This month we highlight Mike Garr, a Maryknoll lay missioner since 2017. Mike works in the catering department at the Marianist Technical Institute (MTI), in Mombasa. Mike teaches and mentors students to become self-employed, enabling them to lead lives of respect, dignity and resourcefulness for their family and their community.
Mike shares how he became more than a teacher:
Just four months into my ministry as a Catering instructor, I met an eighteen year old young man who wanted to become a chef. I decided to sponsor him as to enable him to learn a skill at the Marianist Technical Institute where I teach. As time went on this young man began to open up to me about the events in his life and I felt comfortable to mentor him through testimonies from my 63 years of life. I became his guardian father and he my son. I am blessed that once again I have been given this role as I cherished being the father of my three children.
During the pandemic this year Abdalla has taken it upon himself to start a small business which enables him to earn enough to separate himself from depending on others. It was a big decision and risk for him, but we both agreed that he needs to take this step faithfully. I glean in pride for him. Similar as to when my children deserted to college, leaving me with the desire of wanting to hold on to their dependence. But I have to confess of the joy I had shopping for all the needs for his home. I am grateful that God has provided me the means and desire to do so.
I appreciate my community’s acceptance, witnessed by the multitude of welcoming greetings. Mzungu (white person), Mzee (respected elderly man), Brother Mike, Father Mike, Old Man, Papa, Sir, Kumakucha and Mr. Mike to name a few. And from all those within my community that God has brought forth to challenge and transform me. It has provided me with a better understanding of how we are all different and how our cultural differences comprise our uniqueness and beauty.
Thank you for your generous support and walking beside us, as a companion in mission!
This month we ask that you share your story of compassion and philanthropic support for Maryknoll Lay Missioners. Please tell your friends and loved ones, in-person or on social media, about how YOU make it possible for our missioners to continue sharing God’s Love and bringing hope to the communities they serve in Africa, Asia and the Americas.
Please continue to hold us in your prayers, as we hold you in ours.