Father Bob McCahill, M.M. recently sent several stories from Bangladesh, where the Goshen, Indiana, native serves in mission. Father McCahill is known as the “Bicycle Disciple,” since he travels the countryside on his bike to serve the sick and the poor.
Maryknoll missioners often explain that their work in mission is rewarded many times over with the hospitality, warmth, love and prayers that they receive from the people they serve. One example of this resulted in a gift of a lifetime.
Bradley Hilltopics magazine is published quarterly for alumni, faculty, staff, parents of students, and friends of Bradley University. Founded by Lydia Moss Bradley in 1897, Bradley University is a private, independent university located in Peoria, Illinois. Father Bill Donnelly, a graduate of the class of 1955, used his Bradley degree in art to serve his Church in Guatemala, to provide art for Maryknoll filmstrips, and to illustrate novelettes based on the lives of prominent Catholics.
This is a story about the presence of God made so real for me, thousands of other New Yorkers, and for most of the known world on one very memorable day.
Each morning at 7, the Rev. John Hudert can be found on a fertile patch of land at Maryknoll, tending to the rows of cabbage, squash, tomatoes and lettuce that will eventually make their way onto the plates of Westchester’s needy.
A century ago, an attentive subscriber to the Catholic mission magazine The Field Afar might have noticed the following announcement in its pages: “Youths or young men who feel a strong desire to toil for the souls of heathen people and who are willing to go afar with no hope of earthly recompense and with no guarantee of a return to their native land are encouraged to write, making their letter personal, to the Editor of Field Afar.”
God of all compassion,
Comfort your sons and daughters
Who live with HIV.
Spread over us all your quilt of Mercy,
Love and Peace.
Open our eyes to your presence
Reflected in their faces.
Open our ears to your truth
Echoing in their hearts.
Give us the strength
To weep with the grieving,
To walk with the lonely,
To stand with the depressed.
May our love mirror your love
For those who live in fear,
Who live under stress and
Who suffer rejection.
Mothering, fathering God
Grant rest to those who have died
And hope to all who live with HIV.
God of life, help us to find the cure now
And help us to build a world in which
No one dies alone and where
Everyone lives accepted
Wanted and loved.