I left my homeland on November 15, 2018, flying from Warsaw Chopin Airport to the Jakarta which is the capital of Indonesia. The trip included two stopovers in London and Singapore. The carrier was Singapore Airlines.
The feelings that accompanied me on this trip to Asia were the delight over the various cultures. I watched carefully the behavior of new people - mainly Asian - their calmness, smiles and kindness.
Of course we live in the same world, but different philosophies of life can be distinguished at once. One of the interesting places at the airport in Singapore was a prayer room for all beliefs. In Warsaw there was a chapel for Catholics, in which the priests celebrated the Eucharist. Here in Asia there is a great variety of culture, cuisine, religion, etc.
The temperature in the capital of Indonesia on Friday 16 November was 36 Celsius. The geographical and atmospheric conditions strongly affect the functioning of the body. After lunch, I had to rest to regain my strength after more than 20 hours of my travel.
In the evening, I went to the chapel in our SVD house to meditate and pray to God who is the Author of our lives. I stopped at the words of today's Gospel: "Whoever seeks to preserve his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life will keep it" (Luke 17:33). True, we give our lives when we leave the country of our origins, relatives and friends, but at the same time we gain a hundred times more. For instance, brothers and sisters whom God the Father puts in our way.
At dinner, I met a young SVD priest who also starts his new mission in Argentina. I did understand what he is now experiencing when he leaves his Flores island to evangelize Latin America. This is true spirituality and charism of the Society of Divine Word. I promised him my prayer and told him not to worry, because he would meet many kind people there. Moreover, I will soon take his place on the Flores island.
Prayers of SVD
May the darkness of sin
and the night of unbelief vanish before the light of the Word
and the Spirit of grace
and may the Heart of Jesus live
in the hearts of all people.
(Saint Arnold Janssen)