Friar Don Miller. OFM
I am a Franciscan priest. I spent my early years of ministry in New Mexico working among the Pueblo Native Americans and the Hispanics. In 1978 I began my years in academics working as a chaplain, faculty member, and administrator at various universities in the southwest and the midwest. I taught various course in theology, especially in my area of specialty which is moral theology. I have been the Vocation Director for the Province of Saint John the Baptist since 2003.
 
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Brother Colin King, O.F.M. reflects on his Jamaican experience

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Works of Mercy: “Then the king will say to those on his right, ‘Come, you who are blessed by my Father. Inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world. For I was hungry and you gave me food, I was thirsty and you gave me drink, a stranger and you welcomed me, naked and you clothed me, ill and you cared for me, in prison and you visited me.’” (Matt 25: 34-36) 

 

All of us who went on the Alternative Christmas Break had many opportunities to serve the bodily needs of our brothers and sisters in Jamaica. Within the Catholic tradition these are called the Corporal Works of Mercy: Feed the hungry, give drink to the thirsty, clothe the naked, shelter the homeless, visit the sick, visit the imprisoned, and bury the dead. Including Fr. Jim Bok and Fr. Bernard Younas as group members, we were able to do six of the seven works, missing only burying the dead, during our week in Jamaica. 

 

Blogcolin051113picWhat has struck me most as I have continued to reflect on my experience in Jamaica involves the discerning of my motivation for doing Corporal Works of Mercy. Before entering the Franciscans I was involved in a number of charitable events like soup kitchens, home repairs and working with youth. The purpose of doing these works is to extend God’s compassion and mercy to those in need. And yet I have to be honest and say that many times, these actions were either for my greater glory and not God’s or for the “warm and fuzzy” feeling I would get after doing volunteer work. Through the formation process I have learned to prayerfully discern the motivations of my actions and how they might help bring about the Reign of God. Which is after all, what all of us are trying to do.

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