This weekend Don and I took our next big step in preparing for our mission to southeastern Missouri this coming winter/spring 2014, Saturday and Sunday we spoke at all of the English and Spanish Masses telling our community of Catholic brethren at St. Anthony's of our upcoming mission; we introduced them to the small community of Glenmary nuns, priests and brothers who serve Appalachia and the South and their mission to serve the poorest of the poor in areas where there is often no Catholic presence at all.
We spoke of Mother's House in Caruthersville, MO and Sr. Darlene's mission to serve the many impoverished single moms of the area. We asked, not for money but, for donations of maternity clothes, baby clothes and baby food and baby toys. In a community where children wear uniforms to public schools, we asked for navy and khaki pants and red, blue and white polo shirts that would fit teenage pregnant girls.
After seven Masses, I found myself reflecting on what unites us. We of St. Anthony's are a community of people where some have great wealth, many are ordinary middle class, and more than a few are the working poor and not a few who are undocumented and living in the shadows. We are Anglos, Latinos, and Filipinos. But at the end of the Masses, at the end of our appeal, I felt so united with all of them. The response was so overwhelming and positive. People understand need no matter their "station" in life. Giving is something we can all do. There is always someone who has less than we ourselves have and giving fills the need to reach out and help another even if we have a hard time helping ourselves.
Also linked with Mornings With Mary.