Missionary Society of St Paul
A New Beginning
- Fr Lonnie Borg mssp
Fr Lonnie Borg was one of the first Paulist Missionaries in the Philippines. He embarked on his new mission after years of ministry in Pakistan, accompanied by Fr Ivano Burdian from Australia.
Someone once asked me why students are so undisciplined and unable to pay attention during a fifty minute class. After reflecting I answered, “Because they cannot take the remote control and change their teacher.” We live in a culture of constant change, of fast food, of the disposable, globalization and internet. Everything is instantaneous and fast.
In 1998 I arrived in the Philippines for one year of study. The following year I was assigned to be one of the first members of the Philippine mission. After spending years in Pakistan, this was not easy for me. I had to go against this mentality of doing things my way in order to get instant results. I had to go against the flow, and let God lead the way. In other words, this means learning to be patient and discreet, ready to serve, growing in solidarity and discovering that the real meaning of love is the sincere gift of self. The words of the Book of Revelation 3:8. “I have opened a door in front of you, which no one can close,” were inspiring to me at this moment. I moved on, knowing that what is in part hidden now, shall in the end become clear.
A whole new world opened up for me since I arrived in the Philippines. This experience helped me to grow in my relationship with God and prayer, understand myself as a person, develop relationships with others and face new challenges of mission. These last four years have provided me the living experience of working among people in a new culture with a new language and given me a deeper appreciation of our future as Paulist missionaries.
My present assignment is chaplaincy at the Polytechnic University of the Philippines, Manila. Working with others as a team in Campus Ministry gives me the opportunity to journey with many young people in their search for God. Filipinos are highly spiritual people, and they want to understand who they are and to discover their call in life. The young we work with bless us, and it is a joy to experience the life and energy among the team in and outside campus. I am enjoying my life and working as a Paulist missionary.
I thank God for all the people whose gifts of life and presence have helped me to come to know the Lord and the joy of serving in the Church as a missionary priest.
"I follow you wherever you go"