Have your prayer intentions remembered in our daily masses and communal prayers.

Jordan Denari Duffner, Author of Islamophobia

Jordan Denari Duffner, Author of Islamophobia

Arson and vandalism at houses of worship. Bullying at schools and harassment at the grocery store. Political scapegoating and institutionalized discrimination. Muslims in the United States–and beyond–have faced Islamophobia in a range of forms. This ground-breaking book argues that Christians should be at the forefront of efforts to end the prejudice, discrimination, and violence, that Muslims face.

Writing for Christians of all denominations, Jordan Denari Duffner offers an introduction to Islamophobia, discusses the unfortunate ways that Christians have contributed to it, and offers practical steps for standing in solidarity with Muslims. Viewing Islamophobia as both a social justice and a religious freedom issue, Duffner makes the case that Christian faith calls us to combat religious discrimination even when it is not directed toward our own faith community. She weaves together insights from Catholic social teaching, examples from Protestant leaders, and expertise from Muslim scholars and activists, resulting in a compelling book that will be of interest to academic and lay audiences alike.

Islamophobia: What Christians Should Know (and Do) about Anti-Muslim Discrimination

Jordan Denari Duffner is a doctoral student in theology and religious studies at Georgetown University and an associate and former research fellow at the Bridge Initiative, a research project of Georgetown University’s Center for Muslim-Christian Understanding. A 2013 Fulbright scholar, she is author of Finding Jesus among Muslims: How Loving Islam Makes Me a Better Catholic (Liturgical Press) and many articles in print and online media, including The Washington PostAmerica, and Commonweal.

Solemnity of the Most Holy Trinity, Journey of Faith

Solemnity of the Most Holy Trinity, Journey of Faith

“And behold I am with you always, until the end of the age.”

Matthew 28:20

Jesus had one mission in mind for his apostles—and for us:  Transform the world as you have been transformed.

This is what we celebrate today on the Solemnity of the Most Holy Trinity:  our calling to go out into the world in the name of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit.  Just as the Father sent his Son to redeem the world, Jesus sent the Spirit to fortify us in proclaiming the Good News of salvation.  With the gift of the Spirit—our personal Pentecost—we have all the tools we need to witness Christ’s compassion and God’s eternal love.

At the same time, Jesus understood that the apostles would have moments of doubt.  That’s why he reassured them—and now us—with words of comfort.  He said he will be in our presence always, an endless reservoir of strength and good will.

Matthew’s gospel reminds us that living our faith happens in relationships…  how well we care for one another… how well we live our baptismal call to serve… and how well we teach others by modeling the Gospel.  Acts of compassion beget more acts of compassion.  That is the nature of the divine impulse:  to transform the world by reaching out, over and again, through prayer and good works.  Being called… being sent… gifting the Spirit to everyone we know.  This is the “trinity of our faith” that we can have only in community with God and one another.  We live our lives in relationships, and we live the most rewarding ones in the presence of God.

Friend, as you celebrate today’s feast day and the infinite gift of the Holy Trinity, let your love spill over the way God’s gifts do—reshaping the world and transforming the soul within you.

       

Prayer for Trinity Sunday

All praise, honor and glory to You, Lord God,

most blessed and Holy Trinity

source of life, love, wisdom and truth

Creator, Sanctifier and Sustainer

of all that is, was, or ever will be.

You created humans in Your divine image

and breathed into us Your life-giving Spirit

and in the fullness of time You became one

with us in our humanity that we might

become one with You in Your divinity.

O Trinity of holy relationships help us empty

ourselves in loving service to one another

and to the world. Be our dynamic force of faith

to overcome mountains of hope to conquer

obstacles and of love to transform our world

into a living tabernacle of Your abiding presence.

Amen.

Prayer by Father Joe Veneroso, M.M.

I hope today’s reflection has special meaning for you.  This is Father Ray Finch, sending you a blessing for the week, and an invitation to listen in again next Sunday.   

Summer Time And The Living is Easy!

New moon emerges over Nairobi, Kenya

Welcome to the Summer 2021 Vocations Newsletter!  I hope that the living is indeed easy for you during this time of the year, especially after a long year of fighting the Covid-19 pandemic.  You have been in contact with Maryknoll and so are contemplating a missionary vocation as priest or Brother.  You come to us from the motive of faith and hope in the life-giving message of Jesus.

I once heard the word vocation defined as the place God calls us to where our deep gladness and the world’s deep hunger meet.  I hope you recognize how much you and so many others like you are needed today.  The Gospel message of God’s love, mercy and compassion for all people is so important.  It needs to be preached not only in words but in the living out of our daily lives.  You are a messenger wherever you go and in whatever you do.  But, you still need to take steps in the direction that will fulfill the deep gladness you wish in life.  To move beyond your own personal concerns by seeking to meet the needs of others as a missionary priest or Brother may be the vocation that God has chosen for you – the path that brings joy, gladness, and contentment to your life.

