In May of 2009, I graduated from Franciscan University of Steubenville with a degree in Communication Arts with a concentration in Television/Radio. My time at Steubenville was filled with many graces and blessings, and it was there that my desire to do mission work began. Many students from Franciscan spend their breaks going on mission trips all over the world. My friends always returned with beautiful stories about the people they encountered and the love of Christ that they shared, and it was at this time that I started to pray and wonder if God was calling me to go on a mission trip. The summer after graduation I was blessed with the opportunity to visit a friend who was a missionary in Jamaica. This was an eye-opening experience in which my desire to serve others grew, and lead me to travel to Jamaica again for a mission trip the following summer.
Last summer, I spent two weeks in Jamaica preparing children for First Holy Communion. Many missionaries have remarked that they feel as if they receive more than they give when they are working as missionaries, and when I was in Jamaica, I often felt that I was the one being served. I also realized how spoiled I was in so many ways. The people that we worked with were only able to attend Mass every other Sunday, although many of them would go every day if they could. Back at home, I could choose from many different Mass times and had the ability to conveniently attend daily Mass. The people I worked with had to travel far to reach their church, while my parish is only minutes from my house, and has perpetual Eucharistic Adoration. I realized how much I was taking for granted, and I resolved to change the way I had been living my life, resolving to stay closer to Christ in the Eucharist.
Since my time in Jamaica last summer, I have tried to attend daily Mass and frequent Eucharistic adoration. One evening, after watching The Passion of Jesus Christ, followed by adoration, I felt called to look into long-term missionary work. Immediately upon returning home and beginning my online search, I found Heart’s Home. I couldn’t believe that such a mission existed. Heart’s Home is everything I was looking for, especially a simple way of life in which you show love to others and recognizing and restoring their human dignity. The whole mission surrounds the Eucharist, which I believe is essential.
It is the Eucharist that will give me the strength I need to carry on God’s mission. In October, I will be leaving for a fourteen month mission in El Salvador. There I will truly learn the meaning of the passage: “And now these three remain: faith, hope and love. But the greatest of these is love.” (1 Cor 13:13). I am thankful for all the love and support I have received and will continue to receive through this mission.
Thank you for your prayers and donations to this beautiful mission, and you will remain in my prayers.