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Given the title "Pontifical" in 1922, the Pontifical Mission Societies have special responsibility in the Universal Church. They are under the direct canonical jurisdiction of the Pope, who, together with the entire body of Bishops, remind the faithful of their Baptismal call to mission, as they gather basic support for more than 1,150 mission dioceses in Asia, Africa, the Pacific Islands and Latin America.  The Pontifical Mission Societies include the Society for the Propagation of the Faith, the Missionary Childhood Association, the Society of St. Peter Apostle, and the Missionary Union of Priests and Religious. 

Giving Thanks for Faith PDF Print E-mail
Article Index
Giving Thanks for Faith
Starting this Month of Thanks - With Faith...
Thanks for Fervor for the Faith
Thankful for Our Family - In Mission!
Thankful - Close to Home or Half a World Away
Faith and Gratitude in Missionary Spirit
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It’s something we all do – count our blessings.  Topping the list is our faith, our Lord’s greatest gift to each one of us.  Another important blessing is the presence of missionaries.  In difficult and often dangerous circumstances, missionaries reach out with the loving heart of our Lord.  Missionaries like Sister Adelina.  On the island of Nias in Indonesia, she and other Sisters of Charity of Our Lady Mother of Mercy staff an orphanage and a school.  They also regularly visit a home for handicapped and disabled children and young people. 

Count your blessings today.  And don’t forget the blessing of sharing in the work of missionaries like Sister Adelina by your prayers – and your financial help through the Society for the Propagation of the Faith.

… And for missionaries!


All across the world, in 1,150 mission dioceses, missionaries are bringing the love of Christ and His Gospel of hope to those most in need. Your support through the Society for the Propagation of the Faith has helped countless souls in remote areas to come to know the faith and to build Christ’s Church. These beneficiaries are grateful for the financial support we provide and for the Good News we share…

Imagine the gratitude expressed by St. Joseph’s Mission in Sanyati, Zimbabwe, in the diocese of Harare, where drought and poor harvests are making it difficult to feed the children. They recently received loving assistance through the Pontifical Mission Societies (Missionary Childhood Association) to renovate their child care center, provide necessary resources, and bring faith into young lives by extension.

Let us take time then to give thanks for faith… faith that we have received… faith that we nurture… and faith shared with others, especially through the spread of the Gospel through our Catholic missionaries.

We can continue to pray, share our faith and support  that growing faith in the Missions - half a world away.

Starting this Month of Thanks – With Faith…

As we begin November, the Month of Thanks, how can we take the opportunity to be grateful for our faith in our daily lives? Perhaps we can take time for a nearby pilgrimage, make a special devotion to the Blessed Virgin Mary, or pray the World Mission Rosary.

Consider this example from the young faithful in Arequipa, Peru who participated in a pilgrimage to the Shrine of Our Lady of Chapi, about 37 miles from the city, to prepare for the Feast of All Saints on November 1st. Thousands of young people arrived at the Marian Shrine the evening before, foregoing secular celebrations of Halloween, and had moments of prayer and fun that included a music concert, a dance show, confessions, a great tribute to the Virgin and a concluding Mass.

This was the third year that over 4,000 lived the “Youth Festival for Faith and Life,” which began in the Year of Faith. His Exc. Mgr. Javier Del Rio Alba, Archbishop of Arequipa, described this event that took place at the Marian Shrine and prayed for the participants, “Therefore, we will pray for our young people and ask the maternal protection of the Virgin of Chapi, in the certainty that she more than anyone else can bring us to Jesus Christ.”

-Taken from Agenzia Fides (www.fides.org), 10/31/2014

Thanks for Fervor for the Faith

As so much holiday anticipation abounds, are we thankful for our faith and our families with the same amount of fervor? ....With religious fervor…. fervor for our faith? Two promises of devotion to the Sacred Heart of Jesus are that lukewarm souls shall become fervent and that fervent souls shall quickly mount to high perfection.

Consider the youngest Catholic Church in the entire world – in Mongolia. After only 20 years, the Church is now growing in a place fertile to the faith after decades of Communist rule. One family, headed by convert Gantulga, joined by his wife and children, had their lives transformed by Catholic missionaries - like Bishop Wenceslao Padilla - on fire with the faith. Gantulga says, “When I started going to church and feeling how God’s mercy reaches me, I felt that I had to receive Baptism. Now I can say I am a better father and a better husband because I have received God’s mercy and can be merciful to others.”

This faith is alive and growing in mission countries, and gives us a reminder to be fervent about our own faith, especially on Thanksgiving. Our thanks and our generosity keep that faith on fire – in our hearts and half a world away.

Thankful for Our Family – In Mission!

Sometimes the Thanksgiving holiday can be so busy! There is always so much to do and to prepare, but when we finally sit down with our families this year and look across the table, we must be grateful for one another. Think of the children in an orphanage in Nias, one of the islands of Indonesia, looking across a table at their new family - no longer orphans, through the loving care of the local Sisters and through the generous support of the Society for the Propagation of the Faith. The Sisters help the little ones realize that they are not alone and that they are loved – especially by our Lord.

The Sisters also run a home for disabled children. The smiles and joy on their faces reveal that the “Good News” of God’s great love for each one of us is heard and understood by every child in the Sisters’ care.

The Sisters in Nias, and the children they care for, along with priests, religious and lay catechists throughout the Missions give prayerful thanks for your support - and they also remember your intentions and those of all their benefactors in those prayers.

Thankful - Close to Home or Half a World Away

How long does it take us to get to our parishes on Thanksgiving? Are we grateful for the opportunity to attend Mass regularly and increase our faith?

Most of the parishes in the mission diocese of Chikmagalur in South India reside in so vast an area that many people are unable to reach their main church week by week. But wherever there are clusters of families, prayer services are conducted on Sundays, and when a priest can reach the area, Mass is celebrated in small village chapels. The needs of family and children are met by local priests and Sisters, and the youngest in our mission family there learn about Jesus and His great love for each of us.

Chikmagalur is just one of the 1,150 dioceses relying on your prayerful support. The prayers of the poor, who are supported by the Society for the Propagation of the Faith, are those of gratitude for all who reach out in faith and love with prayers.

Faith and Gratitude in Missionary Spirit

The week before Thanksgiving, we had the pleasure of a visit from our Pontifical Mission Societies National Director in Nigeria. Reverend Father George Olusegun Ajana described an annual national event for the Missionary Childhood Association, the “Mission Congress for Children” that lasts for a whole week and brings together young people from all the diverse dioceses in the country to intermingle and share their varied customs, dances, songs - and their common faith. Mission activities are very strongly promoted.

Hearing the stories of all the good work being done in Father Ajana’s country, helping to bring mission awareness to all areas of the globe – starting with all the dioceses of Nigeria, we remember that we are all missionaries – all Baptized in Christ! Whether we remain at home and offer our prayers and financial sacrifices, or we travel to remote areas to spread the Good News; whether we live in a mission diocese, like Nigeria, or have been mission independent for some time, like the United States, we all have something to offer to share our faith.

We can take time, in this month of thanks, to be grateful for our missionary spirit!

ND Small Ajana IMG 4781

National Directors - Very Reverend Andrew Small, OMI from the United States with Reverend Father George Olesegun Ajana, visiting from Nigeria.