Written By Miss Tara Molina
Within one minute of Olivia slicing her outer wrist open in a freak accident while putting groceries away, every person in the room was moving to help in some way. Finally, my first-aid skills were put to the test! Before we came to the consensus that this wound required stitches, Teresa and Julia had already left to purchase the necessary wound-cleaning supplies. Kate got to play doctor and sterilize the cut, as I texted my personal nurse (aka mom) asking for professional advice. Teresa, our newest Fellow, got a tour of the Willis apartment’s kitchen as she swept the broken glass off the floor (thank you and welcome, Teresa). After hastily Google searching, Julia broke the news that all of the urgent care facilities were closed and Lincoln Hospital at 149th and 3rd would be our closest option.
Gratitude, gift giving, and receiving seemed to be a theme this week. After teaching my disciples (students) in El Camino about the Epiphany and the gifts the Magi brought to Jesus, I found myself reflecting on the gifts or blessings that I gave and received throughout the week. One of my New Year’s goals is to keep a gratitude journal, so that I am more aware of the blessings in my life and the ways in which I can continue to serve the people God has placed in my life to love.
Bundling up to bear a frigid trek to the hospital at 10:30 pm was not ideal, especially on a school night, but living in community is all about sacrifices. Even our boss left his home in the North Bronx to meet us at Lincoln and then escort Olivia to another hospital in NYC that didn’t have an 11-hour ER wait (which, if you know any doctors, please recommend working in the Bronx, as this community needs and deserves them). From our outrageously comical plots to make Olivia’s injury seem like a priority, to the most heartwarming moment seeing Paul walk into the waiting room, I realized that being in community is one of the most beautiful gifts I have ever received. Being in community as a Fellow goes beyond the people you live, pray, and serve with; our community includes every person driven to our mission. For that, I am extremely grateful and definitely took note of in my 2017 gratitude journal.
Needless to say, the first week being back in the Bronx and in community was exciting! Indeed, there is never a dull moment as a Seton Teaching Fellow. Being reunited with my community members after not seeing them for two weeks—the longest amount of time we have been separated in six months—helped me recognize community as a gift. Between the unconditional laughter during community dinners and social gatherings with other missionaries in the Bronx, the dually hilarious and traumatizing events of the first week being back has given me a lot to be thankful for.
Even though the holiday season has fizzled away and a new year has begun, I challenge you to always reflect and give thanks for the blessings God graces us with every day.t the year!