Gaya Reena Saji challenges us to embrace mission trips, as an experience of the love of Jesus through the lives of those people we are called to serve.
It was with utmost enthusiasm as well as a tinge of anxiety that our team of eight students and a nun from St. Teresa’s College, Ernakulam, set out for our mission trip to Bommithi in Tamil Nadu, on 14 May 2019. The train journey was very interesting – on the one hand we kept learning some prayers in Tamil that we thought would be useful in the days to come, while our Lord kept inspiring and teaching us several other things that we needed to know through our experiences and interaction with the co-passengers.
We arrived at Dharmapuri Railway station late in the evening, where Fr. Arputharaj received us. Later, Father offered a special Holy Mass for us at St. Antony’s Parish, Bommithi, our mission place. Thereafter, in groups of three, we took shelter at the homes arranged for our stay. Though the houses were small, the hearts of the people living in them were much large enough to accommodate and welcome us. They were very attentive to our every need, and were often worried whether the facilities available for us were adequate enough. We rested together on the floor and shared the same mat and had the same meals. We conversed with their neighbours and soon became one among these families.