As always we look forward to hearing from you at (vocation@maryknoll.org): Fr. Rodrigo Ulloa-Chavarry, Fr. Mike Snyder, Fr. Joe Donovan and Mr. Greg Darr.

Seminarians and Brother Candidates Renew Their Temporary Oath

The Permanent Oath is the lifetime commitment members make to Maryknoll at the time of ordination as priests or completion of training as Brothers.  During the initial formation years we make yearly Temporary Oaths.  This Oath is a public sign of our commitment to the mission work of Christ as entrusted to Maryknoll.  It is a commitment to each other that binds us together in a mutual response to God’s Mission.  By this oath we commit ourselves to Jesus Christ, to the Catholic Church and to its duty to be messengers of God’s love, compassion and mercy throughout the world. Our seminarians and Brother candidates begin taking a temporary oath just prior to their participation in the Overseas Training Program (a 2 year internship program).  It is renewed each year afterward until ordination as priests and lifetime commitment as Brothers when each makes his Permanent Oath as a lifetime member of Maryknoll.  We have eighteen candidates in our program and this year nine have taken their temporary oath with one, Br. Candidate Jonathan Jose, taking it for the first time.  Congratulations to all!

Two Missioners Are Off to New Assignments

Newly ordained Fr. Greg McPhee and seasoned missioner Br. Joe Bruener have recently traveled to Cochabamba, Bolivia.  First they will study Spanish and later begin their missionary service.  Fr. Greg came to us with a background in law as a criminal defense attorney in Syracuse, New York.  As a seminarian he was sent to Tanzania, East Africa for two years on our Overseas Training Program.  Br. Joe has spent many years serving in Asia (Taiwan, mainland China and Hong Kong).  He has also served as vocation minister and with the initial formation team here in the U.S.  He brings the richness of these experiences to his new assignment in Latin America.

Fr. Greg contemplates the Mission Cross given at ordination

Fr. Rodrigo (center) bids farewell to Fr. Greg & Br. Joe as they leave the Maryknoll Center for Bolivia

Virtual Come & See Events

While we always enjoy in person vocation events, the pandemic has stimulated us to utilize social platforms to engage with young men interested in a missionary vocation.  One of these has been Saturday evening Come & See events.  They last just two hours and during this time we cover various subjects, introduce participants to Maryknoll priests, Brothers and candidates in training and hear some of their stories.

For example on May 22nd we covered a lot of ground in two hours from learning a little of ourselves including the music that has given us grace during the pandemic; how to prepare and build your vocation raft (using Tom Hanks’ movie: Castaway); visiting the Maryknoll Center via a virtual tour; reflection on a mission story by vocation minister Greg Darr; discussion on the particular Gospel that is lived in one’s home town; what our nation went through when George Floyd died and the meaning of the poetic words of Amanda Gorman. Preparation matters when building your vocation raft. Stay tuned for more information about the next come and see event.

Participants at our May 22nd Event

A Message From Pope Francis

The Gospel offers us the chance to live life on a higher plane, but with no less intensity:

“Life grows by being given away, and it weak­ens in isolation and comfort. Indeed, those who enjoy life most are those who leave security on the shore and become excited by the mission of communicating life to others”.  When the Church summons Christians to take up the task of evangelization, she is simply pointing to the source of authentic personal fulfilment. For “here we discover a profound law of reality: that life is attained and matures in the measure that it is offered up in order to give life to others. This is certainly what mission means”.  Consequently, an evangelizer must never look like someone who has just come back from a funeral! Let us recov­er and deepen our enthusiasm, that “delightful and comforting joy of evangelizing, even when it is in tears that we must sow… And may the world of our time, which is searching, sometimes with anguish, sometimes with hope, be enabled to receive the good news not from evangelizers who are dejected, discouraged, impatient or anx­ious, but from ministers of the Gospel whose lives glow with fervor, who have first received the joy of Christ”.

