Gotta Find a Home: Conversations with Street People

http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00KTSD9Q0/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&camp=211189&creative=373489&creativeASIN=B00KTSD9Q0&link_code=as3&tag=readejourn0e-20&linkId=OFPKZ6AQFK4XK5UP

When I started my blogging journey, I got in touch with the author of this book Dennis Cardif. Somehow, I felt he is authentic! We communicated a couple of times. And I am really happy to see his dream came true. And money from this book goes to Street People.

Dennis really walked his talk. During his walk to office and home, he noticed poor people, spent couple of minutes to talk with them, brought food for them, supported them and wrote his experience in his blog.

It is a very simple act to kindness and compassion towards a human being. I was so inspired by him and shared about him in couple of JY groups and also wrote my own experiences of meeting street-dwellers in this blog. At the same time, I am really frustrated to realize that a out there, high potential JY communities and individuals are slowly comforting themselves into a sedentary lifestyle, and like to introduce themselves as proud Jesus Youth families!

Especially pin pointing the JYs, who are dwelling in their low risk comfort zones! Most of us are glued into risk-free ‘office missions’ and consider it as equivalent as risky missions. I appreciate the ideological explosions happening in The Movement for its collective growth but at the same time I do not want myself to compromise on our missionary calls.

The beauty of our Movement is its duality. Jesus Youth is a movement and at the same time is a person. I can point a person and tell my friend, “That person is a Jesus Youth”! And now the question is: “Are we willing to live up to the mission of The Movement?”

There is a famous quote by world’s richest man – Warren Buffet: “I stay within what I call my circle of competence.” Yes, what he said is about business and investments. Let this law rule the business and safeguard our businesses but do not bring this into our lives.

Therefore, I strongly believe the theory of Warren Buffet is not applicable when we talk about Christian life, and not at all applicable for a missionary. A Christian life is not profit loss statement! That is why Papa Francis said about a different theory “…But I tell you, I far prefer a Church that has had a few accidents to a Church that has fallen sick from being closed.

Which theory are you following in your personal life? Theory of business or theory of Church? Are we ready to go out and meet the people or still want to enjoy the comfort zones of our community? Let us make some loss for our brothers, let us make some loss for needy people.

Remember, Option for the poor – A least bothered pillar, which we keep near to our heart. I think it’s time to end our safe-play, break the circle of competence, take some risk and time to go out into mission fields. Yes, let us make some accidents!

Ref: https://gottafindahome.wordpress.com/

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Christian Mysticism

Altar boys arrive in procession during a mass celebrated by Pope Benedict XVI to commemorate cardinals and bishops who died this year, at the Vatican

The core of the Catholic Spirituality is ‘Christian Mysticism’ – Our secret paths of growth in God.

As a Jesus Youth, our pillars should fine tune us towards Christian Mysticism. But have to fight the emotions and temptations of flesh which will emphasize our self-importance. We are not important! Growth of Christ within us is important!

Remember, Kingdom of God is never spoon fed to anyone. Knowledge about the kingdom of God can be obtained from The Texts. But its existence cannot be experienced from texts. Its existence is revealed only to its ‘seekers’. So seek for that revelation in your life!

The truth is not what you see in this world. The truth is what is revealed to you. How much is it revealed to you? Let us reflect about it in this Lent season. God bless!

God’s kingdom, is it so wonderful ??!

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“For the kingdom of God is not food and drink; but righteousness, and peace, and joy in the Holy Spirit.” – Romans 14:17

Imagine that you are closely watching God’s kingdom. There you met joyful angels, you felt the loving communications of saints and you saw the immense grace of God. As a human at this point there are two possibilities of actions. First possible action is that you may thirst for this heaven, adapt it and may recreate its experience for others. Second possible action is that  you may get jealous. You may feel awkward, irritated by seeing their unity and love and may act against heaven.

Now let us come back to our world, when we closely observe some families and fellowships in church, we may sense and feel the same righteousness, peace and joy of God’s kingdom. In reality we are closely watching God’s kingdom in-front us.

What do you feel when you see such wonderful families?
What do you feel when you see such wonderful fellowships?

That feeling will tell you where you are at the journey to heaven.

The Pillars!

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When ever I go through the life of blessed “Luce” (Blessed Chiara Badano), The Focolare Movement swiftly slips into my mind. I am few years younger than Lucy. However, if she has been around there, I may travel the continents to meet that young saint. One of the beauty of VC2 is that, a common man started experiencing The Church. People became aware that, like a near to earth moving cloud, the spirit is dwelling in every corner, every whisper of Church.

