On 23 October, World Mission Sunday will be celebrated in every Catholic community throughout the world. Coordinated by Missio, it is a moment of grace to express solidarity with our brothers and sisters in Christ. Especially those who are living in situations of poverty, violence, and oppression.
With the encouragement of the Holy Father, every parish, school and community throughout the world are invited to join this special celebration. And every penny, pound, and prayer you give to Missio helps missionaries continue their work in every part of the world.
<Watch the official international World Mission Sunday 2022 film: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Pt_lZVX6dpc>
This year, Missio in England and Wales is focusing on the work of lay missionary – Maria – at the Kidist Mariam Centre (or ‘Blessed Mary Centre’) in Meki, Ethiopia. This holistic Centre is supported by the international Missio network and offers a safe, supportive environment for vulnerable people to receive skills training.
Ethiopia is perhaps a country most well-known for the suffering it has experienced through intense famine and desperate poverty. Amongst these ongoing challenges, missionaries like Maria, are bringing communities together to build hope for a better future.
Beth* (name changed to protect her identity) has seen her life dramatically change through her involvement with the Centre.
<Watch this short film and hear from Beth in Ethiopia: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=T7tkThdsY >
Unable to find employment locally, she had travelled overseas and became a domestic worker to help support her family living in Meki. Sadly, her employees abused and exploited her. Beth shares that she became ‘mentally unwell’ and so, returned to her homeland.
At the time, she was being supported by a friend who introduced her to a local Catholic priest. He encouraged Beth to seek assistance through the Kidist Mariam Centre. Beth was originally employed to work as a cleaner, to help support her family, but developed an interest in the food preparation course.
Beth shares: ‘I think that without this Centre, we would be out on the street. Because there was no alternative… It is a Centre where you can have confidence, eat, and rest… It allows you to have confidence in yourself. And if people come to this Centre, there will be a change.’
Throughout her darkest moments, Beth’s faith has been a beacon. And in sharing her faith, witnessing to her experiences of Christ’s mercy and healing, Beth is helping others at the Centre. She says:
‘I believe that God is always before you and behind you in all your troubles… He is prominent for a person like me, who has fallen in life. He is my life. God is my life and my everything.’
The care and support Beth is receiving at the Centre would not be possible without the faithful support of people like you, through the international Missio network. She wanted to share:
‘Every human being faces trials. In our time of trouble, particularly in relation to my problems, you have reached out to me. This approach is good, particularly towards developing countries, particularly for us, as only those who have been through such a trauma can understand. May God make you prosper, may you be measured by the measure you have given… Thank you. God bless you’.
The Centre has seen nearly 3,000 people complete their training and build brighter futures for themselves. This, in turn, benefits their families and their local community because men and women do not have to risk going overseas to seek work. With your help, the Centre can continue to provide people with the vital training they need to sustain an income through their skill.
This World Mission Sunday you have the chance to support missionaries who work alongside some of the most vulnerable communities in our society. Your generosity and prayers on World Mission Sunday mean that together with them, we can keep loving, serving and sharing God’s hope with others.
Missio empowers the Catholic Church globally, showing the love of Christ to everyone, and especially to those in greatest need. Your donations keep health clinics and schools open, train tomorrow’s generation of Priests and Sisters, and create a vibrant Catholic Church for the future.
You can find short films through the below links:
- (4:32) Maria at the Kidist Mariam Centre: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RAgrOtaZoiQ
- (6:00) Beth’s hope-filled journey: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=T7tkThdsY
- (2:34) Official international World Mission Sunday 2022 film: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Pt_lZVX6dpc