Lima, 08/05/14, (Sodalit News – Peru). Members and friends of the Christian Life Movement in Canada, working together with “Solidarity in Action,” led a mission trip to Peru in order to bring aid to a much needed area of Lima. The missionaries were also able to meet and share with people of various associations of the Sodalit Family.
Inspired by the message of World Youth Day, Rio 2013 – in which members of the Christian Life Movement (CLM) in Canada participated – these missionaries embarked on what for some was their second mission trip to Peru. After a nice experience of missions in Peru before going to Brazil, a few decided to organize a new mission trip to Peru the following year, and they invited students from various universities. They were accompanied both physically and spiritually by Fr. Bill of the Diocese of St. Catharines.
The work and efforts of these missions were mainly oriented towards the community of “Las Rocas,” located in the area of Pamplona, on the outskirts of Lima’s shanty-towns. The assistance provided there consisted of the construction of a long staircase, which will provide easier access to the community. The generous support of these missionaries also included gestures of solidarity through the emotional and spiritual support that they offered in the days they spent visiting homes to pray with families. They also had the opportunity to celebrate a daily Mass, dedicated especially for residents of the community.
This mission trip was also an opportunity to grow in knowledge and formation in the Sodalit spirituality, through different talks on vocational discernment, the history of the Sodalit Family, an explanation of the CLM, as well as a talk on poverty. These talks were offered by members of the various associations of the spiritual family. The missionaries also visited communities of the Sodalitium of Christian Life and the Marian Community of Reconciliation, as well as the “Jesús María” Pastoral Center and Our Lady of Reconciliation Parish.
The missions gave the volunteers valuable opportunities to give more of themselves to serve the needy, as well as to grow and commit themselves more with the faith through moments of prayer and liturgy. The organizers are hoping that the faith sown in the hearts of the volunteers will bear fruit both for the spiritual family and for the Church in Canada.
For Josh Canning, a volunteer who has participated four prior missions, these missions “have been a great blessing for me,” and finds himself “blessed in serving others, as we get to know more about ourselves when we are far from our comforts and when we serve the most needy.” Canning added that a very important moment in the missions was “praying with these people, as we were forced to leave our comfort zone to knock on doors and ask if there was anything they wanted us to pray for. Bringing these needs before God is a beautiful experience of human solidarity for which I am grateful.”
This is the second mission trip that the CLM in Canada has made formally in another country, bringing together about 100 volunteers altogether. However, for the past ten years, Canadian university students and professionals, accompanied by Sodalit brother, Raoul Masseur, and in coordination with Solidarity in Action, have taken numerous medical mission trips in needy of Lima areas. You can learn more about these projects on the official website which promotes missions to Peru.