Rev. Eugene M. Geinzer, SJ
Week 2 - Dec. 8, 2014
Entered -- September 1962
Took Vows -- September 1964
Ordained -- June 1974
Fr. Geinzer lives and works on the frontier in Beijing, China, teaching art and architecture.
I never dreamed how the great world-vision of Ignatius' meditation on the Incarnation would sweep me up in its tidal surge. Though, as a child, I always pleaded with my father to find a new road to "drive home," I did not then foresee what wild new paths I was praying for.
And so here I am traveling in a country I never ever thought for a moment of visiting! And, do I travel! I ride camels with our Beijing Center students in the Taklimakan Desert. We break bread together as a group on the sand dunes. I dance (awkwardly) the stupendous dances of the Tibetan nomads on their grasslands, and hear their fiercely beautiful a cappella mountain songs. Together with my architecture students we measure, photograph and document the Dai people's houses across the river from Myanmar. I sleep on rush mats under warm quilts in the Hanis' mountain adobe huts, where there is no heat. I have learned to eat eel, eggplant with sausage, jiaozi and green beans, all over rice. I still wonder whether I'll ever have a dull day.
When I asked my father to take me new ways I never thought that my "big" Father was listening to my prayers! And most astounding of all, He showed me that these Chinese are my dear friends, my brothers and sisters! These are the moments that make me grateful and happy to be a religious.