– Pope Francis (The Joy of the Gospel #10 (2013)

Missioners’ Contributions

We asked some Maryknoll Missioners this question: What made you consider the missionary Priesthood or Brotherhood?  Here are some of the answers:

Adventure!  I wanted to serve the poorest of the poor like Christ through healing, preaching, and teaching.  I love to travel and experience new cultures. I wanted to experience God’s presence in new parts of the world. – Fr. Shaun Crumb (serving in China)

Fr. Shaun Crumb in China

The call to serve the poor was coupled with an inspiration from reading about European Jesuit priests in the history of the US who crossed cultures to work with Native Americans. –  Fr. Lam Hua (serving in Tanzania)

Fr. Lam Hua in Tanzania

Growing up in upstate NY I attended Catholic grade school and high school. Mission was very much a part of my early years. My diocese (Ogdensburg) had a mission in Mollendo, Peru.  The Ursuline Sister who taught me in grade school and high school spoke of their mission commitments in Asia and my Uncle Donat’s brother was a missionary priest in central Africa. The charism of Brotherhood was deeply rooted in me through the life of Brother Andre Bessette (now Saint Andre) from Montreal. Br. Wayne Fitzpatrick (serving in the U.S.)

Br. Wayne (upper left) with Ogdensburg lifetime friend who served in Mollendo, Peru, Fr. Dan Chapin and Family

My calling to the priesthood came first. After discerning that the Lord was calling me to serve Him as a priest, I learned about the many ways priests work throughout the world. The idea of traveling the world, having all sorts of adventures, learning new languages, and working with people throughout Latin America, Asia, and Africa was incredibly appealing. Once I put these two callings together, I found my vocation! Fr. Peter Latouf (serving in Hong Kong)

Classmates – Frs. Peter Latouf & Daniel Kim with their parents on ordination day

I was born and raised in a traditional Catholic household so priesthood as a viable “career option” was supported and encouraged throughout my upbringing.  My calling to the ministry of the priesthood became increasing apparent as I approached adulthood and I began to explore deeper into the various expressions of this holy ministry.  I first consulted my parish priest about the diocesan life and even attended a few diocesan sponsored vocation encounters and groups.  However, after careful prayer and reflection, I came to the realization that diocesan priesthood was not my calling.  Through this discernment process I discovered a strong passion within me to step beyond the confines of my cultural context and engage the richness and vastness of Holy Spirit that is woven in the diverse fabrics of the various cultures that blankets this Globe.  In other words, the idea of living and serving as an itinerant missioner greatly appealed to me and found that this desire was deeply embedded into my being. Fr. Daniel Kim (serving in Hong Kong)

Vocations Facebook Page (2)

We understand that not everyone is a Facebook user.  However, if you take the time to visit us on Facebook (https://www.facebook.com/mklvocations)  you will find several short video testimonies of Maryknoll Missioners speaking about their vocations and experiences in Africa, Asia and Latin America.  Here is a sample by Sem. John Siyumbu: https://www.youtube.com/embed/qQI_rFCN4m8

We also have a private Facebook Vocations Group that meets regularly to watch interviews with Maryknollers where they have the opportunity to dialogue with us and with each other about missionary life.  Please visit our Vocations Facebook page and if you are interested in joining this group then just contact Fr. Rodrigo at vocation@maryknoll.org or follow the instructions on line for membership.

The Mission Bell at Maryknoll NY

ABOUT MARYKNOLL

We are a Catholic Society of priests and brothers based in the United States. We are dedicated to missionary work overseas in over 20 countries. Additionally, we animate Catholics in the United States to follow their own baptismal call to share God’s compassion and love with the poor, the sick, and all those in need.

OUR GENERAL COUNCIL

L-R Tom O'Brien, Ray Finch, Joe Everson, Russ Feldmeier

(Fr. Tom O’Brien, Fr. Ray Finch, Fr. Joe Everson, Fr. Russ Feldmeier)

The Maryknoll Fathers and Brothers is overseen by our General Council, led by Superior General Fr. Ray Finch.

OUR FOUNDERS

L-R Tom O'Brien, Ray Finch, Joe Everson, Russ Feldmeier

(Our Co-Founders Father Price and Father Walsh)

PLACES WE SERVE

EVANGELIZATION, PARISHES, AND PROJECTS

USA

STORIES OF MISSION

(Africa) Education and Formation of African Clergy

The Maryknoll Fathers and Brothers Africa Region will provide tuition assistance to African clergy, male and female religious at institutes of higher education or specialized training. Read More

Stories of Our Global Mission

The calling of a lifetime

The life of a Maryknoll missioner is challenging, fulfilling, and deeply rewarding. Follow your baptismal call to mission by sharing God’s compassion with the poor, the sick, and people most in need.

ASSOCIATE PROGRAM

Enrich your own vocation, walk-in solidarity with people overseas, and work together with Maryknoll Missioners. We offer US priests and Brothers ordained elsewhere the opportunity to work in overseas missions.

L-R Tom O'Brien, Ray Finch, Joe Everson, Russ Feldmeier
“Go where you are needed but not wanted, and stay until you are wanted but not needed.”
– Bishop James E. Walsh, M.M.
First Maryknoll Bishop