New Orleans Chapter Affiliates participated in the New Orleans Peoples’ Climate March on Saturday, April 29th, joining thousands from around the country. Kevin Cahalan prepared our marching banner, highlighting Pope Francis’ words from Laudato Sí, “The earth, our common home, is beginning to look like an immense pile of filth.” One lady from Fort Worth, Texas, who was attracted to our banner, came up to our group proclaiming her great affection for Pope Francis. In addition to our five Affiliates, there were some 400-500 participants shouting in a loud voice: “This is what democracy looks like!”
The New Orleans Chapter of Maryknoll Affiliates invites all Affiliates to their Regional Conference! Spend a weekend on the shore of Lake Pontchartrain with fellow Affiliates and other Maryknollers. Hear and discuss the messages of the keynote speakers:
The schedule includes time for prayer and reflection, as well as many opportunities to connect with others during community-building activities, over meals, and at a Cajun fais do do and talent show. You will also gain access to Fr. Gerry Kelly, MM’s Third Wave resources for mission education.
(Arrangements may be made to extend your stay before or after the conference.)
Matt Rousso – 504-866-8516 or 504-376-4142
Take advantage of this opportunity to see a different side of vibrant and historic New Orleans.
Mignon Wolfe (82), a longtime Affiliate with the New Orleans Chapter, went home to God on January 2nd with a heart full of love and dressed with her red dancing shoes! Mignon suffered a stroke in October 2015 and worked hard in therapy to recover her loss of memory. She returned home just before Christmas with the hope and motivation of being well again. Unfortunately, she had a second stroke on January 2nd and did not regain consciousness.
Mignon, a free spirit known for her energy, joy, and love of God, loved everyone as her best and “precious friend.” With a brother who is a former Maryknoller, naturally she joined our Affiliate group as soon as we began. As an Affiliate, Mignon was committed to Maryknoll and to our community, praying in earnest for each of us, especially during our involvement in mission immersion trips and other projects. We will miss Mignon—our precious friend.
Tuesday of Thanksgiving week, my wife Janet, along with a friend and co-volunteer from the St. Vincent de Paul Learning Center, took over our kitchen and began a feverish cooking spree. Several hours later, they filled the trunk of their car with huge pans of bread stuffing, bowls of salad, cranberry relish, etc., and headed for a center in one of the impoverished neighborhoods of New Orleans. There they met up with five other Maryknoll Affiliates and five volunteers from the Catholic Worker House. Along with Janet and Francis’s pans of food, more pans of mashed potatoes, baked turkeys, bread, and desserts were brought in and set up for serving.
The Affiliates of New Orleans mourned the death of one of our very well liked and respected New members in early October. Though he, along with his wife Angela, was an Affiliate for only three short years, he always chided Matt for not inviting him to join the Maryknoll Affiliates earlier.
Besides being a good Affiliate, Russ was very active in many civic and church affairs. One of his friends described the Russ we knew: “He modeled what it was to be a Christian without pretension. He loved life; he loved people; he loved his family. ‘Professor Past,’ his clown name, was generous with his time and loved not only to entertain but to visit with those in the nursing homes. Sometimes faced with difficult choices, love was always the deciding factor.”
We all miss him!
Dates: September 30th – October 7, 2014.
Cost: Only $450 plus airfare
Only a few weeks left to sign up for this experience! Matt Rousso (New Orleans Mission Ed Director) and Fr. Gerry Kelly, MM (Houston Director) will lead this Immersion Program which promises to be very exciting.
One of the things we are planning on doing as an Affiliate project re: Centennial is to get a blurb about the Centennial in the Diocesan Newspaper and in the Daily; we would include a note about our Affiliate Group and invite inquiries.
In addition to the newspaper blurbs, is a Day of Recollection/Prayer on April 9th. Also the Affiliates will help to host a Donors' thank you even/Eucharist in October. Fr. Leo Shea is scheduled as the principal celebrant.
Texas Mission Conference
February 25 – 27, 2011
Sunday Morning Address
by: Matt Rousso
Introduction: Good morning! In the agenda, this morning's session is scheduled as "On-Going Formation and Mission Activity/Reflection." I had planned on doing a sort of "show and tell" – telling you about some of the things I've done re: on-going formation for participants of short term mission immersion programs and giving you a number of handouts that you might find helpful. However, I had a very restless night and very early this morning I decided that I needed to rewrite my talk for this session. Rather than an informative session, I'd like to have a sincere and open "heart to heart" sharing with you as directors of short term mission programs. I think that the vast majority of us here this morning are directors of programs. Others of you have been on more than one short term mission program so what I have to say is addressed to you also . . . I also need to forewarn you that what I have to say may be controversial. A participant told me yesterday that he found very challenging something I had said in one of the small group discussions. You also may find challenging some things I say today; and I confess, I myself will be challenged by some of what I have to say.
You know just recently I received notice that I have been working with Maryknoll for twenty years. And this morning I am realizing that I have been participating in the Texas Mission Conference for twenty years. In fact, only two other people who participated in this year's Conference have been here more than me – Larry Boudreau, who is here this morning and Sr. Patricia Ridgley, who was here yesterday. During these twenty years I have directed forty something short term mission trips to Nicaragua, Honduras, Guatemala, Haiti, Mexico, and El Salvador. And during these twenty years I have come to know some of you and have profited greatly from your experiences in mission – people like Awanda Whitworth, Fr. Ralph Davila, Fr. Bill Donnelly, Colleen and Felicia and Ken Eppes and Fr. Gerry Kelly, and many others. I wonder how many trips we have directed cumulatively. All total, I wonder how many people have we taken into mission – young people and adults?
I think we can proudly say that we have become really good at leading Mission Trips! We know how to recruit, who to contact in the host countries, what activities to provide for participants. We've written books and essays and directions. People even talk well about us! In fact, they talk so well about us that it should cause us to say, as Dom Helder Camara once said, "I pray that I can become the person people think I am."
During these days of Christmas, as we reflect and celebrate the wonderful coming of God to the world in the person of Jesus, we must be in awe. Is there a greater mystery? Can anything move us more? The Preface of Christmas says it beautifully: “In the wonder of the incarnation… we have a new vision of God’s glory. In Jesus we see our God made visible.” I heard a line in one of the Christmas carols Friday night that really touched me: “Did Mary know when she kissed her baby boy, that she was kissing the face of God?”