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Five new Maryknoll missioners (from left): Gregg Garrity; Julie Lawler; Sister Rolande Kahindo, MM; Brenda Seymour; and Jillian Foster.

OSSINING, NY – On Saturday, Dec. 14, 2019, four Maryknoll lay missioners and one Maryknoll sister will celebrate the beginning of their mission journeys in a Joint Mission Sending Ceremony. The celebration will be held at 2:30 p.m. in the Annunciation Chapel of the Maryknoll Sisters in Ossining, New York.

This Sending Ceremony marks the end of a 12-week orientation program, which the new missioners undertook together as they prepared for cross-cultural ministries in four countries around the world.

The heads of all four Maryknoll entities (Sisters, Fathers and Brothers, Lay Missioners and Affiliates) will participate in the ceremony. Christina Lamas, executive director of the National Federation for Catholic Youth Ministry, will be the celebration’s featured speaker.

During the Sending, the new missioners will be “called forth” for their new mission region, receive mission crosses and express their commitment “to witness the Good News of Jesus Christ, in solidarity with our brothers and sisters who are marginalized and oppressed.” They commit themselves “to care for the earth, our common home, and to respond in service to help create a more just and compassionate world.”

Ted Miles, the executive director of Maryknoll Lay Missioners, said that the new missioners have a deep faith. “They trust in the slow, patient process of allowing God’s presence to transform us. Like many of us, they have an urgent desire to birth a different world that more fully reflects God’s love.”

He added, “Each one’s commitment to mission is born out of this trust and their faithfulness to the Holy Spirit’s urging to love more deeply. I wholeheartedly believe they will carry God’s promise wherever they go.”

The new lay missioners range in age from 23 to 64. They are committing to three and a half years of service. They will depart around New Year for their respective mission sites, where they will receive extensive in-country language training and cultural orientation before they begin their ministry assignments.

Maryknoll lay missioners work with those at the margins for a more just, compassionate and sustainable world in Africa, Asia and the Americas. They serve in a wide range of ministries that include health care and health promotion, education and leadership development, justice and peace, faith formation and pastoral care, and sustainable development.

Started in 1912, Maryknoll Sisters strive to make God’s love visible by devoting their lives in service overseas to those who are poor, ailing and marginalized.

The five new missioners are:

  • Jillian Foster from Syracuse, New York, going to Haiti.
  • Greg Garrity from Middlebury, Connecticut, going to Kenya.
  • Sister Rolande Kahindo, MM, from the Democratic Republic of Congo, going to East Timor.
  • Julie Lawler from Austin, Texas, going to Cambodia.
  • Brenda Seymour from Hudson, Massachusetts, going to Kenya.

Click here for a 7-minute video of the Maryknoll Lay Missioners Class of 2019


Maryknoll Lay Missioners
Compelled by faith to engage with people across cultures and ethnicities, Maryknoll lay missioners live, love and work with communities on the margins to promote active nonviolence and healing.