I am one of those who believe that mothers play a crucial role in building the character of an individual. I remember my mom telling me that when I was in her womb, she would pray with her hands on her tummy and ask God to make her child a saint of this new world. I hope, I am on the journey of fulfilling her prayers. Growing up, she would ensure that each night before bed I would join my hands and thank God for the blessings he has showered on our family. Even now when she would sense that there is something troubling me, she would send these bible verses on my WhatsApp, helping me to get back on track. She has been an influence not just for me and my brother, but also for my wife. My better half ensures that each night before we go to bed, we would pray this beautiful prayer; “God we offer this womb of ours. Plant your saints in this womb and give them the conviction to do only your will”.

Vivin Varghese, Delhi, India

Rudyard Kipling said that “as God could not be everywhere, he made mothers”. Mother is the name for God in the lips and hearts of little children. For me she is indeed God on earth, the most influential woman in my life who gave me Jesus and his mother Mary. What I am today is because of my mother. She taught me to value eternal life above all, and use this earthly life to serve others and do the will of God. She lives a life showing God as the father, best friend, savior and all in all. She taught me to sing hymns, pray, read bible, strictly attend Sunday mass and daily mass, share everything with others, sacrifice my own interest for others, see God in others and walk with God. My mother is like mother Mary who submitted to the will of God, and like the mother of seven kids who refused to dishonor God and was killed after telling her children that ‘I am just the vehicle for you to come to earth, and your father is God’. My mother who demonstrates such a profound spiritually healthy life is like the woman of Proverb 31, who instilled in me the love of God and prepared me to die for God.

Soney Abraham, USA

From a young age I saw my mum being the pillar of our family through her prayers and hard work. When she got sick suddenly I started questioning God and why he was letting all this happen to our family. My mum even in the mist of her suffering and pain remembered to hold Jesus close to her heart, she never complained. She continued praising and thanking God. I didn’t how someone could love God like this even through the toughest times in her life. She told me these small suffering can’t be compared to all the blessings in our life. She taught me to count the blessings I failed to notice in the midst of small sufferings in my life.

Sneha Babu, Cork, Ireland

When I started getting more involved in the youth ministry, my mindset was that of a project manager, “There is an event, do the event, move on and forget about the whole thing”. Unfortunately, that’s just not how JY works. Our focus is on the individual; we are the sort of people who would leave the ninety-nine to find the one that is lost. This was not something that I could get my head around, but my sisters in the ministry here are pros at it. They seem to have this innate ability to see the individual, to intercede for them, to journey with them, to be, in essence, a Jesus Youth in their lives. Of all the things that the women in JY UK have taught me, this is what I am most grateful for, because I receive this highly individualistic level of formation and follow up from them every day.

Ajish Joshy, Croydon, UK

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