Your Legacy as a Missioner
“We will hold Your people in our hearts.”
~ Maryknoll Lay Missioners, Class of 2010
It takes a spacious heart to be a missioner. As a Returned Missioner, you know why.
You left behind loved ones and everything else about home that was dear and familiar. You underwent a lengthy and sometimes stressful application process and discernment period. You likely had to learn a new language. You worked hard under sketchy conditions with scant resources, and you had to recalibrate your definition of “success.”
Not for a moment do you cease to hold in your heart the people among whom you lived and served overseas.
When you went into overseas mission, you not only embraced a transition to a new and foreign culture, but also immersion in the harsh realities that the poorest people within that culture continue to face each day.
“We will hold Your people in our hearts”* might aptly be the anthem of Returned MKLM Missioners. You have come back from overseas to pursue a new life and ministry in the United States. But never – not for a moment – do you cease to hold in your heart the people among whom you lived and served overseas.
Their names and faces, their faith and resourcefulness, their tears and laughter, live on in your spacious heart, inspiring your compassion – and your compassion continues to transform lives. That is your legacy as a Returned Missioner.
Your legacy as a Missioner is the ongoing mission of MKLM: transforming lives with compassion rooted in faith. Below are some practical ways for you to help carry on that legacy.
MKLM needs a steady stream of new missioners in order to keep our Regions healthy and viable. To do this, we depend up your help. Our most valuable resource for attracting qualified applicants is our growing network of Returned Missioners.
Each year, we have applicants who reference a personal connection that has drawn them to MKLM. As a Returned Missioner, you are often that connection! And you can help us to identify tomorrow’s missioners. Here’s how:
- Refer a family member, friend, colleague, or fellow parishioner.
- Staff a table at college and university career fairs in your area.
- Volunteer to do a church date for MKLM.
- Help out with an MKLM recruitment or vocational discernment event.
Friends Across Borders
As a Returned Missioner, you are uniquely qualified to accompany a group on a Mission Immersion trip to the country where you served in mission. All travel expenses of the “first guide” for each trip are covered by MKLM; for “second guides,” in-country expenses are covered. If you are interested in being a guide, or if you would like to organize a mission immersion trip for your faith community, Cecilia Espinoza will be delighted to work with you; you can contact her at firstname.lastname@example.org.
As a Returned Missioner, you have stories to share and an understanding of realities in the countries where our missioners serve. Why not share your stories and insights at a parish in your diocese? Church talks are an effective (and fun!) way to spread the word about MKLM. We will work with you to prepare your talk and make arrangements with your parish or diocese.
If public speaking isn’t your cup of tea, we can help you organize a church date for another Returned Missioner – or even a current missioner who happens to be back in the States on a visit.
Our U.S. Church Relations Manager receives requests for mission education speakers from dioceses, parishes, and other organizations. Returned Missioners are especially in demand! If you are interested in promoting mission education and would like more information on being a speaker, please contact Alicia Butkiewicz at MissionOutreach@mklm.org.
Donate to MKLM
As a Maryknoll Lay Missioner, you responded to cries of the poor with your gifts, skills, and all the love in your spacious heart.
Holding God’s people in your heart is not without risks; those guests of your heart can create a stir. Their sorrows can make your heart heavy; their cries clamor for your response; their courage and vulnerability call forth your love, even now.
How will your own spacious heart respond to God’s people in need? Will you continue to participate in our ministries serving Christ’s poor with your financial contribution to Maryknoll Lay Missioners?
Every missioner can attest to this mystery of divine grace: When you hold God’s people in your heart, you find yourself with a heightened awareness of being held, with great tenderness, in the heart of God.
Each of us is called by the Heart that holds together within it our own deepest hopes and the dreams of the poor. Thank you for prayerfully considering your legacy as a missioner by making a donation to MKLM!
*Adapted from the song, “Here I Am Lord” © 1981, Daniel L. Schutte and North American Liturgy Resource.