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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.

Please click here to subscribe to the electronic PDF version email list.

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

Saturday, 31 October 2015 03:26

Whose Prophet Am I? 

Written by

John Moritz – Southeast Regional Coordinator, Northeast Florida Chapter

In this series of articles on Formation, we are intentionally not looking at the five themes in the order listed in the website: Affiliate Identity, Mission, Spirituality of Mission, Community, and Prophetic Witness. These themes are not linear or sequential; they are all relational with the other themes and build on each other. In upcoming articles, we will look at how the themes of Community and Mission contribute to our identity as Maryknoll Affiliates. Today, we look at the Formation theme of Prophetic Witness

We are all prophets, every day. By where we live, what kind of car we drive, everything we do, we proclaim what we hold dear to us. As with all five Formation themes, Prophetic Witness is not so much about knowing things but is a process of discernment.We all make choices about how we live, and that speaks volumes about who we are. Both individually and communally, what we announce and denounce in word and action is what identifies us to the world around us.

Sunday, 30 August 2015 00:00

The Spirit is Moving [Us]

Written by

Wherever two or three are gathered...but especially when Affiliates have a conference...the Spirit is moving. This issue gives just an inkling of the Spirit of this summer’s conferences. If you weren’t able to make it to one of the two Conferences featured in this issue—The Midwest Regional Retreat Conference or the Western Regional Affiliate Conference—see the advance notice on this page from the New Orleans/Gulf South Chapter. As with any regional conference, all are welcome.

You may have received the NSFA attached to a new email. Our updated database means more people than ever are receiving the NSFA. If you haven’t already, please send your updated chapter contact list to the NSFA and to our Executive Coordinator, Bob Short  (This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.), so that everyone in your chapter will receive the NSFA and other important Affiliate communications.

The NSFA still hasn’t received an Affiliate reflection on the Pope’s environmental encyclical, Laudato Si, but we have heard that one chapter is supporting a Campaign Nonviolence action themed, “Caring for our Common Home.” They stand in solidarity with Pope Francis as he addresses the US Congress on September  24th. 

Write us with your reflections and news at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

 Articles in this issue:

Renewing the Joy of Mission—Shifting into the Future – "Our approach to developing the schedule may be a key to why the weekend was so satisfying."—Kathleen Gribble


Western Regional Affiliate Conference – "The Seattle Affiliates worked as a team, making the weekend flow smoothly for all of us. They looked like they enjoyed being together, and they worked as a single unit, like honeybees."—Kitty Schiltz  


Missing Affiliate Marie Parmly – "Although 85 years old when our Chapter first formed, Marie came to our meetings faithfully and often got others to come with her."—Mary Moritz

Friends Across Borders in Brazil – "I set out imagining a country with some native Indian tribes, having been colonized by the Portuguese. I ended up visiting a multi-ethnic, diverse country with a large Japanese population (invited to come as farmers), Italians, Germans, Syrians, people from different countries in Africa, and an indigenous Indian tribe (the Guarani Mbya)."—Mary Morris Williams

Planting Seeds of Nonviolence – "Mary [Hanson] cautioned us to not cross the blue line on the pavement marking the edge of federal property. Crossing would be considered criminal trespass."—Manny Hotchkiss

My Visit to the Casa Materna in Matagalpa – "I thought it would be wonderful to actually see for myself the operation of this wonderful Maternity Home."—Gabriela Maertens

A Day in a Lay Missioner’s Life – "My job title [Communications Coordinator] is hilarious to me, as I feel that at any given moment I am lucky if 80 percent of the conversation is understood by both parties."—Karen Bortvedt

And don't miss the entries in this issue's Features, Events, and The Board and EC Speak!


Sunday, 30 August 2015 00:00

Regional Coordinators—Change Is Coming

Written by

At the Western Region Affiliates Conference in Seattle, Jerrie Drinkwine announced that nominations have been received for a new Northwest Regional Coordinator (RC) and that ballots will be distributed September 12. We will announce the new Northwest RC in the next NSFA. RCs serve the Affiliate movement by connecting and communicating with the Board, Executive Coordinator, and chapters. They’re the glue that holds us together.  

Sunday, 30 August 2015 00:00

Survey Update

Written by

The Affiliate Board sends its thanks to all who completed Survey of Individual Affiliates which was conducted by your Maryknoll Affiliate Board this summer. The survey results will be discussed at the next Board meeting in October, and a report will be published online and in the NSFA before they move into the next stage of this “getting to know you” process with the Chapter Reflection.


Sunday, 30 August 2015 00:00

New Formation Program Posted

Written by

The new Initial Formation program (and process) has been posted on the Maryknoll Affiliates website. The links to materials associated with each module are posted, and some materials can be downloaded for printing.

To open the Formation program, go to the website, maryknollaffiliates.org, and click on the Who We Are tab. On the Who We Are page, go to the Quick Links blue box on the right, click on Chapters and Formation, and look for “Initial Formation 2015.”


We especially thank John Moritz, Southeast Region co-coordinator with his wife Mary, for heading up this initiative.

Sunday, 30 August 2015 00:00

Affiliates from Lima in Maryknoll Magazine

Written by

See the August 2015 Maryknoll Magazine for a story about and quotes from several Maryknoll Affiliates in Lima, Peru. US Affiliates met some of these Affiliates from Peru at the 2014 Maryknoll Affiliates Conference in New York. 

Sunday, 30 August 2015 00:00

Pray with Pope Francis

Written by

Pope Francis, asking us to pray with him, has suggested these special intentions:

        September: That opportunities for education and employment may increase for all young people.


       October: That human trafficking, the modern form of slavery, may be eradicated.

Sunday, 30 August 2015 00:00

Mission Institute 2015 – CALIFORNIA

Written by

A forum of adult learning and reflection on world church and mission

Upcoming events:

Sept. 16-19  Edwina Gateley, MA – Our Call to Personal and Global Transformation (Los Altos, CA)

Sept. 20-25  Edwina Gateley, MA – Soul Sisters: Women Called to Connect, Bond and Heal in a Broken World  (Monrovia, CA)


For details, see: http://maryknollsisters.org/maryknoll-mission-institute.

Saturday, 29 August 2015 00:00

A day in a Lay Missioner’s Life

Written by

Karen Bortvedt – Maryknoll Lay Missioner, Cambodia

My brain often feels like a station wagon from a 70s movie, loaded down with people, noise, and commotion, cruising along an empty highway until, suddenly, someone notices smoke seeping from under the hood. It pulls over, and someone opens the hood, no doubt burning his or her fingers, and releases a great cloud of steam. At this point, the whole gang realizes they are going nowhere soon or fast. 

On a good day, I can make it until lunch without my brain fizzling out—from overheating either literally or metaphorically. Often, I have to push it from behind just to keep it moving forward. Either way, I am going nowhere fast in Cambodia – it is just not the culture.

Saturday, 29 August 2015 00:00

My Visit to the Casa Materna in Matagalpa

Written by

Gabriella Maertens – Portland Chapter

After my volunteer assignment in San José, Costa Rica, I traveled by bus to visit Kitty Madden, a Maryknoll Affiliate in Matagalpa, Nicaragua. She has lived there for 29 years, putting her heart and soul into serving the needs of high-risk pregnant women. Casa Materna, established in 1991 as the very first maternal care center in Nicaragua, offers food, shelter, education, medical care, transportation and support for high-risk pregnant women from rural areas for one to two weeks before and after childbirth.  

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