News & Events

Will You Pray for the Poor?

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By: Deacon Nick Sherg, St. Martin de Porres Church, Orange, California

The week of June 16, 2010 changed my life forever. Thanks to a fellow Diaconate classmate, AI Scaduto (and his lovely wife, Linda), I was invited to experience MOP. I was overcome with emotion on the first day while holding little Anthony in my arms at Bethlehem. Realizing that this little boy would never be like my own son, Tony, I made a conscious decision to follow the call I heard to become a “joyful servant” of MOP.

However, as I worked at the Centers that week, not only did I feel a need to serve those who live in the  Centers but  I   began to notice the  loving   and  tender care of the Brothers and felt a need to serve them, as  well. I became attracted to their regimen of prayer, work, fellowship and community. The fact that they choose to be here and fulfill the vocation that God has called them is nothing less than a true blessing.

For me their humility in serving is awe-inspiring and is what has caused me to continue to want to be around them and pray for them.

I came back the next year with a smaller group from our Diaconate class but I also brought along a friend from my parish, Oscar Valenzuela and his wife and daughter. The      following  year, Oscar and I invited three fellow parishioners from St.  Martin de Porres in Yorba Linda, California to join us. After the trip Oscar and I (along with the tremendous support of our wives) and have been humbly blessed to travel         to Uganda and Cap Hai-tien. This year, we returned to Jamaica.

As I write this today, I just came back from Good Shepherd with my heart full and my soul at rest with all the hugs and smiles I received.

There are too many pages in journals to recount the wonderful experience I have had, all thanks to God and the Missionaries of the Poor Brothers.

Many times I am asked, “Why not just send the money of the cost of the plane ticket and my vacation pay to the Brothers?” My reply is simple: I want to be in solidarity with the Brothers.  They call me to be a better person. They remind me of the importance of prayer in my daily life, even when days are filled with difficult, loving and demanding responsibilities. I truly feel the need to show the Brothers that  they are being supported in  their             life’s calling and to know that there is a community who loves them.  Jesus tells us “the poor will always be with us”. My prayer is that the  Brothers will  always be  with  poor. God bless the Brothers and Sisters of MOP.