Fr. Calvo’s session proved a challenging experience in my Euntes journey as I prepare myself for my missionary exposure. It was an experience of deepening my understanding of the margins. The flashed pictures on the power point presentation of the marginalized people made me reflect and I asked myself these questions, “Why are these things happening to them? Why are they poor? Do they choose to become poor, to be oppressed by people who are in power? What can I offer as a missionary novice facing this reality?” It was my moment of silence when I pondered on these queries. With my perspective, I thought that mission is only about going into the boundaries, but it’s not, it’s going beyond… entering into the humanity of the people.
Our exposure in Basilan with the Badjaos imprinted a mark in my heart. As they shared, they were trying their best to be accepted in the community… that one day people will not fool them because they have knowledge already. Their hope and their effort to learn is quite vivid.
It was very striking to me when I heard them. Most of the time, they are considered as outcast in our society. It’s seldom that we can hear that our government is doing some efforts to uplift the lives of our Badjao brothers and sisters. They are just victims of injustices and of poverty.
Now, what is the challenge for me? I should have the stance to fight for the marginalized, promote life and dignity of the people. This is difficult to attain unless I have the conversion of heart, the conversion to turn and help the marginalized and the oppressed in my little ways. This is a process to really be in the mission of God (Missio Dei), through His manifestation in the margins.
I will end this reflection with the quote of Fr. Calvo that struck me. He said, “In doing mission, take it from the perspective of the mission of Jesus.
The subject of His proclamation are the poor and the captives… and mission after all is how we relate to the reality to the people.” May this serve as a challenge to me in doing my mission with the people in the margins.
Sr. Ivy B. Bayno, OND-MN