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2014 Mercy Missions
U. S. A. | WHO WE ARE | NEWS
Mission Youth and Regnum Christi sponsor Holy Week mission events throughout the country
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In dioceses throughout the United States, families and young people participated in Mission Youth Mercy Missions during Holy Week 2014.

Events took place in the localities of Atlanta, Georgia; Chicago Illinois; Cincinnati, Ohio; Dallas and Houston, Texas; Detroit, Michigan; Philadelphia, Pennsylvania; New York City, New York; Phoenix, Arizona; and Sacramento, California.

Following is a sampling of the variety of activities by location:

Atlanta

This year, mission activities in the Atlanta area took place at several parishes during Holy Week. The commissioning Mass took place during the vigil of Palm Sunday April 12 at Mary Our Queen parish in Norcross.  Other parishes involved included Holy
Braving the rain in Atlanta
Braving the rain in Atlanta
Cross, St. Thomas Aquinas, St. Brendan’s, Holy Spirit Mission, St. Joseph in Athens, St. Matthew in Winder and the Carmel Retreat Center, among other locations.  A combined 500 missionaries shared their faith with others, participating in nursing home visits, feeding the homeless, doing building and repair projects based on local needs, and promoting prayer and confession.

This year photographs were submitted from each of the mission sites.  To view, go to the RC Atlanta photo page at the following link:  https://rcatlantaphotos.shutterfly.com/pictures/5.

Chicago

Among other activities, Holy Week missions in Chicago included a five-mile cross walk from Holy Name Cathedral to St.
Serving food in Chicago
Serving food in Chicago
Alphonsus parish.  Missionaries also helped to make beds, set up the tables, and feed about 800 homeless at Pacific Garden Mission homeless center in Chicago, reportedly the "oldest, continuously operating rescue mission in the country."

Cincinnati

In the Cincinnati area, the diocesan newsletter, the Catholic Beat, promoted local mission events (Click here to read the article.)

Activities took place from April 16 through 19 in locations in inner city and downtown Cincinnati.  Missionaries worked at area charities, held a cross walk and Stations of the Cross devotion, and supported the local tradition of “Praying the Steps” at the cathedral. The commissioning Mass took place Wednesday evening at Royalmont Academy  in Mason.

Photos of the activities can be found at the Cincinnati Holy Week Mercy Missions Facebook
Worshiping in Cincinnati
Worshiping in Cincinnati
page.  Click here to see a Youtube video of the mission.

Dallas

In Dallas, a group of boys served Our Lady of Perpetual Help parish, and 40 families led an Easter carnival for children, then visited residents at a Catholic nursing home. The entire group of missionaries (boys, girls, and families) enjoyed a lunch break together on Holy Saturday.

According to Regnum Christi consecrated woman Carrie O’Connor, one of the most outstanding experiences during their local mission was washing the feet of more 100 people who came to the food pantry on Holy Thursday morning. Missionaries waited near the food line, where 1,158 people received groceries.  They said to the people, "Today is Holy Thursday, the day that Jesus washed the feet of his disciples. May I wash your feet as a sign of Christian service?"

“Their openness was so humbling for all of us,” said Carrie. “We had wonderful conversations with the people who were truly grateful for this unexpected gesture. Almost all of our missionaries had the courage to do this, which was very inspiring to me!”

The young women missionaries provided some testimonies about their mission experience:

Jasmine said: “I didn’t know what to expect. It’s encouraged me to put myself out there. No matter how little it is, I can make a big impact on people. I don’t know if the people will remember me, but I will definitely remember them.”

Xochitl said: “I washed the feet of a man who has calluses, and I felt how hard they were compared to mine. These people we were helping have been through so much…I have never come in contact with people like this.”

Juanita said: “When I used to see homeless people I would get scared, but now I see God in them.”

Nathalie said: “Holy Week is special because I get to walk with Christ every step of the way. God’s love for me is greater than my fear.”

Carla said: “Coming into this week I was really excited, waiting for the opportunity to get out of the ordinary things and be a missionary again. Being with people who love Christ so much makes me want to love Christ more and be a better person.”

Emma said: “I’ve never been on a mission before. I had an expectation in my
Praying at abortion clinic in Dallas
Praying at abortion clinic in Dallas
mind of what I would get out of it. I didn’t get what I wanted, but what I needed. Meeting people, hearing their stories, touched me a lot. It helped me look at my relationship with Christ and what I want in life.”

Daniela said: “This mission helped me to remember that I can and I want to open my heart up to God.”

Laura said: “I came here to get the spirit going again…I’ve been discouraged at home because there’s not a lot going on in the church. I got fired up again!”

