On December 13th, Marylouise, an American volunteer from Wisconsin, arrived in Vienna for the starting of a new mission house. She gives us her first impressions of her mission in Austria:
We have only been living in Vienna for one month. Our beginner’s German betrays our newness to the city, but in virtue of all the blessings and friendships the Lord has already showered upon us, it feels as though we have been here already one year.
Alina, who hails from the Ukraine, and I are currently living with Monika (a Austrian native and a former Heart’s Home missionary to Naples) in her apartment. The apartment for the new Offenez Herz (the German name for Heart’s Home) is not quite ready for us as it is in need of some renovations in the kitchen and bathroom, as well as furniture, and other necessary amenities. And so we wait for God’s timing.
Yet, the lack of the physical ‘home’ of the new Heart’s Home has not kept the Holy Spirit from leading us to places in which the ‘heart’ of Heart’s Home…our hearts…Christ’s heart…is desperately in need. We have met many of the people begging on the street for their daily bread as we walk to mass and adoration in Stephansdom everyday. We have spent afternoons with Austrian families and Ethiopian families alike, with children who need playmates, with mother’s both married and single who need companionship. We have spent evenings with students in coffee shops and pizza parlors, getting to know our peers and the youth of the city, talking about the daily happenings of life, and sometimes getting to delve deeper into their lives, their dreams, struggles, and what faith and compassion mean to this future generation of Vienna. The Holy Spirit has lead us many places, many unexpected places, constantly surprising us with the new miracles He has in store at every turn.