Deacon Bill Hynes has a passion for mission work. This summer, it took him to Sri Lanka, where he stayed with the Brothers of the Christian Schools in Colombo and taught five of their Novices and several women studying to become Good Shepherd Sisters.
Getting to know the Brothers in other countries has helped Bill realize the universal quality of Lasallian education. “It’s amazing how much we have in common as Lasallian educators, as Catholics,” he said. “You kind of know your philosophy going in and you’re friends right from the beginning.”
Bill teaches religion at St. Joseph’s Collegiate Institute in Buffalo, NY and is assigned to St. Benedict’s Parish in Amherst. He said the trips make him a better teacher, impact his preaching, and broaden his views. As he toured the northern area near Mannar, he witnessed the effects of the recent conflict in the country, particularly many damaged buildings, including a Brothers’ school (pictured below).
The Brothers moved from that area and established a new location.
Click for more pictures.
Sights like the damaged school will leave a lasting impact on Bill, but many fond memories will remain with him as well-the “wonderful, open” people and the generosity in rebuilding. “It’s one thing to talk about giving money to the missions and then it’s another to actually see the people that benefit from a well or a building that gets put up for orphans or de-mining operations,” he said.
Bills attraction to mission work stems from his interest in the universal church and the worldwide Lasallian community. He continues to be in contact with the Brothers whom he met on previous trips to Kenya and Thailand. He hopes to visit St. Joe’s twin school in Nigeria next summer. Read more about Bill’s experience on his blog.