From the Director
From our earliest days, almost a century ago, Columban missionaries have employed people to assist us in a variety of roles to support our mission. A few did housekeeping; some maintained buildings and grounds, while others assisted with office work. Thanks to their efforts behind the scenes, our priests were able to devote more time and energy to promoting mission in the public arena.
As times changed, so also has the contribution of our employees or co-workers. We still highly value the services of those who cook and clean, as well as those who mow the lawns and fix the leaks, but today Columbans also require coworkers who are able to harness the rapid advances in technology in order to promote our mission. While we continue to depend on Columban missionaries in various countries across the globe to provide us with stories of their lives and ministries, we also depend on professional co-workers to present these stories through our magazines, websites and social media. In order to reach the minds and hearts of younger generations, we have to preach the Good News to them online as well as from the sanctuary, and befriend them on Facebook as well as face to face.
On the other hand, in recent years we have come to depend more on co-workers to provide care for our growing number of sick and elderly priests who have returned home after a lifetime of service in our mission countries. Like most families who have an aging parent, we try hard to ensure that our elderly priests remain living with their Columban family for as long as is reasonably possible. However, due to the large number of priests with increasing infirmities, we rely heavily on co-workers to assist us with this, and are greatly saddened when one of our priest colleagues has to move eventually to a care facility.
Both in our retirement home and in our mission office, our co-workers work alongside Columban priests. Our co-workers provide valuable professional services, while our priests ensure that our mission always remains at the forefront. Moreover, we provide our co-workers with opportunities to learn about our mission so that they find their work both personally and professionally rewarding.
Whether in far flung mission fields, or here in the U.S., Columban missionaries and our coworkers realize that “there are different kinds of gifts, but the same Spirit distributes them. There are different kinds of service, but the same Lord. There are different kinds of activities, but in all of them and in everyone it is the same God at work.” (1 Corinthians 12:4-6)