Papua New Guinea – The universal call to the Mission

24 October 2019

(ANS - Rapolo) - The laity are those "faithful (who) are by baptism made one body with Christ... who... carry out for their own part the mission of the whole Christian people in the Church and in the world... They live in the century ... and are called there by God that by exercising their proper function and led by the spirit of the Gospel they may work for the sanctification of the world from within as a leaven. In this way they may make Christ known to others, especially by the testimony of a life resplendent in faith, hope and charity." (Lumen Gentium, n° 31). In this Extraordinary Missionary Month that is coming to an end, a testimony comes from Papua New Guinea of how necessary and how effective the missionary initiative of the laity can be.

The call to mission is for everyone, yes everyone!  In the Papua New Guinea and the Solomon Islands Vice Province, it is easy to think that missionaries are only the priests and religious in our lives. The Salesian priests guide us in our faith.  The religious brothers work with the youth and the sisters give their time and energy to spreading the Good News. Yet, we must not forget that the call to mission is for all. 

At Don Bosco Technical Secondary School, Rapolo, we are grateful for the efforts and commitment of lay people who serve in simple yet extraordinary ways. Every week lay volunteers dedicate their weekends to lead Catechism classes for the young children of the newly established parish.  On the other hand, this is an extremely sacred ministry for those who donate their time and talents. The children start their day praising their God at the Eucharistic celebration and continue to learn more about Him at the catechism class. 

The Salesian Co-operators share their talents and gifts in a very practical way.  Every Sunday, these amazing people go out to different communities and offer basic medical checkups of blood pressure and sugar levels for the people of the village. This helps the people create a ‘healthy plan of life’ so that they may live a long and healthy.

Still others are the laity who dedicate themselves to the accompaniment of young people in daily life, in classrooms and courtyards, offering children models and establishing with them that closeness and confidence that lead to an effective transmission of values ...

This is Mission! The love of Christ and neighbor drives the mission in our hearts to serve one another. We pray for all our missionaries, that they may be blessed and encouraged to continue their ministry. “Go out to all nations and proclaim the Good News,” Christ tells us. These people put the command of Christ into practice.  Our lives give you thanks and praise, O God!

Matthew Nguyen, a young American lay person, volunteer of the Salesian Lay Missioner program  



ANS - “Agenzia iNfo Salesiana” is a on-line almost daily publication, the communication agency of the Salesian Congregation enrolled in the Press Register of the Tibunal of Rome as n 153/2007.

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