Readers’ Responses Fall 2021

Readers respond to our print, web and social media posts.

FAITH PERSUASION
I have been a reader of Maryknoll magazine going back to the mid-1950s. It was my grandfather’s subscription and later my dad’s. And for the past few decades, I have had my own subscription. Regardless of your editorial position or slant, I have and will continue to support the good and faithful work of your missioners.
I was pleasantly surprised to read Brian F. Sullivan’s letter in the Summer 2021 issue. I, too, support Donald Trump, and I was elected as a Trump presidential delegate from Illinois last year. Also, like Mr. Sullivan, I am “not unfamiliar with the developing world,” having served in Vietnam in 1969.
I firmly believe that the faithful, regardless of political persuasion, can be part of the Maryknoll family and help contribute to Maryknoll’s selfless effort to bring Jesus’ love to all.

John F. Morrissey, Jr.
Elmhurst, Illinois

MISLEADING CONNECTION
Connecting a customer sneezing in Wuhan market as the cause for 117 million people contracting COVID-19 worldwide 16 months later and then in the article alleging “a random incident half a world away can impact us all” is misleading, considering that the Chinese Communist Party refused to allow an independent, outside investigation into the cause of the virus, which may have come from the Wuhan lab operated by the CCP military. Father Joseph R. Veneroso’s attempt at what appears to be a poetic connection for his article is not only misleading but unfortunate, considering the lack of credibility that permeates much of American media today.

Carl Schaefer
Beacon, New York

COLLEGE LINK
In the Summer 2021 edition of Maryknoll magazine, I noticed a photo of the late Father Thomas Goekler wearing a Manhattan College “Jaspers” shirt. After I left the Maryknoll seminary in Glen Ellyn, Illinois, in 1966, I finished my bachelor’s degree in economics at Manhattan College, Riverdale, New York, graduating in 1968. I then served for 26 years in the Navy, retiring in 1994 as a supply corps captain. I always read your magazine, and will continue to support the Maryknoll Society. I’m wondering: Did Father Goekler attend Manhattan College?

Benedict J. Maguire
Clermont, Florida

Editor’s note: According to our Maryknoll archives, Father Goekler is not a Manhattan College alum. He earned a bachelor’s degree in philosophy and a master of divinity degree, both from St. Bernard Seminary, Rochester, New York. The photo in the Summer 2021 issue was taken in 2006 when a group of Manhattan College students volunteered to help Father Goekler’s mission in Barrio Chamelecón, San Pedro Sula, Honduras.

ENRICHED READING
The Summer 2021 Maryknoll magazine brings me joy. Publishing student essays on an assigned topic is enriched reading and offers hopefulness. Perhaps you might consider extending the contest internationally. It would be a delight.

Kathleen H. Kennedy
Ashtabula, Ohio

MARYKNOLL EXPRESSIONS
I have enjoyed Maryknoll magazine for many years, and was happy to see the good being done with my contributions. Many of the most touching and inspiring stories are about the service of Maryknoll sisters and lay missioners. So, I was disappointed when I noticed the small print near the front of the magazine that distinguished between the three kinds of “Maryknollers,” and the contribution form at the back that says that donations will only be used to support the work of the men’s organization.
Please don’t think that I am devaluing the work of the Maryknoll Fathers and Brothers. I have been a supporter since the middle of the last century. I even understand the reasons for the three branches, to some extent. Our parish was founded and staffed by Salvatorian priests, brothers, sisters and lay members. One of my sons is the head of the U.S. province of the men’s part of that society. It seems that the Salvatorians’ founder originally intended to have the order more fully integrated, but medieval political constraints required more social distancing between ordained, professed, lay, male and female members.
Would it be possible to add a note near the contribution form to indicate how donors could help support the Maryknoll sisters and lay missioners? If they have separate magazines, I don’t know about them. If their work is only promoted in your magazine, it doesn’t seem fair that they don’t share in the resulting income.

Gerald Wocken
Huntsville, Alabama

Editor’s note: Yes, there are canonical reasons for the separate expressions of Maryknoll. The note on the bottom of page 3 of the magazine was drafted a few years ago, with the input of leadership of the Maryknoll Society, Maryknoll Sisters, Maryknoll Lay Missioners and Maryknoll Affiliates, specifically to be transparent and address the topic of your letter. The Maryknoll Sisters and Maryknoll Lay Missioners each regularly have ads in the magazine in which they may promote vocations, programs or fundraising. All the expressions have websites, and the URLs for those sites are at the bottom of the articles for each entity in this, our annual vocation issue. The lay missioners have a magazine that publishes less frequently than Maryknoll and the affiliates have a bimonthly newsletter.

Featured image: Seminarian John Siyumbu interacts with Brenda Garcia while teaching a catechism class at Saint Pius X Church in Cochabamba, Bolivia. He is one of the Maryknoll missioners in training featured in the Fall 2021 Maryknoll magazine.

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