Have you ever gone on a mission trip, short or long term?


#1

Or have you been thinking of doing a mission trip / volunteering some day? Either in your home country or abroad?

If you’ve done some mission work / volunteering, what did you do? Where? How long? Have a little story to tell about it or how it affected you??

Or if not, have you always wanted to go on some sort of mission or do some volunteer work in the future?

I have a place and religious order I would like to volunteer with, but might tell about it down thread.


#2

I did !:smiley:A long time ago when I was about 23 I travelled to Southen India and helped out teaching the postulants and novices English while living with that order of nuns.I was there for 5 months.
The next step of that trip I headed to Ethiopia and volunteered caring for the poor along side the Missionaries of Charity nuns for about 4 months.it was one of the most rewarding times of my life to be able give back.I helped to dress wounds ,feed those patients that were too weak to be able to do so themselves ,and helped serve meals and grew to know and care for many as friends.I was also able to pray for and comfort the dying alongside of the nuns.


#3

I’ll nudge this back up as I would really like to hear of other people’s experiences also :slightly_smiling_face:


#4

Also, please chime in, if you like, …those folks who are in an active mission or apostalate in your own backyard. Helping at the Catholic Charities soup kitchen and shelter or the St. Vincent de Paul thrift store, or some Pro-life ministry, etc.

Hope to hear from you. Thanks!


#5

I wish. It’s a bucket list item to do something like that.


#6

Well then, I hope you can get the opportunity sometime in the future. Do you have an idea or two of what you might like to do?


#7

Being a teacher, a mission trip involving teaching underpriviledged children seems perfect.


#8

I volunteered at a youth home in Mexico many moons ago. I wouldn’t trade the experience for anything but wish I could have done some things differently. Go with the right mentality, remembering that you’re there not to help others but to serve them.

P.S. Are you ready to tell us what order?? I’m itching with curiosity and would be happy to take this to P.M.


#9

Yes!! That would be great!

I almost did elementary teaching, but stopped short. Maybe I’ll be a para some day. I was mainly done, just had student teaching to go.

Oh, since you’re a teacher and it’s Christmas, I must share this short story with you…it’s a true story.


#10

What a sweet, precious story.


#11

Oh, well, one of the things or perhaps the only thing, not sure is that I"m going to Calcutta to volunteer with the Missionaries of Charity and help them serve the poorest of the poor in the distressing disguise of Jesus.


#12

I went when I was really young and arguably not mature enough. But rest assured, it matured me quickly. It was humbling. The work could be grueling and thankless, and my presence was not always welcome. But the experience enriched me in ways I could not have expected.

God bless you in your travels and mission!

:star_struck: :heart_eyes:


#13

One does not have to go far, for that matter, to be on or part of a mission. But I wanted to get farther out of my comfort zone than I have been in a while. Or ever.


#14

Ten or so years ago I was put into a situation by Our Dear Lord where I simply had to walk off the edge of a cliff and hope He would catch me. I did. It was the best decision of my life.

Comfort zones aren’t all they’re cracked up to be.


#15

The priest told it for part of his homily on Christmas Day. I had never heard it before. I really like kids. Maybe at an orphanage would be something I’m well suited for.


#16

Thanks, Blackforest for telling a bit about your time spent on mission. Could you elaborate on your experience as to your comments that it could be grueling, thankless, and how people did not appreciate your presence there. I think it would help me not be too surprised and more mentally prepared when I get the opportunity to go and serve my brothers and sisters in need.


#17

Have any of you all read the book “Toxic charity”? It details the ways that “charity tourists” possibly do more harm than good. For example, if we sent $$ to a poor area, who would be doing the construction work? Local people, and they would earn money. Why are rich tourists, essentially, taking work from locals in the name of Christianity? Long term organizations that are there for the long haul are different, I am talking about people who jet in and out for a week or so. Wouldn’t the airfare $$ just be better used to support existing charities there?


#18

First of all, I will second the book recommendation from @Loud-living-dogma

Toxic Charity is a great book and important to read because our charity has the power to build lives as well as destroy them. Fortunately, the Missionaries of Charity have a pretty good track record, but the book is nonetheless a good, quick, and important read.

Second, I have never been to India. But remember that to many people, your face represents a wealthy, imperialist nation that a lot of people in the world resent. Don’t take angry prejudices personally, if you encounter them, and respond with humility and grace.

Finally, one of the hardest things about the work can be the disorganization and ambiguity. I’m an Anglo girl, at heart, having traced the vast majority of my family tree back to the British Isles! It was hard to spend entire days without specific objectives or feeling like I was “wasting time” and “not getting anything done.” Staying there as long as you can will help mitigate that feeling, (I was only around for a summer), as will carrying around a good book, truckloads of patience, and your sense of humor to roll with these punches.

Again, however, these were my experiences, and I don’t know what to expect for you. You sound like you have more maturity than I did, and I wish you godspeed on your journey. :smiling_face_with_three_hearts:


#19

Yes, I know mission trips were a big thing when I was a teen. I never went, for medical reasons. But I wonder about some of the work done. It sounded like they had teens doing a lot of work that should have been done by professionals.


#20

Thankyou both for your insights. I shall try and read the book. It seems well worth the time.


DISCLAIMER: The views and opinions expressed in these forums do not necessarily reflect those of Catholic Answers. For official apologetics resources please visit www.catholic.com.