Not So Far Afield is a bimonthly publication of the Maryknoll Affiliates. The name is a play on the title of the original Maryknoll Magazine: The Field Afar.

You may subscribe to Not So Far Afield by email or to be notified when it is posted on our website.

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You may also download PDF versions of Not So Far Afield here.

Monday, 18 February 2019 22:28

What a Few Affiliates Can Do

Written by

Ron Covey – Houston Chapter

Have you ever wondered, as I do, what caused the miracle of Caminando Por La Paz to continue? In the nearly ten years since Father Tom Goekler's death, we at Caminando have received an unbelievable amount of support from our fellow Affiliates. We believe that God has used the Affiliates to continue the miracle of Caminando.

After a nutritious meal, the students enjoy the tutoring session.

When I first became involved with the Caminando Por La Paz Catholic Worker House, the Catholic Worker House in New Haven, CT, sent us some money for our educational efforts. I was not sure how I could communicate sufficiently with the folks at Caminando, so I arranged a meeting with the Affiliates of the Guatemala Chapter. That Guatemala Chapter continues to be in strong solidarity with us, giving encouragement to us and all our activities. Rosa Beatriz (Guatemala chapter and Affiliate Board member) says, “Our meetings make us feel as one community.” She also says it is such a joy to see our red truck coming with the people from “Zone 18,” as they refer to us from Caminando.

Monday, 18 February 2019 22:25

Kenyan Affiliate Chapter Welcomed

Written by

An exciting exploration of new ways to be Affiliates is blossoming in Kenya. Fourteen prospective Affiliates from Mombasa, Nairobi, California, Chicago, Florida, and Germany have been coming together for formation, discussion and prayer, in person and virtually, since 2017. Interfaith collaboration is a guiding principle of their chapter. Members include Catholic and non-Catholic Christians and a Muslim. The chapter has a strong interaction with various Maryknollers. The Affiliate Board accepted their application in January. We look to learn much from this new chapter.

Monday, 18 February 2019 22:19

News from the Board: Meet Ted Miles

Written by

As Executive Director for Maryknoll Lay Missioners since December 2017, I also serve on the Maryknoll Affiliate Board as its liaison with the Maryknoll Lay Missioners. In this position, I am discovering ways that all Maryknollers can work together in mission.

My mission background started when I was “ruined for life” with a little help from the Jesuits.  After my B.A. at Loyola University, Maryland, and M.A. from Bucknell University, I volunteered with Jesuit Volunteers for two years in education and youth empowerment programs in Belize and Guatemala.

Since then, I have served in parish ministry, Catholic high school education, and archdiocesan leadership development for more than three decades. My most recent position was as Catholic Relief Services’ Relationship Manager for Youth and Education and coordinator of the agency’s youth outreach in the US. I’m humbled that the National Federation for Catholic Youth Ministry awarded me a national award for leadership in youth ministry in the area of gospel values of peace and justice.

Fun Facts:  My favorite pastimes include time with my niece and two nephews, following the Baltimore Orioles, and swimming, camping, and hiking, the latter fueling my passion to work for climate justice.  

 

Friday, 28 December 2018 22:43

Changing Year

Written by

The new year beckons. Are we open to change? Will our actions and words change us, or others?

On our cover, Evelyn Brush experiences Radical Hospitality and says she is forever changed. Seattle Affiliates learn that racism cripples all of us, but that the words and actions of the transformational values of abundance, transparency and collaboration could change unjust systems.

Pope Francis’ new peace prayer urges communication with new words and actions as the way to peace. Our executive coordinator, Bob Short offers the possibility of a deeper knowing with wordless contemplation, as does a new virtual chapter.

In transformational action, ten Affiliates came together in Texas, prayed, reflected, and then transformed a house damaged by hurricane Harvey. Email the Kleemans, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., if you’re interested in repairing more houses, possibly the first week of April 2019.

