Today was our first day at our mission sites. It sounds like the groups all had a healthy combination of challenges/sufferings and joy. One thing is certain, God is here and He is working!
This evening, we had an outing to Washington Park (just across the street from Music Hall). It is a beautiful park and there were tons of people hanging out, playing sports and enjoying the fountains. I've got some pictures below.
Later this evening, we heard a talk from a missionary priest from Uganda - Fr. Ruffino of the Comboni Missionaries. He talked about Moses and God's calling him to reach out to Israel - because of God's desire to be merciful. He reminded us that the world is also thirsting and hurting right now, and that it is up to us to share God's love with the world, along with hope in Christ. Amongst many other wise things, he shared stories of meeting JPII and Mother Teresa, and called us to live a missionary life this week that is rooted in prayer.
After Father's talk, we heard some testimonies from the teens. Many stories related seemingly small and insignificant experiences that had tremendous impact when seen with the eyes of God. Stories like holding hands with kids in OTR, watching a woman bring her newborn baby into Pregnancy Center East, speaking to people who were mute with any means possible, and even picking up sticks and pulling weeds.