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.

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Most of this issue of the NSFA relates to Father Jim Madden, MM, who passed away this January. He initiated our Movement and formed Affiliate chapters in the US and Peru. Even if you didn’t have the blessing of meeting him, we trust that you will be inspired by his article and the challenge which he wrote as his last words to us Affiliates. He envisions us growing, on a mission of love and life.

Please read Father Jim’s message in its entirety and meditate on your role in the aspects he lovingly details. Perhaps your chapter could reflect on them as the basis for an upcoming meeting.

Thursday, 13 March 2014 00:00

Visioning with the Maryknoll Mission Movement

Written by

Fr. Jim Madden, January 2014

Love is a consciousness of belonging to another, of being part of a whole. To love is to be on the way toward integral wholeness, to live with an openness of mind and heart, to encounter the other-not as stranger-but as another part of oneself. When we enter into the heart of love, that integral wholeness of love that is God, we enter into the field of relatedness and come to see that we are wholes within wholes. This is the consciousness we need today, an integral wholeness of love that is open to new life; a being-at-home in love that can evolve.”
The Unbearable Wholeness of Being: God, Evolution, and the Power of Love, Ilia Delio, OSF.

The most critical decision humanity needs to face in the first half of the 21st century is whether we will chose life or continue on the current path toward suicide for our human species and many other life forms. 

Tuesday, 11 March 2014 00:00

Social Media: a New Mission Language

Written by

Ken Eppes – North Texas Chapter

If mission is going to continue past our lifetimes, we must reach young people, and young people live in the culture of social media.

Social media is a culture with its own language. As missioners, we must learn this culture and language, just as we learn the cultures and languages of peoples in foreign lands. That was the wisdom of the United States Catholic Mission Association conference held in St. Louis in October, 2013. Much of it is applicable to our Affiliate chapters and ministries.

Sunday, 09 March 2014 00:00

Pilgrimage Retreat in Guatemala

Written by

Joan Cruz – Long Island Chapter

I am sitting at my dining table on All Souls Day evening in the silence of my home, remembering with joy the time I spent in Santa Ana with a wonderful community of Maryknoll Affiliates. I want these memories to never leave my heart and soul. I am so thankful to have been part of this Affiliate mission pilgrimage to Guatemala. It was a time of prayer, forming community and being with those who are materially poor. We crossed borders to discover the meaning of mission spirituality, and we experienced walking with the poor by living among them in a simple mission house.

Monday, 10 March 2014 00:00

Communication in the Affiliate World

Written by

Bob Short – Executive Coordinator

Communication, good or bad, will significantly influence whether we succeed or fail as an organization, local group or as individuals.

In today’s world a hefty amount of communication is electronic via the Internet: email, texting, Facebook, Twitter, etc. For Affiliates, given that a few of us are over 17 years old, electronic media, particularly social media like Facebook, Instagram and Twitter, could be foreign, perhaps frightening. Some among us might even have emotional or spiritual reasons to reject the digital world, feeling it is just too soul smothering and dehumanizing. I sometimes have those thoughts myself.

Saturday, 08 March 2014 00:00

Sending Ceremony, Once Again

Written by

Dan Driscoll-Shaw – Chicago Central Chapter

Our Chicago Central Maryknoll Affiliates community has been blessed to share many times in one of the highlights and most significant experiences of all the Maryknoll entities, the Sending Ceremony. 

Our most recent Sending Ceremony took place December 15, 2013. We blessed Merwyn and Kirstin DeMello as they go forth to begin a three-year commitment in Afghanistan with the Mennonite Central Committee.

Friday, 07 March 2014 00:00

Working with Jim Madden …

Written by

Ellen McDonald, MM – January 10, 2014 

Jim Madden and Ellen McDonald—co-founders of Maryknoll Affiliates.

In 1991 I began a three-year service position in the newly created joint Maryknoll Mission Archives. I had barely been assigned a desk when Fr. Jim Madden came in looking for two things: the book, The Maryknoll Movement, by Fr. George Powers, and Sr. Barbara Hendricks’ article on the Maryknoll charism. Jim liked to recall that moment as the beginning of our collaboration. Apparently I said something about being interested in what he was doing, and he immediately pulled up a chair to talk about it. He admitted that he wanted the Affiliates to be called “Maryknoll” Affiliates, but that that could only happen if the new movement was collaborative within Maryknoll.

Thursday, 06 March 2014 00:00

Legends of Jim Madden

Written by

Mef Ford – Greater Boston/New England Chapter 

Stories were told at the wake of Jim’s humility, inspiration, and vision. One described his courage. Once, in Peru, armed local leaders confronted Jim in a public square, accusing him of being a spy, challenging his presence. “Why are you here? You don’t belong here,” they screamed. Jim walked right up to the group, stood tall before them and flipped their challenge saying, “It is YOU who don’t belong here. You have cheated and exploited the people. Why are YOU here?” The people then rose up and said, “He’s with us and we’re with him.” Confronted by this cool, daring young priest and his supporters, they backed down. A co-worker later asked Jim if he’d been scared. “Terrified,” he said. 

Monday, 03 March 2014 00:00

Fr. Jim Rekindles Mission Fire

Written by

Patrick & Mary Denevan - Mérida, Yucatán Chapter

Pat Denevan: I was 19 years old when I entered the Maryknoll Seminary in Mt. View, CA, to study Latin for one year. With a young heart burning with missionary zeal, I completed 8 more years of study and was ordained a Maryknoll priest in 1963. However, in 1970, after seeing the hopes of Pope John XXIII fading and the windows of the 2nd Vatican Council being closed, I decided to leave the priesthood. With a sad and confused heart, I left Maryknoll and was “reduced to the lay state,” according to the official document I received from Rome. 

Wednesday, 05 March 2014 00:00

Peruvians Celebrate Father Jim’s Life

Written by

Maria Farfan – Arequipa Chapter

[Translated by Bob Short]

You will always be with us, our dear Father Jim.

Our Mass in celebration of the life of Father Jim Madden was held in Arequipa, Peru, on January 16th, the day that Father Jim was waked [in New York]. Father Edmundo Alarcón, a friend of Father Jim, presided over the celebration. In attendance were Affiliates from the three chapters in Arequipa and some Affiliates from Puno, Peru. 

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