We are proud to bring you the first episode of Among The People, with an impactful interview with Maryknoll Brother John Beeching.
In this episode, Brother John shares:
• His time with Mother Teresa, a story we’re sure you’ve never heard.
• His war experiences in Beirut and Yemen.
• Managing the trauma of war.
• His selfless work with the Mon refugees of Myanmar and Thailand.
• Christian love and Buddhist compassion.
About Brother John:
Much of Brother Beeching’s work in Thailand has involved accompanying Mon refugees and monks, who have taken shelter at Wat Prok, a Buddhist temple in Bangkok.
The Mon are indigenous Burmese people, who have been brutalized by the ruling military regime of Burma (Myanmar, as the military government now refers to the country).
Brother Beeching joins the Mon and other Burmese ethnic groups in demonstrating in front of the Myanmar embassy in Bangkok, helps them secure visas and passports, and assists them in getting supplies to some of the refugee camps along the Burmese/Thai border.
He writes: “Despite differences in belief, these fellow refugees and I have grown through the experience of service as a shared sense of community. Together we break the bread of compassion. Together we sit in silence trying to be present to the gift of the moment, and are drawn ever deeper into the ineffable mystery of God.”
Prior to Bangkok, Brother John served first in Chile and then in the Middle East, working in Egypt, Yemen and Lebanon. In war-ravaged Beirut he experienced numerous narrow escapes with mortar attacks and terrorist bombings. It was also a time when he became involved in interfaith dialogue, an interest that has grown within the old walls of Wat Prok, Thailand.
For him, Christian love and Buddhist compassion comprise the same call to action. “Buddhists say you are a brother to the mosquito you slapped on your wrist. The tree, the water-it’s all part of what is happening in you. It’s a brotherhood that embraces all life.”