The NSFA invites your plans, words and actions: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Articles in this issue:

Border Crossing - "I had been truly out of my element."—Evelyn Brush

Building the Beloved Community: Racism and Beyond - "As Christian Americans seeking justice, we need to face up to our role in racism."—Kitty Schiltz

The Inspiration for Chapter Companions - "Now we are working to get the word out to all chapters, wherever they are, that they can have a Maryknoller as a companion."—Mary Moritz

The Blessings of Companionship - "There is such potential in the Companions program to add to the richness of the Affiliate experience."—Gerry Mullaney

Houston Chapter’s Maryknoll Affiliate Mission - "It was obvious that the Holy Spirit sent the right people with the right skills to get the job done."—Judy Horstman

Sustaining Huruma - "So many awe-inspiring developments in the past year!"—Bertha Haas

Easy Meeting—Global Vision – "Over our meal, we had many conversations with each other about our global connections."—Mary Ryan-Hotchkiss

Nicaragua: Speaking Truth to Power - "No one could have imagined the catastrophic changes about to emerge."—Kitty Madden

Learn more about your Maryknoll Affiliate Board and Executive Coordinator in these articles:

Knowing in the Wordless Spaces - Jim Coady insightfully added that almost always, “We learn more from experiences than from documents.”

A Presence with Past Connections – "Because of my interest in our Affiliate movement, I am happy to be one of the liaisons to the Maryknoll Affiliates."—Sr. Norie Mojado, MM

And be sure to enjoy the Features in this issue:

Notices January/February 2019 (including an announcement for this year's Book Group); Prayer of Pope FrancisKARIBU - Come On In ; and Maryknoll Mission Institute 2019.

If you are more comfortable reading the Not So Far Afield in its print form, you may download a pdf of the January/February 2019 issue. 

Friday, 28 December 2018 19:37

Border Crossing

Written by

Evelyn Brush – Portland Chapter

A presentation on human trafficking I attended was both informative and disturbing. Thankfully, the presenters included a list of actions and opportunities if we wanted to be more involved. One opportunity was at Rahab’s Sisters.

Rahab’s Sisters, a safe space for women to gather each Friday night, offers dinner, time off the street or away from ‘boyfriends,’ and needed supplies: socks, underwear, and hygiene items. It operates out of Sts. Peter and Paul Episcopal Church in Portland, Oregon. Volunteers serve the female guests (and those who self-identify as female), most of whom are unhoused and over 45 years old. Some are prostitutes; many are addicts, and many are women of color.

Rahab’s Sisters emphasizes Radical Hospitality. Their vision is a city where all women are safe from physical and sexual exploitation. They offer a warm, safe environment with nutritious food, hot coffee, and conversation. From 7-10 in the evening, it is a place for women helping women, whatever the guest’s condition. Actively using drugs is discouraged, but “Our sisters are welcomed without judgment, no strings attached.” (https://rahabs-sisters.org

Friday, 28 December 2018 19:24

Notices – January/February 2019

Written by

Affiliate Book Group

 

The Affiliate Book Group resumes April 2019!

Come join us. We suggest reading and discussing ~

Choosing Peace
edited by Marie Dennis

 

(https://www.orbisbooks.com/choosing-peace.html)

 

Email Bob at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. with your best day
and time for a weekly telephone conversation, and any
additional books or authors you’d like us to consider.



 

Take a Starring Role!

How do you participate in your chapter?

Some possibilities:

  • Prepare meeting sections, i.e., Spirituality.
  • Invite new members.
  • Lead a book/article discussion.
  • Take notes and write a meeting report.
  • Suggest possible new actions.
  • Organize a potluck meal.
  • Take your turn as Chapter Coordinator.

Your chapter appreciates your involvement!

