Love must act, as Light must shine, as Fire must burn.
When I was asked to summarize my two weeks of training, what was my most important learning, this quote from Holy Cross Monastery was the first thought to come to my mind.
We spent so much time learning important lessons about living cross-culturally, a great deal of which I think I will only appreciate fully after I've been in my host country for a few months, but it was only on the day of reflection and self-care in the monastery that I had a chance to process what this would mean for me, and for those around me in the year to come.
Love must act, but what actions best reflect that love? The other repeated message from training was listening, listening with humility and the willingness to understand where another person was coming from. I know well from my friendships that listening like that, without an agenda, is an act of love.
The academic training wasn't the only bit of new information I received during the two weeks of training. The head of our program, David Copley, pulled me aside to let me know that I'd been re-assigned to the Northern Philippines, instead of the Southern Diocese. As of now, my new assignment is Easter College, in Baguio City. It's a slight change for me in terms of my expectations and preparation work, but I am very glad I'm staying within the Philippines as a whole, and among Team Asia moving forward.
And for even more good news, I came home and found out that I'd topped 5,000 in fundraising! Now as soon as my church sends the money in to the DFMS, they'll be willing to fly me out. Somehow that makes it all the more real.
In case anyone reading this blog wishes to contribute and hasn't heard yet, the easiest way to support this year of mission is to go to www.christepiscopal.com, my home church's website. On the left side of the main page is a button marked Donate, clicking that takes you to our online donation form. If you put Margaret or Young Adult Service Corps in the comments box after you've filled out your information, it will get put into my fund and sent on it's merry way from there!