Delightful surprises during mission appeal

Evelyn Sabate with the old woman selling brooms. Photo: Evelyn Sabate

Evelyn Sabate with the older woman selling brooms. Photo: Evelyn Sabate

Doing the Columban mission appeal always leads to delightful surprises. One such moment unfolded during a beautiful Sunday morning at St. William the Hermit Cathedral in San Fernando, La UnionOnce we arrived at the entrance of the cathedral, we set up our mission booth showcasing our Columban newsletters, books, Columban Mission magazines and vocation materials. Near our booth and right at the Church's entrance was an older woman in her ninetiesselling brooms.

After the communion, I went up to the podium and spoke about the Columban Missionaries and our call for donationsI explained that all donations would go to the Formation Funds that support the education of the Columban seminarians. After my talk, the woman who was selling brooms approached and embraced me. With heartfelt sincerity, she said, "I may not have money to give, but please accept these two brooms as my offering for the mission."

That moment reminded me of the story in the Holy Bible about the widow's mite in the templeJesus was watching the people put money in the temple box and saw that the rich people gave from their excess while the poor widow gave everything she had. That old woman selling brooms has all the good intentions of helping the mission, and I am so grateful for her tremendous generosity.

Mission Partners in Negros are happy to reconnect and see the changing faces of the Columbans. Photo: Evelyn Sabate

Mission Partners in Negros are happy to reconnect and see the changing faces of the Columbans. Photo: Evelyn Sabate

The next delightful surprise happened in Negros Occidental during the re-launch of the Columban Mission Partner's program in the Columban's old central house in Batang, Diocese of KabankalanThe attendees, mostly elderly, were happy to be part of the Columban initiative to support the education of the Columban seminariansThey were thrilled to meet the group of seminarians from Fiji and Myanmar who are doing their First Mission Assignment (FMAin Mindanao. In contrast to the towering figures and white faces of the past, these new faces of Columban members are of diverse backgrounds. 

Evelyn Sabate is the Mission Animator for Luzon in the Phillippines

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Comments (1)

  1. John Higgins:
    Sep 14, 2023 at 05:36 PM

    Reminded me of the Widow’s mite too. Greater than all the other donations. God bless her.


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