 

Friday, 28 December 2018 19:19

Building the Beloved Community: Racism and Beyond

Written by

Kitty Schiltz – Seattle Chapter

In November, instead of their usual meeting, seven Seattle Affiliates attended the Intercommunity Peace & Justice Center’s workshop by that name. It was presented by two Notre Dame Sisters who work with Pax Christi: Patricia Chappell, Executive Director, and Anne Louis Nadeau, Director of Programs. This dynamic duo presented a fast-paced exposé of racism—its history and effects. They defined racism as America’s original sin against people of color, including those of African, African-American, Caribbean, Latino, or Middle Eastern ancestry.

In groups, we discussed why talking about racism is taboo among white people and how we identify ourselves as white. Our group had a mixture of people of color and white. It came down to the belief that white people, mostly in denial of their role in racism, feel shame, fear, or pain when discussing it. White privilege is both conscious and unconscious. Racism combines personal racial prejudice and the misuse of power by systems and institutions.

Friday, 28 December 2018 19:13

KARIBU* – Come On In

Written by

Bill Murphy – Boston Chapter

 

Come - move your feet,

Take that step

subdue that fear of being

different   uncomfortable    vulnerable.

Being a stranger goes both ways –

through the threshold of this hut/home

new worlds open

for you

for them.

Karibu, calls -

what do you hear?

what do you do?

 

*a Swahili greeting of welcome in East Africa
Friday, 28 December 2018 19:09

Knowing in the Wordless Spaces

Written by

Bob Short – Executive Coordinator

At their most recent gathering of the first virtual chapter*, members spontaneously surfaced the thought that maybe there are just too many words attached to almost everything these days… dishonest political words, manipulative marketing words, sanctimonious religious words, ego words that compare, compete, connive, contrast, contrive and, perhaps the biggest offenders, all those unsettling words and scenarios that incessantly play out in our heads. Understandably, some of you reading this might be feeling that this article is itself quickly becoming an offender in this verbosity plague. 

Words are important. Poetic, truthful words, and others like, thank you, forgive me, I love you, whoops, and, for carnivores, medium rare, surely have a place.  Still, we haven’t done very well at sticking to the good words. How can we best get hold of all this?

Over-explanation separates us
from astonishment. –
Eugene Ionesco

As the conversation evolved, we talked (admittedly, in words) about those wordless spaces – walking in the forest, standing by the ocean, listening to music, sitting in a chapel, holding a newborn – wherein peace washes over us and we come to know in a different, peaceful and compelling way. You too might be tempted to add to the list. Hopefully, neither Chardonnay nor Merlot would get many honest votes in this regard.

Mostly, our time together focused on how each of us has come to a place of deeper knowing. Jim Coady insightfully added that almost always, “We learn more from experiences than from documents.” Although not physically present in this virtual community, Richard Rohr helped us out when he wrote that, “Knowing is the empty space around the words, allowing God to fill in all the gaps in an ‘unspeakable’ way.” That could serve as a definition for faith.

From a distance, all this might seem a bit fuzzy and/or dense. Even that characterization will be euphemistic for some. Still, as 2019 begins to unfold and all of us in Maryknoll strive to live with integrity, love, and groundedness in these very uncertain, noisy times, we can gain strength and courage by visiting these wordless spaces.  I think that those in the Contemplative Virtual Chapter would concur.

*Currently, three chapters meet virtually: one of Affiliates who've moved, the Contemplative Virtual Chapter, and an international chapter.

 

Friday, 28 December 2018 19:04

Prayer of Pope Francis

Written by

Lord, make us instruments of your peace.

Help us to recognize the evil latent in a communication that does not build communion.

Help us to remove the venom from our judgements.

Help us to speak about others as our brothers and sisters.

You are faithful and trustworthy; may our words be seeds of goodness for the world:

where there is shouting, let us practice listening;

where there is confusion, let us inspire harmony;

where there is ambiguity, let us bring clarity;

where there is exclusion, let us offer solidarity;

where there is sensationalism, let us use sobriety;

where there is superficiality, let us raise real questions;

where there is prejudice, let us awaken trust;

where there is hostility, let us bring respect;

where there is falsehood, let us bring truth.

Amen.

 

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