mission

HERE I AM, SEND ME

Sister Reena and the Community of Seva Missionary Sisters of Mary are from India. They share their joy in receiving donations from St. Bartholomew Parish, Trempealeau toward the purchase of their new mode of transportation in Tanzania.

My dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ, may the Lord give you peace. On Oct. 18, 2020, World Mission Sunday will be held in Catholic parishes and communities around the world, the annual celebration of our shared call to mission. The day offers praise through the Eucharistic sacrifice of Christ for all humanity.

It also rejoices in the unity we share across boundaries of race, nation
and language. Two gifts we desperately need are indeed praise and unity.

Encouraging our work in the world as a source of hope, Pope Francis gives us the theme for World Mission Sunday 2020, “In this year marked by the suffering and challenges created by the Covid-19 pandemic, the missionary journey of the whole Church continues in light of the words found in the account of the calling of the prophet Isaiah: ‘Here am I, send me’ (6:8). This is the ever new response to the Lord’s question: ‘Whom shall I send?’”

“Here I am, send me” is the answer given to God’s call by two men named Joseph; both are particularly important for the Diocese of La Crosse. First and foremost, we turn to St. Joseph the Workman, for whom our cathedral is named.

The Year of St. Joseph (May 1, 2020 – May 1, 2021) honors the 150th anniversary year of Blessed Pius IX’s decree naming him Patron and Protector of the Universal Church. Turning to the saint whom God chose to provide a home for His Son, we find a model in our obedience to God and care for each other.

The second Joseph we continue to raise to God in the cause of his sanctity and sainthood. Servant of God, Father Joseph Walijewski and his indefatigable missionary spirit continue to inspire our mission today.

With St. Joseph and Father Joseph as examples, your own annual generosity on World Mission Sunday fortifies missionaries around the world to serve the poorest and otherwise forgotten within our human family. Your gift offers priests, religious and lay leaders in more than 1,100 mission territories resources to build the Church and serve humanity in areas limited by poverty.

I share my personal gratitude for your generous response on Oct. 18, 2020, as you are able. Together, let us pray: “St. Joseph, Model of Workers and Comfort of the Afflicted, pray for us.”

God bless your praise and unity with His joy and peace.

By BISHOP WILLIAM PATRICK CALLAHAN, Bishop of La Crosse
Published September/October 2020 Catholic Life issue

For more details, please visit: diolc.org/missions

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