By Katie Infantine, Heart’s Home Alumni
“Over Memorial Day weekend while most of my friends and family were barbequing in the park or vacationing, I had the greatest gift of spending time at home – at Heart’s Home that is! I knew when I had decided to go on mission that I felt at home at Heart’s Home, but I was astonished once again by the sense of home that I felt upon returning to Brooklyn for the alumni weekend. I met up with eight other former missionaries, six from the US and two from Canada, and it seemed to me that after five minutes of talking with each alumni, I felt like I was talking with a family member. It was so clear that we shared the same Spirit and the same charism of compassion, and in belonging to Heart’s Home, we truly are a family in Christ.
What Sister Regina said at the end of the weekend rang so true to my heart and pretty much encapsulates my own experience of the alumni weekend. “To see the passion in everyone here is a confirmation of my own vocation. To see you with this same Spirit and this same charism of compassion in your hearts reassures me that it is not something I made up or imagined for myself but that this is a very real and total gift from God.” I, too, have been given this gift, this charism, this family by a Love which is outside myself, a Love to which I must respond daily.
Watching the four newest members of the Fraternity of Maximilian Kolbe make their commitments on Pentecost Sunday was a beautiful sign of this shared charism. The members told me that their commitment was really a recognition of what already was – the recognition of belonging to this family and knowing that it is through compassion and the imitation of Mary at the foot of the cross, in her total presence to the suffering of Jesus, that these men and women are called to be fully themselves and serve our Lord. I see these commitments and the whole alumni weekend as yet another testament to the need for friendship and communion. Just as we accompanied the friends in our neighborhoods on mission and just as the members of the Fraternity accompany each other, I am now accompanied by these former missionaries and have new hands to hold in order to carry on my new Heart’s Home mission in San Diego and go wherever the Lord may lead.”