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October 13, 1995     The Message
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October 13, 1995
 

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'THE WRONG HOUSE' A look at vocations in the Missions 't all began when Albert went . to the wrong house. Albert Atching, a young man in northern Cameroon, was sent on an errand by his mother to a nearby village. But in that vil- lage, two Women shared the Same name. While in school, Albert met a missionary Sister who told him the story of St. Vincent de Paul. "So a poor man could become a priest!" Albert thought. In fu- ture years, Albert was baptized and entered the seminary in Cameroon. His semi- nary is one of 295 mis- sion major seminaries where the students are supported with help through the Propaga- tion of the Faith/St. Pe- ter Apostle. (Above) Seminarian in South America. Last year, of the 1,548 ordinations, 248 were in the Americas. (Below) In India, local Religious Sister teaches; last year, of the 8,700 Religious novices in the Missions, some 5,100 were in Asia. Albert Went to the wrong house. The Woman in the "Wrorl ho- ', , use was a Chris- an; she was kind to Albert, helping him anyway. ,'ot long after, the a wrnan passed through "'Oert's villa,*e ,-, ,,.u be 6. Lecauln   meeting with him, she tt,lcl Albert's mother, "Your son Will one day be a Priest.,, "I heard those words and It Was a shock to me," Albert Says now "Iwa- - u s not even .uaptized! Ikept thosewords rhy heart for years." ocations to the priesthood in the Missions have been increasing steadily. In 1990, there were 22,300 major seminarians; last year, there were 25,498. Dur- ing 1994, 7,064 young men began their studies for the priesthood. In 1994, there were 1,548 priests or- dained in the Mis- sions; in the past YUr gift on World Mission Sunday... $I5"$25 helps to support a Catechist for a ntonth $100 helps a villa, ". With eha,, . ge tmssion, .v- e' SChool and health services -o is - " u month's help for a Religious . ttOVtee or a mtsston seminarian five years, more than 8,000 young men have been ordained from mission seminaries. Last year, 11 major seminar- ies received first-time help: five in Africa, four in the Americas, and two in Asia. O A MESSAGE FROM THE NATIONAL DIRECTOR OF THE PROPAGATION OF THE FAITH ii WORLD MISSION SUNDAY: ALL OF US TOGETHER, UNITED IN CHRIST his past spring, I traveled to Rome for meetings about the Propagation of the Faith which were attended by Church lead- ers fromaround the world. The new Cardinal-arch- bishopof Hanoi described the progress and difficulties for the Church in his country. Bishops from Africa spoke of the terrible suffering of their people in many areas of that great continent. Perhaps most impressive of all was listening to Cardinal Vinko Puljic, the young archbishop of Sarajevo, Bosnia. As we well know, the citizens of Bosnia have seen much death and devastation; all the more in recent months. The war there has taken its toll on the Church, as well. Banja-Luka, one of the three dioceses of of Bosnia supported by the Propagation of the Faith (Sarajevo and Mostar are the oth- ers), has been most hard hit: some 60 churches have been destroyed; priests and Religious have been killed; many Catholics have been forced out of the country or taken from their homes to places un- known; missionaries have been expelled. A Church worker in nearby Croatia observed: "Faith is really all the people have left." ardinal Puljic spoke of his journey to the spring meet- ings in Rome. Because the air- port in Sarajevo was closed, he was forced to depart on foot, tak- ing with him only what he could carry on his back and walking under cover of darkness for many hours to the outskirts of the city where someone met. him with a car. From there, he began the long, dangerous journey through the mountains, on the now-infa- mous winding road to Zagreb, a road which recently took the lives of three U.S. diplomats on a mis- sion of peace. From Zagreb, he continued on to Rome. It was a humbling experience for me to listen to Cardinal Puljic and the other mission bishops who, together with their priests and people, are truly experienc- hag the Passion of our Lord. Mind- ful that we are one with them in the Mystical Body of Christ, it brought home to me with ever greater urgency the need for all of us to be actively involved in encouraging and strengthening our brothers and sisters in faith throughout the world. orld Mission Sunday pre- sents a unique opportu- nity for us to do just that. On October 22, through the Propaga- tion of the Faith, you can reach out with your prayers, personal sacri- fices and financial assistance to help bring the suffering poor of the Missions the Good News of hope and new life in Jesus Christ. During my time in Rome, I had the privilege of seeing our Holy- Father who asked me to convey to each of you his own prayerful gratitude for your sup- port of your brothers and sisters in the Missions through the Propagation of the Faith. Please be assured of my own prayers for you and your intentions as well, especially as I offer the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass on World Mission Sunday. Bishop William I. McCormack Vo.r on World Mission Sunday helps... ,[ the Church as it serves the poor in Africa, Asia, the Pacific Islands and remote rL\\;e, ions of Latin America through the Propagation of the Faith ,[ mission areas in the United States through the American Board of Catholic Missions / the missions of the Middle East through the Catholic Near East Welfare Association