The Missions: San Francisco and San José

Unless the mission is oriented by charity, that is, unless it springs from a profound act of divine love, it risks being reduced to mere philanthropic and social activity...Consequently, being missionaries means loving God with all one's heart, even to the point, if necessary, of dying for him. - Pope Benedict XVI

i've been promising a pic of the side garden for a while. here is anardo doing a little cleaning. these bananas are not sold anywhere in america (as far as i know). they have a sweet, yet slightly citrus-like taste to them. they should be ready in the next couple of weeks. afterwards, the shoot that has the bananas is cut down, and one of the offshoots will then produce. so, each shoot produces one time and is cut down. meanwhile, new shoots spring up and the cycle continues:

it's now official: for as long as anyone can remember, because of the sunday morning market there has only been an evening sunday Mass here in banica. however, we have finally found a way to have a morning Mass without too much trouble: starting next weekend we will celebrate a vigil Mass at 6pm sat night and a 7am Mass on sunday morning. the news, which wasn't a suprise to most in the congregation since word had been "leaked" over the last few weeks, was greeted with applause and joy.

also, saturday began the nine day preparation for the feast of St. Francis, complete with a 3.5 hour procession and Mass here in the church. i'll try and post some pics later.

well, things here in banica are interesting:

to wit - the local public school teachers have been on strike for 8 out of 11 days because of the politically influenced appointments of the new teachers, i.e. the teachers for the reigning political party are getting the good jobs and the ones from the other political parties are getting the shaft. at least enrollment is up at san francisco javier!

we haven't had water in the pipes for 2 months. they brought in the new pump, plugged it in, and promptly burned it out, so we're waiting on another pump.

fr murphy and i traveled to thomassique, haiti today to check on the new clinic that medical missionaries is building and he hit a bit of mud:

it hasn't rained in a week. this morning a man told me, "the moon was full of water last night, it's gonna rain today." it's now raining...

thank you to all who have supported the construction of this beautiful school complex. we are finally finished (except for the planned mural on the side wall, and the safety rails on the new section of the second floor...) and school began today. we have 135 kids registered, which is 40 more than the public school, which has caused a little grumbling.

vacation is over.

we now have a military transport vehicle, a school bus, and a tractor. i'll take some pictures as soon as i unpack my camera. the tractor's fuel pump broke. so, the thing sits in the middle of a half-plowed field waiting for the new pump to arrive from the capital.

construction on the school has finally been completed, and it looks great. picture on the way.

i have alot to write but really nothing to say except that, as with any parish, activities crank up in september, and with two parishes, well, there is plenty to keep us occupied. more later as we get things organized.

but, i'm back alive and had a wonderful time visiting my family.


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