 1952 at convent of the Columban Sisters, Hong Kong

Bishop Galvin, Co-founder of the Columbans and first Bishop of Hanyang had just been expelled from the People’s Republic of China

This article first appeared in Sunday Examiner, the English-language weekly of the Diocese of Hong Kong edited by Australian Columban Fr James Mulroney.

HONG KONG (SE): In the manner in which St Columban proclaimed himself an exile for Christ when he left his native Ireland for Europe over 1,400 years ago, a group of Chinese priests, sisters and lay people from Wuhan carried a banner reading ‘Exiles for Christ’ as they traveled in pilgrimage along the Han River from Hanyang between 11 and 14 November 2015 in the footsteps of the Columban missionaries of the 1920s.

To Search is to find

Father, how true is it that the person who committed suicide cannot be brought to the church for a funeral Mass?

The Catechism of the Catholic Church deals with suicide in numbers 2280 to 2283. The second part of 2282 reads: Grave psychological disturbances, anguish, or grave fear of hardship, suffering, or torture can diminish the responsibility of the one committing suicide. No 2283 states: We should not despair of the eternal salvation of persons who have taken their own lives. By ways known to him alone, God can provide the opportunity for salutary repentance. The Church prays for persons who have taken their own lives.

Humanly speaking, we could understand and interpret the Sermon on the Mount in a thousand different ways. Jesus knows only one possibility: simple surrender and obedience, not interpreting it or applying it, but doing and obeying it. That is the only way to hear his word. He does not mean that it is to be discussed as an ideal; he really means us to get on with it.

– Dietrich Bonhoeffer (4 February 1909 – executed 9 April 1945), The Cost of Discipleship

By Ramil Caporas

The author has been a member of the Philippine Army for 18 years now. He is married with four children. The article is based on an interview made in Hiligaynon through Facebook with Assistant Editor Anne Gubuan.

I was recently tasked to help in the 51st International Eucharistic Congress (IEC) held last 20-31 January in Cebu, Philippines.  IEC is basically a gathering of Catholics from around the world but doesn’t limit participation to Catholics only. Though I am a Baptist I didn’t feel hampered in any way in the name of religion. I was privileged to be there and to experience the event.  It made me understand more that faith doesn’t depend on labels and classifications; it is all about what our hearts contain.