Wednesday, September 29, 2010

"The Catching Force"

There is a house of Missionaries of Charity sisters a few miles from where I live. Every morning after Mass, they pray the "Radiating Christ" prayer. It ends
"Stay with me and then I shall begin to shine as You shine, so to shine as to be a light to others; the light, O Jesus, will be all from You; none of it will be mine: it will be You shining on others through me. Let me thus praise You in the way You love best: by shining on those around me. Let me preach You without preaching, not by words, but by my example, by the catching force, the sympathetic influence of what I do, the evident fullness of the love my heart bears to You."
Office evangelization often includes this "preaching without preaching, but by example." In such circumstances, how can "the catching force" be animated? How can office work be done with "evident fullness" of love?

Monday, September 27, 2010

Here's the story ...

In August 2006, I finished a summer as a Catholic missionary on a journey from Maine to Washington DC. But when the journey finished, how could I channel the "missionary knack"?

I continued my graduate studies, working as a calculus teacher, researching bus schedule optimizing, and helping with my parish's high school youth group. In contrast to the summer when I had focused on many brief opportunities to be a witness for Christ (sometimes as simple as a few seconds to hand on a Rosary), I now had the challenge to be a witness within relationships that might stretch months or longer.

The following spring, I received my masters degree and began work as a mathematician for a large university research center a few months later. It was within this time that my desire to be an "office apostle" and an "undercover missionary" was cultivated. Throughout the Church's history, missionaries have undertaken adventures to many distant lands. What would my adventure be like in the "distant land" of a research laboratory hallway? Could I embrace comparatively mundane moments as opportunities to grow closer to Him? Could I share His Light without losing my job?