A personal account by sophomore Molly Seaman:
Over the recent Spring break, several Cabrini College faculty, students and alumnae had the opportunity to travel to Guatemala in order to participate in a one-week mission trip in San Lucas.
Our time in Guatemala would not have been complete without visiting the kind Missionary Sisters at Dispensario Madre Cabrini in Barcenas.
Over the course of my life I have had the great pleasure and honor of knowing and loving many Missionary Sisters. I have very fond memories of the Sisters and all the good they have done and continue to do for many – including for my family and me. For this reason, I hold the Missionary Sisters very close to my heart.
As soon as I stepped out of the van in Barcenas and saw the words “Madre Cabrini” painted on the building, I knew that I would be among friends.
Our group had the great pleasure of spending the day with Sr. Maria Elena Plata, MSC, a new amiga of the Cabrini College Cavaliers.
Sr. Maria Elena was kind enough to show us the different departments in the Dispensary; introduce us to many of the employees; lead us to a breathtaking view of Barcenas on the roof, as well as, provide a very tasty and satisfying lunch.
I was truly in awe of the incredible work that the sisters do with the people of Barcenas. The Dispensario contains a hospital, psychological services, a children’s program, a pharmacy, as well as other resources for the people of Guatemala.
The Dispensario embodies the spirit of Mother Cabrini and welcomes all to its services. Our group had the great opportunity of witnessing the sisters in action as they greeted all of the patients and employees by name, offering kind words and a hug to everyone they passed.
The cross that the Missionary Sisters wear around their neck is an immediate sign of peace and safety for me. Although Guatemala is thousands of miles away from the United States, Barcenas and the Dispensario instantly became our home away from home.
Gracias to the Missionary Sisters of the Sacred Heart for showing us so much love during our journey and for carrying out the work and mission of Mother Cabrini every single day.
A Visit to Guatemala – An Alumna’s Perspective – Jean Findlay ’85
Last week I had the privilege of joining Cabrini College professors Dr. Jerry Zurek and Dr. Raquel Green and their class on their spring break trip to San Lucas, Guatemala. This is part of a semester-long course they teach called ECG 200 (Engagements with the Common Good). There were 10 students and 4 Cabrini College alumnae on this immersion trip to the San Lucas Mission. This was a powerful week in so many ways as we interacted with volunteers at the Mission and met the people of San Lucas Toliman through our work. Each day seemed to reveal a new level of purpose about why this group of 16 was meant to be on this journey together.
In the middle of the week we were able to visit the Missionary Sisters in Bárcenas who graciously welcomed us and gave us a full tour of the Madre Cabrini Dispensario. As Sr. Maria Elena Plata, MSC led us through the clinic and explained the services offered, I had the overwhelming feeling that I had been there before. This was my first trip to Guatemala so this familiar feeling was something else. Over the years I have been fortuntate to visit other MSC communities in the United States and one thing is always true when we are in the presence of Cabrini Sisters in a Cabrinian institituion. You are always made to feel welcomed and hospitality flows from everyone you meet. It’s as though you are meeting up with friends you have not seen in some time.
A special thank you to Sr. Maria Elena Plata, Sr. Laudir Crocolli, and Sr. Xochilt Calero for extending such a warm welcome to all of us. I was so pleased that these students and recent graduates of Cabrini College were able to meet the sisters and hear about their work in the first person and better understand that Cabrini is not just a school in the Philadelphia suburbs – but it is indeed part of a global organization.