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MISSION TRIP 2017 

TESTIMONIALS

Sandy McGreevy
In July a group of 12 people from the Parish of the Holy Family traveled to Louisa Kentucky for the annual mission trip to the Father Beiting Appalachian Mission.  This was my second time going on the mission trip.   Cindy, the volunteer coordinator at the mission stared the week stating that two goals for the week were spreading the Word of our Lord and doing home repairs, with the repairs being the second priority.  I have a variety of experiences to share with you.

Each morning we started the day with 7 am mass.  At the church (St. Jude’s) there were stained glass windows stating some of the corporal works of mercy (Feed the Hungry, Clothe the naked, Visit the sick etc.)  This was a glimpse of what our week would hold. During the week our group repaired floors, doors, and windows.  We painted walls and ceilings. We sorted clothing and supplies for thrift stores and addressed mailings. We worked on digging a drainage trench and replaced a door lockset. These physical tasks were only part of our experience. Every day at the job we started and ended with a group prayer, which was not only appreciated but encouraged by the residents. 
The people we helped were Otis, who was bedridden and his wife Loraine who used a motorized chair and they were cared for by their grown son, Clifford, who was legally blind.  We helped Ollie and his family by repairing their floor and painting. We spent time with Sylvia who was a 93 year old lady who lived alone and needs companionship.
They also encouraged other missionary work.  We visited people at a nursing home, where we socialized and played bingo with them.  We went to blue grass sing-a-long at a thrift store and participated in a mini ‘flash mob’ at a local Walmart where we read a psalm from the bible.  We also met and socialized with two other groups from Pennsylvania and Michigan.  The reason to go on a mission trip is to give to others, but in reality, more was given to us through the power of Jesus.  We received the gifts of new friendships, exhaustion, appreciation, compassion and the voice of Jesus. 
As I mentioned we visited with Sylvia, who lived alone. He husband died twenty years ago and she had no children.  She only had a brother who lived in Florida who would call her.  We sat with her for three hours listening to her stories and she shared with us remarkable songs and divine poems that she wrote.  We heard the voice of Jesus through her. I will try to have the poems posted on our church website and I encourage all to go and read how moving they are. We realized that she is, and we are, not alone in our life’s Journey.  Jesus is there with us step by step. 

Craig L. Augustyn  Subject: Parish of the Holy Family, Thank You for Our (My) Growth
When it was first put on my heart to follow, I had no idea what was in store four years ago.  These mission trips, these projects, the people truly aligning with God’s design.  God the creator, the conductor, director, Shepard; is the beginning and knows the ending; God’s loving interest is what lies within this moment of time.

My Utmost for His Highest, by Oswald Chambers, July 28th, entitled God’s Purpose or Mine?;  it states, “What we see as only the process of reaching a particular end, God sees as the goal itself.”
With the lightness of our projects this year, it allowed my eyes to watch, see, observe; it allowed my ears to hear, listen, retain.  The evening time, working together in dinner preparation, to recap, to share our day’s events of what we seen, heard, felt in our hearts.  This trip was special, hearts softened, connected, bonded, blossomed, bloomed and opened up.  This group, team, flock deconstructed the protective worldly facade, opened up, revealed, shared inner thoughts, concerns and joys.  In doing so, it let other in to their hearts, making for a deeper connection, personal relationship.  The service FBAMC provides, offers, gifts, is twofold; it offers local residents physical and spiritual assistance, it gifts volunteers with a sabbatical, allows God to work through the individual, harrowing and plowing for opening then sowing joy and peace.  This refers to Fr. Mike’s sermon, St Jude Louisa KY, ‘We sow seeds of tears, offering them to God, and He blesses us, resulting in an abundant harvest that reaps joy.’  At Friday evening fellowshipping when completing the exiting form was enriching, it disclosed the week – “the goal itself”.

Emma Mazzola

My most memorable experience happened on our last day when my group went to help a woman   named Sylvia She was 92 years old, and lived alone, so she was very lonely. She really just  needed someone to talk to, and there were only a few minor problems that she needed fixed, so once everything was fixed, we stayed and talked with her. She shared a beautiful book of poems, and even sang us a song. She had been through alot, losing her husband, some of her siblings, and having no children, yet she was so happy. She found something to make her happy, and this was her faith in God. This was a memorable experience, because it taught me more than just how lucky I am, which is an important lesson that I think everyone learned from every house we went. Sylvia really taught me a deeper part of that lesson, she taught me to really keep my  Faith close to me, because knowing that you are lucky, and privileged, is humbling, but having faith through whatever is troubling you is what will make you truly happy.

