Sunday, September 28, 2014

“The Lord hears the cry of the poor”

“The Lord hears the cry of the poor”

Friday, September 26th
So today was pretty amazing, God really blessed me with an incredible insight into His love and into the humanity surrounding me. 

After a beautiful rosary at the basilica, confession with a Missionaries of Charity Father, God was preparing me for my favorite day thus far, as well as the hardest. Father sent us over to their soup kitchen were we arrived just as everyone was beginning to eat.  I got handed a baby that was 5 days old wrapped up so tightly in a blanket you could barely see his face.  He was there with his parents, 5 year old brother as well as his 8 year old sister.  They were currently homeless after being recently deported and weren’t able to eat any of the food served because they have eaten food from the states for so long they can’t take the Mexican spice.  It’s hard to see such a loving family be forced to leave a job and a home and have to try to raise a family with nothing. 

After the soup kitchen we headed to Villa Mujers, a home for women, usually older who have mental illness or have been abandoned by family members who no longer want to take care of them.  As we walked through, everyone was calling out and longing for us to show them attention, you could tell that all they wanted was love.  I knelt and said hola to one lady, and as she held my hand she started telling stories of her mama and papa and tear started streaming out her eyes.  It was one of those moments when you don’t know what to do but simply listen.  The rest of the time there we spent in the room where the really sick and dying were.  Two ladies were so excited to see Craig and just started telling him all these stories.  There was one lady that was curled up on the bed next to them, her body bent in weird unnatural positions and nothing but skin clinging to her bones.  Holding her hand and listening to her try to talk, but only be able scream was a moment when it took everything inside of me to hold back tears.   Life can be so hard to understand. 

Next we went to the rehab center and met the priest there. He was so full of love and showed us around.  Down stairs there were two boys who had just come off the streets, hooked to IVs. Our hope is that Sunday two of the street kids that we visit will come with us to the rehab center.  We went and saw them after leaving and they were so full of love for Craig as he walked up and just excited to see us.  I got drilled for about 10 minutes about whether or not I had a boyfriend and how tall he was and if they could fight him.  They are always entertaining to talk to and try to understand.

Pray that the boys stay committed to going to rehab today.  The whole process is a lot harder than most people think.  When you have been on drugs for so long your body doesn’t know how to function without them.  The first three days of rehab will most likely be spend throwing up and hooked on an IV to make sure that the body stabilizes.  Only through Christ will any of us be able to let go of our addictions big or small and be able to live in in the freedom we were designed for. 

Saturday, I was blessed to get to spend time at the Missionaries of Charity here in Mexico.  They also have a home for women with disabilities who are sick and dying or have been abandoned by their families.  Upstairs is where we spent most of our time, with the babies.  There were about 10 of them who were being fed and cared for, most of whom had disabilities; either mental or physical, and all of whom had been abandoned by their families and left on the side of the road.  It was such a joy to hold them and get to walk them around the garden outside.  Holding Jaime felt so different than a normal child because of his tense body and inability to relax like most children would.  He had a constant smile on his face and a look of awe and wonder at everything we looked at.  Some of the girls who are in their first few years of preparing to be MCs and consecrate their lives to Christ forever were from the US so it was fun to talk and joke with them and see the love in their eyes for the work they are doing.  May God bless their ministry and all those that see the love of Christ through the love that the sisters show to them. 

Remember, if we love those in front of us, no one will ever go unloved.  

Saturday, September 27, 2014

Medical Mission

Warning: thoughts in this post skip around and don't make much sense 

Who would have thought, God has a way of pulling through when I am being a chicken.  Don’t ask me why, but I have come to hate making phone calls, especially to people I don’t know.  A week ago a college priest approached Elizabeth and I about going on a medical mission trip with his students.  I was really excited until four days later I was supposed to call the girl in charge and let her know we were coming.  Why did I not want to make the call, who knows?  Basically I took the approach, “okay, Lord, if you want me to go, make it happen.”  Thursday I get a Facebook message asking if we wanted to go, and Friday afternoon we were getting on a bus with 30 unknown college students headed to the mountains. 

The purpose for traveling to the mountains was to go to villages where there is no medical service and let everyone know that we would be having free medical clinics.  It was also supposed to be an opportunity for the college students to encounter a deeper relationship with Jesus as well as to remember the passion that goes into medical practice.  I really appreciate the purpose of the trip and what I got out of it, but it also really made me appreciate FOCUS mission trips and the emphasis they place on quiet prayer time as well as going into detail of the joy that comes from being in a relationship with God. 

