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.

Monday, November 14, 2011

Holy Childhood Association: Building Bridges

Through the Holy Childhood Association, we ask our Catholic students to do two things – pray and sacrifice so that other children around the world may come to know how much God loves them. HCA is at work around the world putting those offerings to use, helping children receive the education, health care and opportunities they deserve all the while teaching them the Catholic faith. What can sometimes surprise our HCA members here at home is that many of these children in the missions take part in HCA programs themselves as givers, not just receivers.

This was in evidence when I visited St. Maria Goretti School in the Archdiocese of Tororo, Uganda as part of my mission trip to Africa in June. Students learn the Ugandan HCA National Anthem, singing, “We are the children of the Holy Childhood, St. Kizito, pray for us…” They are invoking the Patron Saint of Children in Uganda to inspire them to generosity as they sing. As part of their mission education they learn about the World Mission Rosary and pray for children around the world and the missionaries who serve them. And, yes, they sacrifice for other children who have less than they do, presenting their local Mission Director with a large bag of toys, books and clothing to be passed on to a village where the children are in greater need.

When these very generous HCA members had finished their singing, dancing and skits, it was my turn to present to them. I took the stage in front of over one thousand beautiful children of God, humbled by their talents. I told them that in Boston when I visit a school or parish, I often teach the children a song that HCA members in Haiti had taught me years before; would they like to learn it as well? I gave the Ugandan students a choice – to learn it in English (which they speak) or Haitian Creole? Creole won by acclamation!

And so, a bridge was built by Holy Childhood, from Haiti to Boston to Uganda as the children lifted their voices in a simple melody with words that are the basic message HCA wants every child to know:

I’m so happy Jesus loves me! I’m so happy Jesus loves me! I’m so happy Jesus loves me! Oh, Alleluia! Jesus loves me! Oh, Alleluia! Jesus loves me!

For more information on how your children can become members of the Holy Childhood Association, contact me at 617-779-3871 or email me at [email protected]

-Maureen Crowley Heil

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