Gift of Mary Missionaries
Gift of Mary missionaries welcome women as they are, offering dignity, protection, and support. Under the guidance of our Blessed Mother Mary, we live and pray together in community, while striving to build meaningful relationships and work towards trust with all whom the Lord sends our way. We are here to welcome, protect, heal, educate, and evangelize the most vulnerable women of Pittsburgh.
WHO IS A GIFT OF MARY MISSIONARY?
We are missionaries who love God and serve his poor. Modeled after Mother Teresa’s own shelter in Rome called “Gift of Mary”, we seek to spread the love of God to the poor in Pittsburgh by serving vulnerable and homeless women in need.
We do this mainly by our ministry of accompaniment to women staying at our Gift of Mary emergency shelter and our daytime Women’s Center. We also serve by helping to provide meals at the Red Door, our day shelter, and serving at Faustina’s Gate, our clothing pantry for the homeless. We assist at Brother Andre’s Cafe, a ministry designed to provide employment opportunities for adults with intellectual and developmental disabilities. Finally, we assist in the evangelization efforts of Divine Mercy Parish, by teaching the faith to the poor through Bible studies and RCIA, and occasionally reaching out through street evangelization.
All of this is done in a vibrant atmosphere of prayer, formation, and community living. We seek first to receive Christ through prayer and daily mass, and then to serve Christ in our poor brothers and sisters who come to us. Missionaries are encouraged to live a life of abundant self-giving, while being given the tools and resources to make this a life of balance, with time for relaxation and self-growth.
Our time on mission is given over to the Lord. We live in a spirit of surrender to the ways he wants to transform us in our time as missionaries.
Rule of Life
Having a balanced rule of life enables us to work diligently for Christ's kingdom on earth while growing spiritually together as missionaries.
"The Eucharist and the poor are inseparable. This is not anything new for the Church, for we can clearly see it in the Gospels. The One who said, 'This is my body' is the same one who said, 'I was hungry and you gave me to eat'”.
- St. Teresa of Calcutta
As Gift of Mary missionaries, we commit to these elements of the spiritual life:
1. Daily Mass
2. Daily Holy Hour
3. Confession at least once a month
4. Regular Spiritual Direction
5. Monthly personal Spiritual Day
6. Praying Liturgy of the Hours once a day as a team
7. Team Retreat once a year
As Gift of Mary missionaries, we commit to these elements of community life:
1. Weekly one-on-one check-in
with the Mission Integration Coordinator to evaluate personal
integration and emotional well-being.
2. Weekly formation meeting
to grow in our spiritual lives.
3. Weekly house meeting
to grow in our relationships as missionaries living in community.
4. Weekly Chores for our House
To show our gratitude for the living spaces we are provided with.
5. Team Fun
Once a week, our team takes time to relax and have fun.
As Gift of Mary missionaries, we commit to these elements of personal integration:
1. Dating App Fast
We commit to forming deep, meaningful relationships with the people right in
front of us, rather than looking to form those connections through a screen.
2. Limiting Social Media
We limit our social media access to one hour per week to keep ourselves
grounded in the present moment.
3. Mental Health
We commit to taking care of our mental health, taking advantage of the
mental health resources available to us as needed.
4. Physical Health
We commit to taking care of our physical health, getting quality sleep,
exercise, and good nutrition so we can be our best when serving the poor.
We dress in a modest way so as to honor our
dignity as beloved daughters of the Father.
DUTIES OF A MISSIONARY
“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.’”Matthew 25:34-36