As we closed our time in Rome the Lord really tested our trust and showed us that we are on His time, not our own. He continued to place beautiful people in our path to reveal a little more of Himself to us and that they might pray for us as we head to Russia. We are constantly reminded that this is not about us but about the Lord and the people we encounter. Our last day in Rome we missed a train back to St. Peter’s square that put us in a tight squeeze to make our 7:00 train to Vienna. A little out of breath, dragging our bags behind us, and working up quite a sweat, we made our train which took us to Austria and we have been in Gaming now for four days.
While in Gaming we have again been incredibly blessed by the support we received from the families here, the teachers, and the LCI (Language and Catechetical Institute) Program. Jennifer Healy has helped us in structuring our retreat here by providing opportunities to learn about Russian culture, the Theology of Mission, and the Russian language. We are making our way through a New Evangelization series by Fr. Robert Baron as well and are taking Russian lessons with a LCI student, Olga, who has been very patient with us to say the least.
All of these opportunities to learn and to prepare for mission have gotten us extremely excited for our time in Russia. As we sat with Olga today practicing our Russian, the excitement we felt when we could spell out the words she was saying was comparable to the excitement a child feels when they successfully riding their bike for the first time. The Lord has mercifully multiplied our efforts to prepare for this mission and continues to fill us up this week. The children here in Gaming have also been a huge blessing as they bring so much joy to our time here and make us eager to meet the children in Magadan.
Along with these consolations, a theme from our time in Gaming so far has been a reality check. We have begun to realize what the Lord is asking of us this summer and it has been very humbling. As members of Regina Angelorum, “we realize that the fight against satan’s powers cannot be taken alone” (taken from the Regina Angelorum covenant). This is why God in His goodness has given us the gift of each other. Please continue to keep us in your prayers and pray for an outpouring of humility and faithfulness into our hearts this summer. Everyday we are each in a battle for our souls and the souls of those we love. In six days we leave to battle for the souls of our brothers and sisters in Russia. Please join us in prayer and in the Eucharist as we follow our Lady into battle of simply being Catholic- of fighting the good fight of faith! You all continue to be in our prayers.
Your Russia Mission Team