Love was the spark that gave birth to the Focolare Movement. The name focolare arises from this experience. At the height of the World War II, Chiara Lubich and a group of friends who were rediscovering the Gospel began to live it concretely, realizing that everything passes in life. They discovered the God of Love, the ideal for which it is worthwhile to spend one’s life.

Couple of decades later, when the communism became an opium for the young eastern youths, signs of another movement were visible in Southern part of India – The Jesus Youth Movement. It is always inspiring to study the work of Holy Spirit and the similarities of movements which emerged after VC2. Most of the new evangelization movements have one major common factor which changes a person- The God experience, or ‘transformation’ in the words of theologians. If we miss it, then we miss the essence of the movement. Saints went through this transforming experience and I believe now this experiences are out-poured through movements within Catholic Church.

An encounter with Christ is highly important in Catholic life. It will transform a person.

Reject every opportunities to encounter Christ and we may never know the grace that touches and shields us. However, if we are transformed, a new world of heaven on earth are revealed to us and that is awesome!

Jesus Youth is such a powerful movement which can transform you, if you are ready to integrate well into her pillars!

Flowers of Tabernacle

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I was sitting, looking at you Jesus
While Carmilites adorn the altar
A sudden insight flexed into versus
Smelt into broken strings of a guitar
Rim of my heart throbs with my lips
“O! flowers of tabernacle, into my heart you slips
How blessed you are clasping Lord
Hold me into your chord
So I can touch his robe
To heal broken strings of my heart”

The Auto Rickshaw Driver

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It was almost 11 PM. The city was dark and silent. I was looking for a good salon to cut my hair and do some patch works to my beard. However, none of the salons was available.

All these years, most of my holidays were spent in Emirates, so a little unfamiliarity with Kochi. In Emirates, even at twelve midnight we are welcomed to a salon. But, Kochi is always frightened after the sun set. At night, she likes to go into her dark blanket and snore. Some fast food outlets and few street dwellers, all other decent business are closed.

I decided to sought help from that Rickshaw driver, with long hair. Bunch of his hair neatly topknot (colloquially we call that hairstyle ‘Kudumi’) and his long curly beard is combed well. Altogether, in that gloomy street light he looked like silhouette of a familiar sage.

We started roaming through deserted streets to find a salon. Each time when he stopped, he removed his small neck braces and his slip-over like spinal support was exposed a bit, which prompted me to ask him about it. It was as if, he was waiting for someone to listen to him. Doctors already advised him not to drive the Rickshaw but there is no other option for means. He finished his physiotherapy sessions and came back to job.

We did not found an open saloon, but I asked him to keep driving. I was ready to pay for his story. Then he started talking about his dancer daughter. He was painful when he talked about his daughters ambition to act in movie was plucked by dirty predators. Did he shed tears when he explained how they escaped? I am not sure, I was sitting behind him but was closer enough to hear his sigh.

Because of this incident, he left his native place with his family where he lived modestly. The family was eager to kill themselves, but this man had the grace to take his family trough those troublesome days. He talked a lot about his still depressed wife and still young sons. When I got out, he opened his valet to show me his dearest family. They all smiles to the challenges what they faced.

I too dream with him, one day let his daughter pursuit doctoral studies in art, let his sons earn well and let his wife be relieved from the episodes of depressions. I pray for them… our Christ will count each drops of tears which he shed! Let his spine be healed. Let him find good angels around him to support him. Amen!

A short visit to Kochi

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Yes, I came to Kochi again, for a short visit.
Christ has born and Christmas is over, however the crowd in the street does not bother about these happenings around them. They are moving fast like a clock, seeking better happiness. And there I saw that old man with saintly face. He is sitting in street like a stilled clock. I think he is younger than my Grand Pa, but still old. In the hot sun among the dirt of the street he is begging for his daily needs. Actually he is not even begging, he is simply sitting, only thing that bothers him may be the hot, unpleasant sun. Watching him, I moved to the cathedral. Behind the current cathedral, a very posh cathedral is under construction for the sake of St. George. The cathedral is unfinished, like the life of that old man.

Cathedral can sustain the hot sun, but this man, will he survive without water? Who bothers. I came back to see him again. When I gave him a 7up, he grabbed it but did not had the strength to open the bottle and that task was assigned to me. And then I presented him with my Christmas cake. It was a joyful moment for both of us. I met my Christ and he met a human with a Christmas cake!

Time to move, to the International Assembly of Jesus Youth. I never dreamt that, I will be somewhere in any Assembly. It is Gods call, He called me to meet the old man, the painful Rickshaw driver, the JYs leaders from around the world, the spiritual directors, those world famous theologians and some of my friends. Why he called me to go through these wonderful experiences? It is a mystery.

As my friends says, Kochi has changed a lot. Yes she has changed a lot, but still Christ is roaming in the street looking for humans.