Easter is a time of rebirth!
The literal rebirth of Christ’s Resurrection, of course, and also the rebirth of hope for the human race that it brought. It also comes in the springtime, when new life is flowering all around us.
When Sister Jocelyn “Joji” Fenix, MM arrived in the province of Darién in the Central American nation of Panama, she found people very much in need of a chance at renewal. Because of the problems so common in the developing world—poverty, exploitation, indifference by those in power—the people suffered from hunger, sickness, unemployment, and a loss of hope.
Sister Jocelyn is a medical doctor, and one of her first ministries was to see to the health of the people, many of whom are migrant farmers and few of whom have easy access to basic health care. Her work extends far beyond the examination room, however. “Health and healthful living involves so many areas of our life,” she says, “from the food and water we ingest, our lifestyle, the integration of our mind, body and spirit, our relationships within the human community and the whole community of life, the health of our earth and our environment.”
Sister has introduced the people in her community to a holistic approach to health. “I am primarily involved in health promotion through practicing alternative forms of health care, including Ayurvedic medicine, use of herbal medicinal plants, reflexology and massage. I promote healthy diets and organic vegetable gardens, and the raising and consumption of goat’s milk, free range chicken, cheese, etc.”
To help promote and carry out her efforts, Sister Jocelyn has recruited and helped to train Health Promoters—local people who can both assist with providing health care,
and spread the word that it is available.
You can see how rebirth and renewal are key themes of Sister Jocelyn’s ministry. It’s also seen in the work that she and the local people do to restore the local rainforests and plant life, which have been impacted by over-logging, over-development and climate change. The Pastoral Care Center maintains a farm that preserves almost 100 acres of native rainforest, and a seedling bank to preserve and restore local trees, flowers, and plants.
YOUR GIFT will help Sister Jocelyn and all of our Sisters continue to do their great mission work!
Easter is a time for renewal, and that renewal is often brought by people like Sister Jocelyn, who dedicates her life to it through her work… and you, who enable her to do it through your kind support. Your friendship is a blessing!