Readers’ Responses: Fall 2022
Reading Time: 4 minutes

I was recently hospitalized, and while there, I kept asking God what my purpose in life could be since I am getting sickly and weak. Surprisingly, when I arrived home upon discharge, I saw the Maryknoll magazine Summer 2022 issue lying on my desk. 

Still light-headed, I opened it and went through every page. The layouts were colorful and each article spoke of the beauty of mission. Each missioner — as young as our essay writers and as remarkable as Sister Miriam Francis Perlewitz — exuded the joy of responding heartily to God’s call to the Maryknoll mission. As I read further with enthusiasm, my insights grew clearer on the selfless giving of one’s self to mission. Much more, the beautiful poem of Father Joseph Veneroso, “Sacred and Wounded,” in the photo meditation has provided me a deep impression of the real meaning of my own purpose in life.

May Maryknoll magazine continually bless your readers’ hearts to love mission. 

Lourdes N. Reynes
Staten Island, New York

Back in 1960, we were happy young girls at Maryknoll Convent School in Kowloon Tong, Hong Kong. We had a beautiful young nun, Sister Miriam Francis, for our music teacher. (See “Teaching Young Hearts to Sing” in the Summer 2022 issue.)

I remember we often had physical education prior to music class. We entered the classroom huffing and puffing while Sister soothed and smoothed our breathlessness playing some classical music by Beethoven or Bach. 

Sister told us that singing is praying to God twice. So in school or at church we sang our hearts out in English or Latin hymns. Latin was our third language (Chinese is our first and English is our second). One thing we never forget over the years is the lovely wink from Sister when we said goodbye at the end of class. 

Sister Miriam, thousands of young singing hearts remember you forever. Take me, for one!  

Mary Tong White
Honolulu, Hawaii

Thank you for the inspiring vocation story of this young man, John Siyumbu from Kenya, in “Finding God in Mission” of the Summer 2022 issue. As a widow my vocation now is to fast and pray for holy priests as well as the souls in purgatory. Thank you for changing your policy at Maryknoll and accepting young men aspiring to the priesthood from outside of the United States. Prayers for Deacon John as he becomes Father John.

God bless all newly ordained priests across the globe and those who nurtured their vocations.

Barbara Faris
Bradenton, Florida

Your Maryknoll magazine sustains me in my prayer life. When I’m experiencing a dry and dusty place in my heart, my soul turns to your beautiful magazine. Its photos, its articles, its poetry, its letters from other readers — everything about it — is water for my thirsty soul. I connect with Christ through you.

Judith Miller
Leeds, New York

Thank you very much for Maryknoll magazine. I enjoy reading all the articles, but I particularly enjoy the poetry. God bless you for all your hard work in the missions. You are in my daily prayers. 

Rose Oliver
North York, Ontario 

I very much appreciated the comment by eighth-grader Riley Szuba, the Division I second-place winner in the Maryknoll Student Essay Contest, in your Summer 2022 issue of Maryknoll magazine, when she wrote, “Through their love, I was able to recognize the love of God.” She was referring to the support she received from relatives, teachers, friends and even strangers after her father passed away.

This confirmed my own belief that God mediates his persona in and through the materiality of our own lives. God’s divine Spirit becomes visible in and through the human spirit that is receptive to his loving will. 

I also very much appreciate that picture on page 17 of Mary Magdalene’s encounter with the Risen Christ. There is a kind of “sudden sacred holiness” conveyed by it.

Thank you for these spiritually nurturing contributions. Our faith is definitely “fed” by them.

Robert Jooharigian
Royal Oak, Michigan

Many greetings to the Maryknoll Fathers and Brothers. Your sister in Christ sends a small contribution for the Maryknoll missioners serving in distant lands. They are an inspiration to us all to keep up the good fight. 

I ask your prayers for my family as we undergo health complications. Please, lift up your prayers on our behalf, to be able to enjoy the wonders of God. 

May we find light in our lives and hold tight to the hand of Jesus.

Teresa Williams
New York, New York


Congratulations to Maryknoll on the ordination of our brother John Siyumbu, a missioner who shared his life and work with our community. Congratulations, Father John. We hope to have you back at our parish community.  

San Pio X parish
Cochabamba, Bolivia
Vía Facebook

Editor’s note: The last two letters were received in Spanish and translated by Maryknoll staff.

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