Youth In Mission – Missionary Childhood Association

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In virtue of their baptism, all the members of the People of God have become Missionary DisciplesMt 28:19 All the baptized, whatever their position in the Church or their level of instruction in the faith, are agents of evangelization. Pope Francis, Evangelii gaudium, No. 120                      

Through membership in the Missionary Childhood Association [MCA], one of the Pontifical Mission Societies, children in the Archdiocese of Philadelphia and around the world learn about their baptismal responsibility to evangelize, grow in understanding of the lives of children their age in the developing world, and become active missionary disciples through their own witness, prayer and sacrifice.

The MCA mission animation offerings in the Archdiocese of Philadelphia include mission-oriented prayers, on-line and printed catechetical materials, and presentations and can be found easily by clicking your way through our website.

We Are Missionaries!

First heard at Baptism, the call to share our faith — to be Missionaries — is truly connected to every moment of every day. MCA offers young Catholics and their families opportunities to make those daily connections.

MCA Introduction and Stories PowerPoint for Catechists to share with Missionary Children

 

A Gift of Education in Indonesia

Santa Maria Kindergarten Jawa Timur, Indonesia, Diocese of Surabaya

Santa Maria Kindergarten
Jawa Timur, Indonesia, Diocese of Surabaya

Sister Elizabeth Lindawati, a Daughter of Charity of Saint Vincent De Paul, who runs the Santa Marta Kindergarten in Jawa Timur, Indonesia, with her Missionary Sisters, explains,

“There are many poor children who learn and are healthy because of Santa Maria Kindergarten. The economic conditions of their families are so poor that many of them arrive suffering from malnutrition. They cannot learn if they are weak. Most of them cannot pay the school fee.”

Seeing this great need the Sisters work to help make them healthier and pay their school fee so that they can learn well. They give them extra nutrition by giving them milk and/or healthy food five times a week and provide scholarships. The children as also members of the Missionary Childhood Association and participate with their prayers, sacrifices and acts of service. Although they have so very little they also donate during Lent and Advent to programs for the poor. They visit the poor, sick and old who live near the school and give out care packages to the poor in the streets. It is the spirit of God’s love and service which helps to deepen their faith.

Living Waters brought by Missionaries to Zambia

Child at well in Zambia

Child at well in Zambia

She comes to collect water – like almost half the population of Zambia who seek daily access to clean water. And she finds it here, so close also to the source of “living waters,” of all hope – Jesus Himself, present in the work and witness of priests and religious at St. Faustina’s parish in Lusaka, Zambia.

St. Faustina’s is just one of some 265 Catholic parishes serving the poor and marginalized here. The Church in Zambia’s outreach to children and families is found also in education – more than 100 nursery and elementary schools, 36 secondary schools, and nine special schools for children with disabilities – as well as health care – 15 hospitals, 38 health clinics and 10 hospice locations. In fact, the Catholic Church in Zambia is responsible for 60 percent of all health care in rural areas, and is in the forefront of responding to the HIV/AIDS pandemic that has greatly affected the country’s population.

Catholic Church in Lusaka, Zambia

Catholic Church in Lusaka, Zambia

It seemed everywhere you look in Zambia you can see your prayers and support up close and very personal. There is the missionary priest who built the parish church, with your prayers and sacrifices, to serve some 800, including that little girl at the well and her family. There is Sister Margaret who grew up dreaming about making miracles happen and is today a mother like no other for children struggling with disabilities. And too there is Sister Ruby and the girls at the Home of Joy who some would see as doubly cursed – both parents dead – but who you come to know are abundantly blessed through the loving care offered by house “mothers” like Helen Flaherty.

Home of Joy in Zambia

Home of Joy in Zambia

How blessed we are to support the Missionaries who lead them to that Source of all hope. Their story is our story as we celebrate once again the difference God makes.