A Christmas with a Difference
I made it back from India in time to celebrate Thanksgiving with my family and start preparing for the Advent season. During my visit to India, I was profoundly touched at the enormous difference our missionary priests and sisters are making in the Mission of Daman. I hiked to the top of a mountain with 600 young adults to make a pilgrimage to the statue of the Blessed Mother. I wished you could have experienced with me how it felt to celebrate Mass in candlelight with 600 young adults; most of them new Christians!
These young adults stood up in groups professing  their love fo r Jesus in 5 different  languages! When I commented to Father Seby (the Superior of the Missionaries of St. Francis Xavier order, who is in charge of the Mission of Daman) about the huge numbe
r of young adults participating in this pilgrimage, Father Seby said, "you should have been here in May. We had 20,000 people: young and old! We had 7 different stations to celebrate Mass!!!"
While on my trip, I was also blessed with the opportunity to meet the many children that we are helping with our Christmas Miracle Appeal. These are the children that come from all over the mission to go to school, and I was so happy to see them! These children are so excited, so filled with joy, at the prospect of having a special Christmas meal again. They could not stop talking about the small present they had also received last year - thanks to your overwhelming support of our mission. These things are not much to us - a little chicken, a small gift amounting to only $1.00 - but to the boys and girls at these schools it means the world, and remains something they think about all year long. Together, we are making a difference. Help us now to give them the same special experience of Christ's love this year!
Speaking of making a difference, I take this liberty to share with you a Christmas reflection from Father Joseph Salema, head of the Pastoral Institute in Goa, India. He shared with me the ' 7 Ways to Make this a Christmas with a Difference'. The reflection has some unique Indian flavour but definitely very much applicable to all of us here in the United States. There are points for reflection for each of the 7 things which can help your advent preparation.
On behalf of all of us here at Catholic World Mission, the hundreds of missionary priests, religious sisters, and bishops from around the world (whose work with the poor you support), from the hearts of the thousands of people I met during my visit to India who asked me to send their deepest appreciation, and from all the people you've helped across the globe as a loyal and generous supporter of Catholic World Mission, I wish you and yours a very merry Christmas and a joyous New Year. Thank you in advance for your support. Let's make this a Christmas with a Difference!
Yours in Christ,

Praying for you is part of our mission - whether you send
 in  y our prayer intentions by mail, online, over the phone or by e-mail we wil l lift you up in prayer. We reserve a special time each week to ask God to bless you abundantly.

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