Sister hears “the Gospel shouting”  

Ministry With the Poor funding helps families in Peru

Sisters supports a Peruvian child on his First Communion
Sister Noylí Margot Ríos Manzo, CSC, celebrates first Communion day with one of the students in the family catechetical program in Lima, Peru.

While her official job title is advisor to the family catechetical program in a parish in Lima, Peru, Holy Cross Sister Noylí Margot Ríos Manzo’s ministry taps deep into the needs of the entire community she serves. In her role, she helps 17 couples plan and carry out the program, which guides children and their families in their faith formation. But she also counsels families, helping them to reconcile and work through the reality of their daily lives in light of the teachings of the Church.

For some families, areas of conflict and confusion center around family violence, child suicide, and drugs and alcohol. Sister Noylí helps couples and their family members through classes and activities that teach nonviolence, and strengthen and promote right relationships. These families, she says, “have been for me the Gospel shouting. As the Gospel of Matthew says, ‘I tell you that as you did it to one of these my brothers (and sisters), even to the little ones, you did it to me.’”

As a Sister of the Holy Cross and a psychologist, Sister Noylí navigates these rough familial waters on a daily basis, drawing on her compassion and her own religious formation. She uses Ministry With the Poor funding for the catechism program that benefits the impoverished families of the parish in many ways. For example, in 2015 Sister Noylí spent time interviewing 105 children, many of whom live in violent, chaotic environments. Then, through the catechism program, she helped shepherd those children and their families through the preparation to receive the sacraments of baptism and first Communion. The Gospel is shouting indeed!

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