The Mission Hub


The Pontifical Mission Societies include the Society for the
Propagation of the Faith, the Missionary Childhood Association, the Society of St.Peter Apostle, and the Missionary Union of Priests and Religious. These Societies promote a prayerfulmissionary spirit among baptized Catholics and to gather a fund of support for the evangelizing and pastoral programs of more than 1,150 local churches of the Developing World.

Saturday, March 19, 2011

The Missionary Vocation Means Sharing Your Gifts

Helping children develop a deeper understanding of their own missionary vocation is at the heart of the Holy Childhood Association. We teach them about the wonders of God’s grace at work in us: while we are all called to follow Christ and spread His Gospel, each of us is given talents with which to work. The way we use those talents in serving God is our vocation – it is who God calls us to be.

On a recent visit to the Religious Education students at St. Clare Parish in Braintree, we talked about the differences we celebrate as we follow the same path. The students shared their gifts - one sang, another played hockey, another felt his talent was simply to be helpful every day.

We talked about people in the missions; didn’t God give them talents? Don’t they have vocations? Of course they do, but in many places in our world without the presence of a missionary to help set them on the God’s path, many never find them.

From halfway around the world, at another St. Clare, came a story of a vocation found.

Fr. Bernard Makadani Zulu, National Director of the Pontifical Mission Societies in Zambia emailed me the story of Sr. Alinane Phiri professing her final vows at St. Clare Monastery in Lusaka. Fr. Bernard credits Sister’s vocation to two things: the work of missionaries and her faith formation in her family.

“The splendid growth of the Church in Zambia is due largely to the selfless dedication of generations of missionaries,” he says. “The land of Zambia is sown with the tombs of courageous heralds of the Gospel.” Fr. Bernard also related that Sr. Alinane is from a very spiritual, deeply Catholic family. Faith came first in her household and it bore much fruit. Sister has a brother who is a diocesan priest and two sisters who are Religious Sisters.

Sister Alinane will be sharing the talents God gave her every day; as a girl, she learned to pray constantly and work hard. As a contemplative nun, Sister will participate in daily Mass and nightly Eucharistic adoration. She will sing the Liturgy of the Hours seven times a day with her community. Sister will also sew priests’ vestments with specialized needlework to be sold to help support the Monastery.

While Sister’s vocation has been secured, the Holy Childhood Association continues to work to help children to pray and sacrifice their way towards finding their own.
For more information on the work of the Holy Childhood Association in Zambia, visit our website's HCA: Stories From the Missions page.

-Maureen Crowley Heil

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