Reflections
Rev. Mario M. Powell, SJ

Week 48  – October 26, 2015
Entered -- August 2003
Took Vows -- August 2005
Ordained -- June 2014
  
Fr. Powell is Director of REACH at Regis High School in New York City.
  
"What makes me happy to be a religious today?"
 
I had the great opportunity to pray with His Holiness Pope Francis during vespers at St. Patrick Cathedral in New York City. He spoke about the importance of joy and remembrance.
 
From the very beginning of my discernment about living the life of a Jesuit I realized that you attract more with honey than with vinegar. I went to a Jesuit high school that had both types of Jesuits. Those Jesuits who made this way of life attractive were full of joy, life, and energy. I wanted that way life for myself.
 
Pope Francis also spoke about remembrance of the road that we have travelled. Where have we seen Christ? Where have we encountered the honey? Sometimes in the midst of my work this question can seem more profoundly obscure than it need be. There are other times in which the memories of my journey make me keenly aware of where Christ currently is in my life. I work with a number of families who are immigrants to this country. Their hopes and dreams are accented in Spanish, Portuguese, Polish, Arabic, and English. One family came to meet with me about their son's choices for school. I was tired, running late for another appointment, and the mother began to cry. Her son's eyes welled up with tears and his father grabbed his hands. The mother began telling me about their story and their discernment to leave home. They left home with a dream that their son would not have to work as desperately hard as they have done. As I tried to figure out something to say to her in order to soothe over the situation she began to smile. It was then that I realized that these were tears of joy! Mom had been overcome with such joy knowing that her son would probably attend a Jesuit high school. This woman and her husband had spent their entire lives giving themselves away for the sake of another person.
 
These tears of joy cried by a migrant woman, make the face of Christ less opaque. I see Jesus as a migrant joyfully giving himself away.
 
Joy and remembrance are at the heart of gratitude. Gratitude in turn is at the heart of a Christian vocation. When I remember the blessings God has given me I am sometimes overcome with the tears-tears of joy. When I encounter Christ in the immigrant families that I serve I am filled with joy that I can see Christ in this way. When I remember these blessings there is only one real response-generosity. I feel compelled to give what I have been freely given away.


Rev. Charles A. Frederico, SJ
Br. Christopher Derby, SJ
Rev. Thomas E. Roach, SJ
Mr. Kevin C. Hughes, SJ
Rev. Mario M. Powell, SJ
Rev. Thomas R. Slon, SJ
Rev. Donald M. Ward, SJ
Mr. Jason G. Downer, SJ
Rev. Christopher Fronk, SJ
Rev. John C. Wronski, SJ
Rev. Francis X. McAloon, SJ
Rev. John P. Bucki, SJ
Rev. Christopher G. Llanos, SJ
Rev. Ugo R. Nacciarone, SJ
Mr. Kevin C. Spinale, SJ
Rev. James W. Moore, SJ
Rev. Raymond J. Donaldson, SJ
Rev. James J. Miracky, SJ
Rev. George T. Williams, SJ
Rev. Cesare Campagnoli, SJ
Rev. Anthony P. SooHoo, SJ
Rev. William E. Stempsey, SJ
Rev. Bruce R. Bavinger, SJ
Mr. Patrick C. Nolan
Rev. William R. Campbell, SJ
Rev. Ignatius "Hadi" Sasmita, SJ
Rev. Brian Conley, SJ
Rev. Anthony J. Azzarto, SJ
Mr. Timothy W. O'Brien, SJ
Br. Jonathan J. Stott, SJ
Rev. Michael F. Tunney, SJ
Rev. Joseph J. Hayden, SJ
Rev. Thomas J. Kenny, SJ
Rev. Joseph M. McShane, SJ
Rev. Mark Hallinan, SJ
Rev. David J. Collins, SJ
Rev. Thomas M. Simisky, SJ
Rev. Daniel M. Ruff, SJ
Rev. Thomas L. Sheridan, SJ
Rev. Matthew S. Monnig, SJ
Rev. Charles L. Moutenot, SJ
Rev. Andrew N. Downing, SJ
Rev. Herbert B. Keller, SJ
Rev. Ramon A. Salomone, SJ
Br. Robert L. Carson, SJ
Rev. Francis X. Clooney, SJ
Mr. Vincent J. Marchionni, SJ
Rev. William A. Barry, SJ
Rev. John P. Mulreany, SJ
Rev. Bruce T. Morrill, SJ
Rev. Eugene M. Geinzer, SJ
Rev. Joseph G. Marina, SJ



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