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John Schueller wrote:

Hi, guys —

I was planning on going on a mission trip to Mexico with a non-denominational group for 10 days although I would not be able to go to church during that time.

I will however be doing mission work and spreading the Word of God. I have felt the calling to become a missionary all of my life and really feel called to go. I brought this up with my mom and she was all for the trip but also told me that it wouldn't work out because I would be missing Mass.

I really don't know what to do and could really use some advice!


  { What should I do I feel called to do missionary work but would not be able to get to Mass? }

Bob replied:


Ask your parish priest about obtaining a dispensation and at the same time ask the trip organizer if there is any way they can find a Mass for you to go to — you would be surprised how accommodating most folks are.


Bob Kirby

Mike replied:

Hi John,

My take on this is a little different than Bob’s.

In your question, you did not make any distinction between being a missionary and being a Catholic missionary.

No Catholic missionary can take their vocation seriously if they don’t renew their Sunday Covenant by going to Mass.

At Mass (accompanied by regular Confession) we are strengthening and fortifying our souls with the sacramental graces we need to fulfill our vocation.

While being a non-denominational missionary is an admiral vocation, those in this endeavor are only spreading part of the Gospel and not he whole Gospel as Catholic missionaries do. They also lack the sacraments of the Church or at least most of them.

I would take Bob’s advice but if this turns into a long-term, serious vocation, you want to ensure that wherever you preach the Gospel, faithful Catholics and the sacraments of the Church accompany you. In this sense, your mom is right.

Just my two cents.


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