Experiencing God's presence through mission

FOCUS is a Catholic collegiate outreach whose mission is to share the hope and joy of the gospel with college and university students.

Jul 06, 2018

Sabahan Kevin Noel Andrew shares his experience in Kolkata with FOCUS missionary
FOCUS is a Catholic collegiate outreach whose mission is to share the hope and joy of the gospel with college and university students. Trained in Church teaching, prayer, sacred Scripture, evangelisation and discipleship, FOCUS missionaries encounter students in friendship where they are, inviting them into a personal relationship with Jesus Christ and accompanying them as they pursue lives of virtue and excellence. Through Bible studies, outreach events, mission trips and one-onone discipleship, missionaries inspire and build up students in the faith, sending them out to spread the good news and to live out the Great Commission.

Three weeks of experiencing Kolkata with the FOCUS missionary was an eye opener for me! We had heard about how India was like but then you can’t imagine it until you experience it yourself.

I’m very blessed for being able to experience it first-hand. Franco Cahilap and I went through a lot of challenges before going to India. Fundraising and sponsorship were not easy tasks. But with God’s guidance, it was somewhat easy! To be honest, other than experiencing God’s presence through the mission, I got to know people from all over the world! America, China, Mexico, Poland, UK, Japan, Phillipines and more! These people opened my heart to see God’s grace. The surprising thing was, not all of them were Christians. Some were Buddhists and Atheists. But God is good and He brings goodness together!

I would like to express my thanks to Deacon Adrian Ng for setting us up with Martha Griswold to join FOCUS as a group. It was such a pleasure to meet each and everyone of you and I will never forget the friendship that we have forged. The talks given by Gabe McHaffie, Andrew Collins and Claire Hendee were also meaningful and helpful in our journey of faith.

I would like to thank Philip Thomas for sharing a little bit about Kolkata. I will never forget the crazy bus and tuktuk ride, “the nod” that everyone gives after you give them a smile, the spiritual conversation with Sean every tea break and our friendship, even though we just met for a week. You inspired me and Sean to do good. I connected so much with Sonu, Ramu, Khanu, Gholu, Kalu, Terence, Jacob and others for the next two weeks. Nabo Jibon (one of the homes to do volunteering) gave me so much joy and love. Just like Philip said, they help us more than we could help them. I see Jesus in them!

Being in Kolkata also taught me most about unconditional love. The Kolkata I went to a month ago is different from the ‘Calcutta’ of Mother Teresa. She inspired me to preach the gospel not just by words but also by example.

Special thanks also to my family and friends for supporting us through fundraising, sponsors and prayers! Just as the Bible said, ‘Truly I tell you, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me.’

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