IVP - Strangely Dim - Pilgrimage of a Soul, Part One

June 3, 2010

Pilgrimage of a Soul, Part One

We asked Phileena Heuertz--codirector of the international advocacy mission Word Made Flesh and author of the newly released Likewise book Pilgrimage of a Soul--a series of questions about her experiences that led to writing her book, as well as the experience of writing itself. Here's the first question, along with her response. More to come.

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(SD) You've been doing advocacy work through Word Made Flesh for more than a decade. What drew you into that work in the first place?

 

(PH) In a few words, it was my love of God and compassion for the vulnerable that drew me in. After meeting some of the most courageous children, women and men living and dying in poverty, my life was changed. I could do nothing else but give myself for them. I had, in essence, discovered Jesus in the distressing disguise of the poor and I have never been the same since.

 

From a young age I've had a passion and desire to serve the most vulnerable. I've always been drawn with compassion to those in need. In 1995, at the age of twenty-two, I traveled to India, Nepal and Africa to serve for the summer with Word Made Flesh. It was my first experience outside the United States. I engaged abandoned babies living in over-crowded orphanages, children living on the streets, and men and women of all ages dying from malnutrition and preventable diseases.

 

I joined Word Made Flesh (WMF) in 1996 with the intention of serving in Chennai, India with the newly established WMF children's home for AIDS-affected children. However, through a series of events, my plans changed when the WMF-USA board asked my husband (Chris) and me to oversee the administrative offices in the States.

In addition to my husband, Mother Teresa and the Missionaries of Charity in India and Jackie Pullinger from Hong Kong were probably the most influential people in my life at that time who were bearing witness to hope among the poor. They set a high standard for service and advocacy, and I attempted to learn from their example.

Posted by Dave Zimmerman at June 3, 2010 12:31 PM Bookmark and Share

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Behind the Strangeness

Lisa Rieck is a reader and writer who likes to discuss good ideas over hot drinks and gets inspired by the sky. She takes in all kinds of good ideas as a proofreader for InterVarsity Press.

Rebecca Larson is a writer/designer/creative type who has infiltrated IVP's web department, where she writes and edits online content. She enjoys a good pun and loves the smell of freshly printed books.

David A. Zimmerman is an editor for Likewise Books and a columnist for Burnside Writers Collective. He's written three books, most recently The Parable of the Unexpected Guest. Follow him on Twitter at twitter.com/unexpguest. Find his personal blog at loud-time.com.

Suanne Camfield is a publicist for InterVarsity Press and a freelance writer. She floats ungracefully between work, parenting and writing, and (much to her dismay) finds it impossible to read on a treadmill. She is a member of the Redbud Writers Guild and blogs at The Rough Cut.

Likewise Books from InterVarsity Press explore a thoughtful, active faith lived out in real time in the midst of an emerging culture.

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