What I have really started to realize is that Mexico is quite similar to the United States in that the people here are often unable to fully grasp the concept of God’s Mercy.  Many are just unaware that God loves them no matter what they have done, and only wants for them to accept His Mercy and forgiveness.  Anyways, it was a great experience, I made some friends, and I have no focus to write this blog.  I am sitting in a coffee house that looks like it belongs in West O.  I spent the last day in my apartment staring at my computer trying to learn Spanish and started a new bible study.  I learned I can’t sit still for a whole day at a time, surprise surprise. 

(I should say however, the online Bible study is amazing and anyone interested in learning more about their faith should check out  It is free and you can do it whenever you have a little free time.)

Blogs looked at instead of finishing this post

“Do not fear sharing the Truth; the Truth can take care of itself.   Our task is to ask questions, pursue the Truth, and then simply unleash it.  It’s quite elementary.”

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Why Mexico City?

 I have now been in Mexico City a little over a week, and I am sure many are wondering why.  For anyone who knew me in high school, they knew I was ardently opposed to Spanish.  I took two years, hated it (mainly because of a teacher), and swore I was never going to need it and therefore deleted it from my brain.  That’s why even I have a hard time believing that I am actually here.  I don’t think it even really hit me that I was in Mexico until the other night when I was sitting in my neighbor’s house, eating a meal I can’t pronounce, and listening to a conversation where I understand only 1/500 words. As I looked around it sunk it, I am in a two room house in the middle of the largest city in the world, but I feel at home. 

How did I get here?
After my first international mission trip to Haiti, I felt my heart being pulled towards foreign mission work and then after India last summer I had no doubt.  So while other people were applying for normal jobs, I was searching the internet for organizations that would allow me to serve in an unknown land.

It was mid-December and I was still trying to decide.  Looking back it must have been December 13th, since the day before was the feast of Our Lady of Guadalupe.  I hadn’t heard her story in a while and someone had mentioned it to me the day before and it caught my attention. For those of you who don’t know: After the Spanish had taken over Mexico, they were trying to spread Christianity anhere 
d put to the polytheistic and human sacrificing religion, but in eleven years, only a few hundred had converted.  Well in 1531 a man was walking by Tepeyac Hill and a woman appeared to him claiming to be the Mother of Christ.  She asked him to talk to the Bishop and tell him she would like a church build on this hill so that the Mexican’s could learn the love of her Son and feel her protection.  Well when he went to the Bishop, the Bishop didn’t believe him and asked for a sign.  Our Lady told him to gather roses (in winter) which she rearranged in his tilma (a cloth worn), and as he let them fall in front of the Bishop, there appeared a beautiful image of a woman, otherwise known as Our Lady of Guadalupe.  This image is in the Basilica in Mexico City and has been studied by scientists over the years who have no explanation to many aspects of the image or how it has lasted over 500 years. Within nine years after the appearance, over 9 million Mexicans had converted to Christianity.  To find out more click

Anyways, as I was telling a friend this miracle who didn’t know much about Mary, he just kind of stared at me and asked to see a picture.  As I showed it to him his eyes got big and he said that half an hour before when we were at a thrift store he had seen a few statues of the image.  At first it just seemed to be a coincidence.  Well the next day I was telling a FOCUS missionary about the previous day’s events and she perked up and asked if I had considered Mexico as a place to do mission work.  Mexico was the last place I thought of, it wasn’t even on my radar.  But she started telling me about another missionary who had a friend, Craig, who has lived in Mexico the last 8 years as a missionary and had connections to a home for women and children; an area I have always had an interest in.  Just at that moment the other missionary who knew Craig walked out of his office.  Long story short, I got in contact and from there it was a quick process to finalizing my move.  God even answered prayers and opened the heart of another college student from MO to go down with me for a while, who speaks every good Spanish; easing the nerves of my parents who feared I would be wondering the streets of Mexico alone. 

Whenever I got nervous about leaving, whether in a friend’s house or in a church, there was about a 95% chance that a few seconds later I would see an image of Our Lady of Guadalupe reassuring me that this was where God was calling me.  He continues to impress me as He slowly reveals new plans He has for me while I am here.  A few months before I left I heard of all the FOCUS mission trips that were coming to Mexico that I could help with, causing me to laugh because God was answering another prayer that I had prayed two years ago, but didn’t trust would ever be answered.  He is constantly full of surprises.

This past week has reminded me that as long as my heart is aimed towards Christ, God will make His desires for my life quite clear; and let’s face it, His plans are way better than our own.  We just have to be patient and listen. 

Dios te ama