The Comboni Missionaries of the Heart of Jesus (mccj), faithful to the vocation they received, are committed to the Church’s mission and endeavor to be witnesses of the Gospel with an attitude of collaboration and dialogue with other cultures and religions.
In this way, we are promoters of a world that is more just and fraternal. As an Institute that is exclusively missionary within the Roman Catholic Church, we welcome young men who want to dedicate their lives in service to the Kingdom of Life in the areas of our world where the signs of death abound.
The Comboni Missionary Priest dedicates his energy to evangelization, working for the salvation and integral liberation of people. He learns from, loves, and respects the culture of the country in which he is sent. He helps form local leaders and animates the local churches with a missionary spirit.
The Comboni Missionary Brother realizes his vocation by building up and developing individuals and the Christian family. He does this through his profession, or through pastoral service.
We are consecrated Brothers and Priests from many countries: an expression of the pilgrim church, constantly moving and growing, encountering diverse peoples and cultures. Though the missionary does spend some time in his home country, he is open to being sent wherever the Lord leads him, ultimately finding his “home” in the Word of God.
The missionary witness is translated for the Comboni Missionary in a particular way of living, according to a precise methodology, concrete and valiant. The fundamental elements of this way of life come from the words of St. Daniel Comboni. Here are some of his quotes:
“To Save Africa through Africa…”
St. Daniel Comboni had his sights on the poor of Africa; he saw them as marginalized and the poorest people of his time. He wanted them to take an active part in their future and destiny. We live this phrase today because it signifies having respect for culture, religion, and for the human groups to which we are sent, wherever that may be. We manifest a great confidence in the people and respect for their dignity, so that they may become protagonists of their own process of liberation and evangelization.
“To Make Common Cause with the People…”
This phrase signifies having a life style that is simple, to share the joys and sorrows with those considered “least” and to be prophetic voices for those who have no voice. Making common cause with the poor implies sharing in their destiny, which can at times lead to persecution and even martyrdom. The missionary example is the first and strongest witness over words and shows the desire to “live with” and not simply “visit” the people to whom we are sent.
“To Evangelize as a Community…”
This signifies living as a “cenacle of apostles,” another phrase of St. Daniel to emphasize that we do not only witness by ourselves alone but even more authentically and powerfully as a community, united in prayer and in work and searching together for the most effective service to the people. Being communities that are international is itself a challenge but an added dimension as well of our Catholic witness.
In order to grow in the love of God and of one another and to better respond to their missionary vocation, the members of the North American Province strive to grow as a community of brothers by developing fraternal relationships based on sincere communication and mutual understanding that will bring them to appreciate one another as God-given gifts. They seek to provide an environment conducive to both effective witness in the world and personal growth of each member.
Because of his gifts and talents, each member has a unique role to play in the life of the local community. For the sake of the community, each missionary seeks to develop his personal, spiritual, and professional potential to the extent that he is able. He strives to participate actively, generously and fully in all aspects of the community, while understanding that specific situations recognized by the community may prevent some from complete participation.
Each community strives to be a place of prayer and sees that each member has adequate time and space for personal prayer. It gives special emphasis to the weekly community celebration of the Eucharist and other appropriate times of prayer.
Believing that the witness of community life is itself an effective act of evangelization, the missionaries foster their relationships with one another to create an environment of openness, trust and acceptance. They strive to be an open and welcoming community by providing warm hospitality to visiting Comboni Missionaries, family, friends, supporters, and the poor.
The community maintains a simple lifestyle in line with the vow of poverty and the values of the Kingdom.