I supporse I should start university studies I suggested Great was my

I supporse i should start university studies i

This preview shows page 75 - 77 out of 136 pages.

"I supporse I should start university studies." I suggested. Great was my disappointment when he sent me away to University, after telling me he was hoping to send me to New Guinea. It never occurred to me that my superiors were looking for missionary volunteers. I had become as humble as a door-mat and pliable as a plate of porridge. I still could not argue for myself. Having gained my Bachelor of Arts from University of Tasmania in 1978 as a part time student and full time teacher, I was called in again in 1979. This time I declared that I was free to do whatever they wished. I was chosen to go to Tonga with Br. Paul Nangle to take over a missionary high school at Vavau. I hope that is how you spell that tiny island in the Kingdom of Tonga. I was pleased, at last things were happening. New government in the order, men with vision. The Third World was calling us and they seemed to be
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listening and answering. Tonga here I come! It wasn’t Vietnam, but at least mission to the poor was returning to the Brothers. Before setting off overseas, it was necessary to do some cross-cultural preparation. Paul and I went to Sydney for most of 1979 to study "Inculturation" under Fr. Cyril Halley. Inculturation studies make it easier to cross cultural barriers: to be able to move in and out of other cultures without suffering cultural shock. I loved the course and found the experience of living with the famous Columban Fathers a real treat. Ours was a mixed community of priests, brothers and nuns. All planned to be educators and/or missionaries in the Third World. I had never lived with so many men and women of kindred spirit in all my life. Over most of that diverse community there reigned humility and peace. From my observations, Paul found the experience very challenging and was inclined to consider "running a school" in any land as a culturally neutral profession. His world was the school. Community had no importance in his scheme of values. He was a past "successful" headmaster of the great St. Patrick’s College, Ballarat. I quickly concluded that for Paul there was nothing he felt needed learning. His attitudes and contributions continually embarrassed me, raising doubts in my mind as to how the hell we were to work together? Paul and life sharing experiences were incompatible. This headmaster stood alone. Oh dear and how sad! I was nothing to Paul, one of those lesser beings called, "a junior member of my staff." My personal worth was still recovering from the nature of my childhood. I was hurt all the time by his coldness. At the time, I did not have the clarity of vision to openly hold him accountable for his discrimination. His, I concluded, was an arrogant approach to new cultures, experienced missionaries and our future mission born out of his "successes" in the developed world.
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