[su_dropcap style=”flat”]I[/su_dropcap] WOULD NEVER push my faith or views on someone else, but if you ask for my opinion, I’ll give it, and if I feel compelled to share a view, I have that right to do so, but the key to doing this eloquently is how one goes about it. It should be with HUMILITY, (what is humility)? Recognition of self in relation to a God, or gods, acceptance of one’s defect, a submission to divine grace.
I learned this very well when I became a Lay Missionary of Charity, a beautiful order of Bl. Mother Teresa, and (I don’t know anyone in my lifetime and current) who does not know whom this woman was. Soon to be declared a Saint, and deservingly so, small, petite mighty in faith who served the poor, the destitute, the hungry, the sick and the dying, tirelessly. She was certainly the definition of true HUMILITY.
As a Lay Missionary of Charity which was started when Bl. Mother Teresa was alive, a Movement within the Catholic Church founded in the Charism of the Missionaries’ of Charity, (Bl. Mother Teresa’s Religious Order) dedicated to a life of growth in holiness, especially within our own families, and to live as contemplatives in the heart of the world, serving where we live, especially the poorest of the poor. It began in Rome, in 1984, along with Fr. Sebastian, with 4 lay people who wanted to live a life of greater holiness and union with God, a greater affiliation to the life and work of Mother Teresa’s Religious Order. These 4 people were just like you and I, except they had a desire to serve and help Bl. Mother Teresa’s Order.
Located in over 50 countries, with 379 professed Lay Missionaries’ of Charity in the United States, and 71 aspirants that gather in various cities, consisting of 72 groups in 37 states in the U.S.
Now I will bring it more into my world here in Houston. Houston is the number one corridor for Human Trafficking sad, but true. The Sister’s assigned here are 4 of the most beautiful souls, and we gather with these sister’s twice a month, we, are a prayer group, which consist of 10-14 woman, some single, some married, some widowed, varying in age and of course we also have men, but not as many.
We meet on two Saturday’s a month, early in the morning for Holy Mass, we have Adoration, (Exposition of the Blessed Sacrament), Liturgy of the hours and we say the rosary together; after which, we meet and discuss the needs of the sister’s within the community they serve. We go over Bl. Mother Teresa’s Statues, and together we pray for the needs of the world, our families, those whom have asked us to pray for them, and so much more. That includes anyone reading this post.
The Missionaries of Charity are Sister’s in groups of four. They provide for the poorest in their community, they go and visit the sick; they provide for the children within the community who are hungry and who seek to know God.
I will wake early on a Saturday morning, and drive into downtown Houston, while it is still dark, arriving at the motherhouse just before dawn. The street is narrow, and many of the buildings I pass are run down. The local bars are still active, and as I turn onto the street to park, it’s hopeful that I will find a close enough spot to park so I don’t have far to walk. I trust in God, and think how easy it is to forget myself for the next few hours where I will be deep in prayer. No one seems to bother the cars, or those of us who pull up in front of the Mother House, They know who the Sister’s are and in a sense, I think they are respected and appreciated for being there.
Each of us in the prayer group share what’s on our hearts, often it is what is happening in the world, praying for many, especially those innocent souls who are martyred for their faith. We pray for our children, our grandchildren, family members who are struggling, souls that have passed which we knew, the young innocent souls who are victims of human trafficking, and yes, we prayer for strangers we have never meet. So much we pray for.
When we are done, we hug each other, say goodbye to the sisters, if they don’t have a job for us to do, such as cleaning, or passing out food baskets, distributing clothes.
We have a two-year formation to take vows, not vows to join the religious order of Bl. Mother Teresa, but vows to live as she lived and her sister’s live according to their state in life as a Lay Group. For the married woman or man it s attending to their family. For the single, it’s living a life of chastity according to their state.
Bl. Mother Teresa said the greatest poverty is not on the streets, but rather within our own home. Do we abandon our own? Look the other way, not provide for our own family members? It happens everyday.
Yes, HUMILITY is Recognition of self in relation to God, accepting our defects and our submission to divine grace. Not an easy feat, and it requires discipline because let’s face it, this world and those in it do not make it easy. As a Lay Missionary of Charity we hope our prayers for all, somehow relieve their burdens.