Mission Society of the Philippines


Missionary Vocation is G.O.L.D.E.N


Revved up, inspired, and motivated! These were the initial fruits of the just concluded opening three-day retreat of the MSP seminary in Tagaytay City last June 2-4, 2-15. The said spiritual exercise was facilitated by no less than the two young MSP clergy namely Rev. Frs. Marc Louie “Macky” Calo and Fredie “Eiderf” Permentella, missionaries to The Netherland and New Zealand respectively.

The retreat zeroed in the role of God in the life of a missionary. He is the one who sends, leads and sustains. It is he whom we seek and desire (Mt 6:33). Mission is God’s and missionaries are called to participate. They are the faces of God in the world of today just as those whom they serve and encounter in the mission.

One’s fidelity is possible when he is able to Obey God and the promptings of the Holy Spirit. Priests and seminarians obey by listening to the superiors and even to the wisdom of our conscience, families, friends, and environment. Through them God speaks in a language comprehensible to men so as to realize missionary endeavors in His Way.

An example of this is St. Paul the apostle who left the zeal and dedication for the mission to his fellow apostles and to the early Christian communities. These are his Legacies. Missionaries too are called to demonstrate Christian way of life as witnesses of the Gospel until they finish fulfilling their part (1 Tim 4:7). These are the treasures we pass to others; the treasures which belong to God. As what the MSP aptly puts it: the faith received, the faith shared.

Frs. Macky and Eiderf gave testimonies that what fuels this challenging if not difficult mission is their inextinguishable Desire for God. In their concrete experiences, God has instilled a longing in each man’s heart in order to seek the One who can quench all man’s desires.  St. Augustine resonates to this when he exclaimed: “You have made us for yourself, O Lord, and my heart is restless until it rest in you.”

This profound disposition impels each missionary to still be Enthusiastic amid difficulties and personal struggles. The etymology of the word construes that it is “having God within.” This is the very reason why the missionaries, especially those from MSP, are known for their joyful disposition and grateful spirits (Psalm 8).

Nederigheid (humility in Dutch), Fr. Macky suggests, is what makes a person serve God and allow the Lord be at work in the mission. “All who exult themselves will be humbled and whoever humbles himself will be exalted (Lk 14:11).” In humility, one learns to depend on God’s grace and not on his own strength and capabilities.

Missionary vocation indeed is G.O.L.D.E.N. It found in the depths of oneself. Its value and significance can only be grasped when one is able to unearth it from the rubbles of one’s story. When it is prune from its impurities, it illuminates its Light to others. It is only then that one can really becomes a grateful and joyful sharers of God’s salvific mission. 

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