FROM KENTUCKY MISSION TRIP - JULY 2017 - POEMS BY SYLVIA SAVAGE 

Teach me how to wait on you

God teach me to be patient,

Teach me to go slow.

Teach me how to wait on you,

When my way I do not know.

Teach me sweet forbearance

When things do not go right.

So I remain unruffled

When others grow uptight.

Teach me how to quiet

My racing, racing heart.

So I may bear the answer

You are trying to impart.

Teach me to let go Dear God,

And pray undisturbed until

My heart is filled

With inner peace and I

Will learn to know your will.

LET US PRAY

Oh won’t you spend a moment

Though busy be your day

To think about some soul in need

And for that dear one pray.

Sometimes we never realize

How great that cross they bear

And that perhaps this very hour

They desperately need a prayer.

It may be at that moment

You lift them up in prayer

That faith will reach the heart of God

And he’ll stoop down with care

And gently ease the burden

This one has carried long

Replacing all despair and doubt

With hope and joyful song.

They’ll feel his presence near them

In a most blessed way

And all because you took the time

And cared enough to pray.

Oh, friend there are so many

With troubled hearts today

For whom we ought to pray.

The problems are so varied,

Some graver that the rest

But every precious heart that aches

But Jesus needs be blest.

Let’s set some time aside friend

Today and every day

To think about these souls in need,

Oh let us care and pray.

I’m Sure God Knows

I’m sure God knows that we would need

A reassuring touch

When he made the friendly hand clasp

That warms our hearts so much

I’m sure he knew that skies of blue

Would oftentimes turn gray

He put the sunshine in a smile

To chase the clouds away

God knew, I’m sure, that you and I

Would need a helping hand

Or a kind word, to let us know

Others care and understand

God must have known our hearts would need

A special kind of cheer

I’m sure that’s why he sent dear friends

To journey with us here.

The Cure

When I am sad or so depressed

I turn to God in Prayer

And always when I search within

I find him waiting there

His love is filled with bounty

Of good things that I need

It is His will His children

To shelter and to feed

So why should I sit downcast

And spend my time in fret

I know so will I have a God

Through whom my needs are met

My task is therefore first to seek

I’ve found no cure for ailment

Like I’ve found through prayer.

Trust and Believe

Trust and believe my gentle friend

In all you say and do

For Christ will take you by the hand

And he will see you through.

Trust and believe my gentle friend,

No matter what’s in store.

The Lord will be there at your side

As he’s always been before.

Trust and believe my gentle friend,

With all your heart and soul,

The Master will take care of you

And help you reach your goal.

Trust and believe my gentle friend,

Reach out to heaven above,

And God will smile down on you

And touch you with his love.

God Open My Eyes

God open my eyes

So I may see

And feel your presence close to me

Give me strength

For my stumbling feet

As I battle the crowd

Of life’s busy street.

And widen the vision of my unseeing eyes

So in passing faces, I’ll recognize

Not just a stranger unloved and unknown

But a friend with a heart

That is much like mine own

Give me perception to make me aware

That scattered profusely

On life’s thoroughfare

And the best gifts of God

That we daily pass by

As we look at the world

With an unseeing eye.

Follow in His Footsteps                    

Follow in His footsteps

And let Him lead the way

He knows just where the path will go

And won’t lead you astray.

Listen to the Master and His words of love

Don’t think about your doubts of fear

Just come now as He calls

Raise your eyes toward Heaven

Look into his face

Let His brightness cover you

With the goodness of His grace

Follow in His footsteps

Give Him your storms seas

He’ll make of them a flowing stream

Of happiness and peace.

My Prayer

Today I stopped dear Lord to think

Of all the things you’ve done

Of all the tears you’ve dried for me

And all the battles won.

Of all the times my head hung low

Without a friend to care

Now looking back, I clearly see

That you was always there.

You’ve heard my prayer when no one knew

The pain I felt inside

So many times no words would come

And I just knelt and cried

Sometimes it would be easy Lord

To give into defeat

And let old Satan have his way

Admitting I am beat

But somewhere deep inside of me

I heard your gentle voice

That circumstance is not excuse

And victory is a choice

There’s one more thing I ask of you

I may somehow repay

May those I meet where ever I go

See Christ in all I do.

And may all my deeds and all my ways

Say, Lord how much I love you.

The Parish of the Holy Family
4100 Lyell Road
Rochester, NY 14606
585-247-4322

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