ASIA/MONGOLIA - The essentiality of "whispered" faith

Saturday, 29 October 2022 evangelization   catechism   pontifical mission societies  

Ulan Batoor (Agenzia Fides) - Chamingerel, a 35-year-old Mongolian who currently coordinates the Catholic Pastoral Office of the Apostolic Prefecture of Ulaanbaatar, is an expert in the use of digital technologies and speaks several languages. As a Catholic baptism she chose the name of the 3rd-century Roman saint Rufina, who was martyred with her sister Seconda for not renouncing the faith in Christ. "I got to know the Catholic faith," says Rufina, "when I was still a student. A relative and his family invited me to attend my first Eucharistic celebration. I entered a parish for the first time. That was in 2004. I am still touched when I think back on it. I was struck by the words of the homily and in general by the welcoming atmosphere towards everyone. Today I can say that meeting Christians opened my eyes and heart ".
Today Rufina works in the pastoral office of the Apostolic Prefecture together with two other Mogolian
lay womenwho work as translators and catechists. "Working in coordinating the pastoral office is my contribution to the Church in Mongolia and an expression of my open heart. It is fulfilling to see how our office is a point of contact for all parishes and missionaries," said Rufina. "I see it very concretely," she adds, "when we organize courses for catechists from different parishes. On these occasions we really feel that we are one church united in Christ".
The Pastoral Office, which this year also received support from the Pontifical Society for the Propagation of the Faith, is a small office with various operational tasks ranging from the translation of ecclesiastical documents - precisely to meet the urgency of having texts in the local language - to the training of catechists (who are mostly young mothers and students), or even preparing meetings in the Prefecture, to communicating through social media and updating the website. The "heart" of each work remains the attention to the individual on his journey of faith. There are approximately 1,300 baptized Catholics in Mongolia out of a population of over 3 million.
"We must try to understand what is happening in the heart of a Mongolian who has received the Gospel". Many encounter Christianity after their sensibilities have been shaped by Buddhism and shamanism. It is therefore important that they bring the essence of Christianity with their hearts and their intelligence, also by creating spaces and opportunities to listen to the faithful and to understand what is going on in the depths of their person", explains Rufina, recalling the fundamental role of the missionaries in Mongolia. They are called to become "little seeds" and should be able to convey the essence of the faith
almost with a "whisper". "Sussurrare il Vangelo nella terra dell'eterno cielo blu" is therefore the title of the book written by the then Bishop and current Cardinal Giorgio Marengo, Apostolic Prefect of Ulaanbaatar. (EG) (Agenzia Fides, 29/10/2022)