• April 28, 2010

Maria V., Honduras 2008/2009

From Manassas, VA

For as long as I can remember, I knew I had wanted to serve and live among the poor in another part of the world. Through my time of for­ma­tion in New York, I found a com­mu­nity that spoke to my heart. A place where we were taught to love others not for what they can do, but simple because they are. Formation taught me that I was every­thing I needed to make a dif­fer­ence in this world through this time of mis­sion. My only goal was to love. And I knew I would do that whole heartily.

My time of mis­sion in Tegucigalpa, Honduras, was dif­fi­cult as I adjusted to so many dif­fer­ences. Our home in La Colonia Trinidad was simple, and I learned to wash clothes by hand, take cold showers, and eat the simple foods day after day, just like our neigh­bors. I strug­gled to learn Spanish, and repeat­edly felt that I was not able to live my mis­sion fully because I had no idea what was going on around me. Slowly, how­ever, I found myself more engaged in my mis­sion because of my strug­gles. So many of our neigh­bors were bit­terly poor. They strug­gled to get by with little edu­ca­tion and little oppor­tu­ni­ties. They worked as hard as they could, but were not able to change their cir­cum­stances. I was able to relate to them in ways I would not have expected. I too did not have a voice. I too was not able to change my cir­cum­stances. My sim­ple­ness allowed me to con­nect with them more closely than I could have imag­ined.

Coming home, I have found that so many people here in America are suf­fering from other forms of poverty. Loneliness. Poor self-esteem. Hopelessness. We may try to pre­tend that every­thing is all right, but on some level each of us is poor. I have found that my time with Heart’s Home has opened up my heart to see and respond to the hurt around me.

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