For the second year in a row, Family Missions of Valencia organized its Holy Week Missions in the parish of the Valencian Martyrs. These are a different kind of missions, as Sandra and Guille explain, since in city missions, “we are more hesitant, embarrassed and afraid,” and plus, “city people are busy with another type of activity in the moment you stop them, and when you stop them, you cut off their activity…” In any event, as Family Missionaries have realized, “in either case, children are the ‘awesome instrument’ of God.”
Sandra and Guille, accompanied by their daughter María, have been doing missions with “Mission Family” for seven years. The Lord always makes himself present in a special way during missions, and these in particular were marked by “communion among the new missionary families and how the Lord sought them out, came out to meet them and surprised them, and they have come out more in love with him and very eager to do it again.”
What has been special about these missions?
Normally we are used to doing missions outside of Valencia and spending the night away from home, but for the last two years they have been “at home,” which makes them different. We have gone out to do missions in the streets of Valencia, and the mission has also been very much within the group, as these were the first missions for many new families who came to be missionaries.
What have the missions consisted of?
The services took place in the Regnum Christi parish, Valencian Martyrs. There we helped out with everything our parish priest, Fr. Cortina, LC, asked us to do. But we also had moments of camaraderie in ECYD’s Club Faro and a day of fellowship and formation in Vall de Flors.
Are city people very different from small-town people when you approach them to talk about God?
Where they are from doesn’t matter at all, neither to them nor to us. We are more hesitant, embarrassed or afraid in the city, but at the same time, that makes the challenge more exciting.
City people are busy with another type of activity in the moment you stop them, and when you stop them, you cut off their activity… This is a difficulty from the outset, but sometimes that becomes an advantage because you startle them and they pay attention. In either case, we have found that children are the “awesome instrument” of God.
In the particular case of Valencia, what is the difference between missions in a parish assigned to Regnum Christi and another parish that isn’t?
In a Regnum Christi parish, you are “at home,” and you know the pastor well, which kick-starts teamwork. On the other hand, in small towns it is very satisfying to give people the possibility of participating in services to which no other priest would go if ours didn’t. Also, getting to know Regnum Christi awakens questions and curiosity. The joy is different, but present in both cases.
What impacted you the most in this missionary experience?
Communion among the new missionary families and how the Lord sought them out, came out to meet them and surprised them. They have come out of missions more in love with him and very eager to do it again.
Could you tell us an anecdote that you experienced with the people you worked with that touched your heart?
What is most exciting is when the Lord allows you to have the joy of realizing that you are an instrument. When you see people you have stopped on the street, who you know would not have accompanied Jesus in his Passion had you not stopped them, that is something very great. This makes you wonder why you stopped this person and not that one, why you said to them what you did… The answer is always the same: It is he who is at work in you… You just give your “yes,” and he does all the rest.