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 celebrated my 11th anniversary as a priest with a few firsts. I trekked into Layamaya solo. This is a village reachable with 3 ½ hours mule ride after a 40 minute motorcycle ride. I don’t think there are many folks using the internet who do such things for a living. Along with my anniversary, I am celebrating that the village was in great attendance at the Mass. They will now be in my regular monthly line up. There, I had the unique experience to drink fresh milk from a cow that morning. It’s hard to believe that a grandson of a dairyman would never have had such an experience till the age of 38. What might even be more unbelievable to you is that this is not a regular occurrence here. Interestingly, it is a rare opportunity. There aren’t many dairy cows and the people seem content with powdered milk. It certainly is easier to transport, store and keep from spoiling. Nevertheless, these were some enjoyable firsts for my first and tenth.


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