With all the changes we've come to view as the "new normal" as practicing Catholics this summer, one may have slipped past us as we worry about Mass sign-ups, sanitizers, and facemasks. Many parishes are not being visited by a missionary.
Summer is the time when -- usually -- someone from the missions comes to each parish in the Archdiocese of Boston to share stories from the missions and ask for help to support their ministry. We hear stories of orphans being cared for, wells for clean water being installed, and rural health clinics being staffed, all in the name of spreading the Gospel of Jesus Christ.
Many of our mission visitors tell us that speaking at a Mission Appeal is a highlight of their year. They love meeting the people in the pews, sharing their lives' stories, and becoming regular prayer partners. Regular prayer is the life's blood of the missions!
Missionaries who come to the Archdiocese also stop by to visit us at the office of The Propagation of the Faith. Sometimes, we can send them away with donated rosaries, scapulars, priest's vestments, and other items for their mission outposts that have been donated to us.
We are always happy to become mission partners with them; many of the pictures and stories that we share with you, our donors, throughout the year, are the fruits of these mission visits.
Whether it is because the priest, sister, or lay person could not travel to the U.S. from the country where they are in ministry or because a missionary based in the U.S. was not able to enter Massachusetts, we are missing our missionaries!
Are you? If so, we know who your missionary was supposed to be this year! If you would like to reach out to them, in your charity, and make a gift to their ministry, we are happy to connect you. You can send a check to us at 66 Brooks Drive, Braintree, MA 02184. Put the name of your parish in the memo field. When we send you a thank you note, we'll let you know to whom your donation was sent. What a great gift to the missionary and yourself -- reaching out not because you know them, but because God does!
Also go to our website to give: www.propfaithboston.org. Click on Donate Now, then click on Propagation of the Faith, and finally, click on Mission Appeal. We'll be able to identify your parish and send the donation to the proper missionary.
Let's remember that the missions miss us now more than ever. Even if they can't visit us.
- Maureen Crowley Heil is Director of Programs and Development for the Pontifical Mission Societies, Boston.
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