Angelica said: “It helped me grow spiritually and in discerning my vocation.”

Detroit

Regnum Christi members in the Detroit metro area held a Family Mission on Holy Thursday and Good Friday.  Thursday activities included visiting Mendelson Nursing home in Waterford, Michigan, and conducting a “Stations of the Cross” devotion with the residents.

On Good Friday, missionaries witnessed the live Stations of the Cross event at St. Vincent de Paul parish in Pontiac.  They also held an Easter petting zoo for parish families, facilitated special reflection presentations for parish teens, and introduced the Pilgrim Queen of the Family rosary program to parish families.

Houston

Mission activities in Houston included more than 25 families, about 90 people in total. They supported St. Bart’s Parish in Katy, Texas, and knocked on more than 550 doors on Thursday and Holy Friday, inviting people to talks, catechesis, and confessions.

On Holy Saturday, in a day full of “humility and charity,” the missionaries served two groups of refugee children from Catholic Charities at Hermann Park. They played with the children, helping them to learn more about their faith and had a lot of fun!

New York

The Missions in New York City took place in the Soho area, surrounding St Patrick Old Cathedral (one of the oldest Churches in the city and the first Cathedral).

Missionaries representing groups from New York, New Jersey, Connecticut, and Pennsylvania began work on Monday of Holy Week. At times there 200 missionaries in the Soho streets, an area famous for art, restaurants, and shopping. About 100 young people participated in the missions and had special activities, including a
Live Stations in New York
Live Stations in New York
cross walk through Manhattan, living Stations of the Cross in the streets of Soho with more than 500 people present, and a “midnight run” in which missionaries helped to give food and clothes to the homeless. On Saturday, they visited Harlem to play games with the children there.

Legionary priests heard confessions (at times with up to nine priests) at the Old Cathedral. The consecrated women and Legionary brothers assisted with youth mission activities, and the consecrated men helped to receive visitors at the Old Cathedral parish.

Go to the following link to read the missionaries’ blog, where they recorded the main stories of each day: http://www.loveyourmission.org/2014HWMblog.htm.

Go to the following links to see videos on Youtube:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mVKhD_a4n-g&feature=share
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4Hwm0ZDJ8bg

Philadelphia

Missionaries met at St. Patrick’s Church in downtown Philadelphia to promote an upcoming Stations of the Cross devotion to people in Rittenhouse Square.  They celebrated the Mass of the Last Supper at St. Patrick’s in the evening and then held an event to supply food for homeless residents. On the morning of Good Friday, missionaries prayed in front of a local Planned Parenthood facility, and then held a crosswalk through the downtown area collecting prayer intentions. They stayed to witness the Live
On the bus in Philadelphia
On the bus in Philadelphia
Stations event that they earlier had invited people to attend, and then participated in the Good Friday service at St. Patrick’s.

Phoenix

About 15 members of Challenge participated in the Holy Week missions in the Phoenix area.  Activities surrounded the local St. Anne´s parish and “accomplished so much,” according to Regnum Christi member Christina Campbell, one of the organizers.

Their accomplishments included:
-packing 51 boxes (11,016 meals) of MannaPack meals for the “Feed My Starving Children” program http://www.fmsc.org/home.
-hosting a Stations of the Cross service for children at St. Anne´s for hundreds of parishioners.
-making 12 fleece tie blankets for hospitalized children for the Project Linus http://linusblankets.org/.
-assembling 43 boxes of books, toys and games for hospitalized children for the Jared Box Project http://www.thejaredbox.com/index.html.
- putting together 40 bag lunches for homeless families for “Save the Family” http://savethefamily.org/.
-distributing dozens of boxes of food to needy families at the St. Anne’s ministry “Friends of the Needy.”
-handing out dozens of fliers with Mass and Confession times for Easter weekend in the local neighborhood.
-helping clean and decorate the church to prepare for Easter.
-visiting residents of Emeritus Senior Living of Gilbert and handing out dozens of Easter Eggs that they colored.

Sacramento

Starting on Holy Thursday, 100 teenage missionaries participated in the Holy Week Missions in Sacramento, California. The missionaries participated in “street evangelization” and supported the National Shrine of Our Lady of Guadalupe in downtown Sacramento.  They led a four-hour camp for about 100 kids
Missionaries in Sacramento
Missionaries in Sacramento
on Saturday.

Congratulations to all for this wonderful work!


PUBLICATION DATE: 2014-05-01


 
 


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Sponsored by the congregation of the Legionaries of Christ and the Regnum Christi Movement, Copyright 2011, Legion of Christ. All rights reserved.


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