Readers’ Responses January / February 2017

FACING FACTS
I was very upset by the letter titled “Disrespectful” in the September/October issue of Maryknoll magazine. The letter writer is entitled to her opinion that the magazine should not have run pictures and names of mentally ill people in Cambodia. Her attitude is so much like the people I know who would be offended by the same thing—not because it is really offensive or disrespectful but because they are now faced with the fact that such situations and individuals actually exist, here with pictures and names.

As long as we don’t have pictures, names and description of the illnesses, we can deny that such things exist in our lives. I applaud Maryknoll magazine for all it does to picture, document and provide proof of some of the horrifying situations in our world. Admit it. These people and their illness do exist, no matter how much people may try to hide them or cover them up. I love your magazine, and all the Maryknollers for making the world aware of things we sometimes wish to ignore or disbelieve.
Valerine K. Ward
Poplarville, Mississippi

 

REGARDING SALVATION
In your July/August magazine, a letter writer expressed the opinion that anyone who wants to should be able to receive Holy Communion.

Our good Lord loves to come to the pure and to the repentant, but he said he cannot reside where Satan resides. He said he has nothing to do with the proud, that they are human demons. When we receive our Lord Jesus in the most blessed sacrament of the altar, we receive all of him, body, blood, soul and divinity. We receive the living God, also since in his divine nature, he is indivisible from the Father and the Holy Spirit, and we are receiving them too. Holy Communion can be for our salvation if we receive our Lord in the state of grace and for damnation if we receive him in the state of sin. Catholics used to have a good understanding of this because priests used to teach the Lord’s flock rightly. Catholics need to educate themselves on the true teaching of our Lord and of his holy Catholic Church, especially in regard to salvation.
Elizabeth DeCristofaro
Spring, Texas

 

MERCIFUL MYSTERIES
Father Veneroso’s merciful mysteries of the rosary leave a powerful message to us all. It should be added to the joyful, sorrowful, glorious and luminous mysteries of the rosary. I have been a daily rosary devotee for many decades (I am 82) just as my mother and grandparents were. Thank you, Father Veneroso, for sharing your talent with us.
Doris E. Richard
Olney, Maryland

 

INSPIRED WRITINGS
I would like to thank Father Joseph Veneroso for his beautiful and inspired writings in both Maryknoll magazine and the prayer cards that appear in our monthly letters from Father Raymond Finch. Two of these arrived with miraculous timing for our family just recently. Our son, Jim, died in his sleep on Aug. 9. He was 45 years old. Needless to say, it was a shock. In preparing for his funeral (I still can hardly type that word), I knew we wanted to have a recitation of the holy rosary beforehand. Jim had helped me in the St. Vincent de Paul pantry at our parish and knew several of the other volunteers, so I asked five of my “rocks” there to lead the decades and spread the word to the others to attend and pray for Jim. I was struggling with the decision to say glorious mysteries, which often accompany this kind of service, or the joyful mysteries, which are said on Mondays. That very day, the Maryknoll magazine arrived in the mail and your merciful mysteries were right there before me. They echoed the kind, compassionate life my son lived. The choice was loud and clear. I typed them out, along with the meditations, and put them in the pews in the church. More than 50 Vincentians recited your mysteries, and there were no copies to pick up after Mass. Everyone took them home.

Less dramatic, but just as comforting, was the prayer card that came in our Maryknoll mailing just the other day. Our daughter Erin is having a very hard time missing her brother. She is an elementary school teacher and Jim’s funeral was on what was to be her first day of work to get her classroom ready. Her principal was very understanding and told her to take as much of the week as she needed. Other teachers hurried their own preparations so they could be in her room to help her when she came back on Wednesday. Still her heart was not in it. She told me she just couldn’t focus. All she wanted to do was be with her family. Then I opened our mail and read your prayer for teachers. I gave it to her and it brought her much comfort. She is exactly the teacher you describe.

So, Father Veneroso, please keep writing and sharing. If you ever feel discouraged or lose your focus, please remember that there are families like ours who benefit from your gift. God has given you the ability to convey his message and the vehicle of Maryknoll to make that happen. May he keep you happy in his work for a long time to come.
Peggy Hietpas
Gresham, Oregon

 

SLAVERY AT SEA
Please convey a message to Susan Gunn, the author of “Modern Slavery at Sea” in your September/October issue of Maryknoll magazine. After reading this moving article, I sat right down and wrote to my two senators and one representative urging them to support the bill about transparency in the business supply chain. My parish “faith in action” discussion group meets monthly, but we old ladies don’t feel like we can do much to solve the world’s problems. But we can pray and we can write letters!
Rita Jacob
Springfield, Missouri

 

BEST MAGAZINE
Thanks for sending the May/June 2016 issue of Maryknoll magazine. You publish an excellent mission magazine. I think it is the very best Catholic mission magazine in the United States. Congratulations to all of those who are responsible for its publication!
Brother Anthony Kreinus, SVD
Epworth, Iowa

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