The Holy See
back up

Missionary zeal 

"The duty of each Missionary is to be well informed of what the Church teaches through "Pontifical Documents". I want to make emphasis on the Apostolic Exhortation of His Holiness Pope Paul VI, "Evangelii Nuntiandi", on the evangelization of the modern world. 

I enjoin you the careful reading and meditation of "Evangelii Nuntiandi". This is a very important document for us missionaries. We must have its teachings in our mind all the time. I should be for us like and eagerness. a disquieting fire that tortures us at all times and will give us no rest until we could bring the light of Christ to all persons. Been missionaries is our precious right, our sweet obligation and our most sacred duty. It is a duty and right that we should not forget any minute of our lives. 

To be missionaries... How? As needed, even to die for it, if necessary. Where? anywhere. When? always. Measure? Our measure is obedience. We need to be obedient, like Jesus who "was obedient to death, death on a cross". "Here I am, I come to do your will". We need to be missionaries with Him, for Him, in HIm, in all its implication: in sacrifice, pain and suffering but also in joy. 

Joy in our daily Mass, our adoration and meditation, in our daily apostolate, in any type of work we do, in all actions of our daily lives: while we eat ad sleep, as well as when we rest. We need to be missionaries by every breath, by every palpitation of our hearts, minute by minute of our lives. Always, daughters, always. 

Our missionary spirit must be universal; it must extend and embrace all peoples, all races, all nations. It must embrace the whole world, without frontiers. 

Our testimony as missionaries is not all that is required, it is not enough. We must teach others about Christ. How will they know Him if no body teaches them? Faith comes as result of knowledge and knowledge is the result of listening, of listening the Word of God (cfr. Rom 10,14.17; EN 42). 

We missionaries should not therefore, let a day go by without our talking of Christ to others. To know that only a small number of people know the true God (the Love), should be a source of torment for us. It should urge us not to spare any suffering, any inconvenience. Is should spur us to do everything, anything to make God known and loved by all the inhabitants of the world. 

O leave you, daughters, to continue these reflections in the loving care of God our Father, and the inspiration of the Holy Spirit. Let them be the ones to inspire and show the best way to spread through out the world the Good news that Christ has brought for us". 

The Servant of God Maria Ines Teresa Arias. Taken from Circular No. 13, 1977. 



Grant us Lord to follow the example of your servant Maria Ines Teresa Arias. Help us to imitate her life of simplicity and the joy of contemplation and action, her love of Mary and the Church. Give us the same missionary spirit and the ardent desire to extend the reign of Christ to all peoples. Amen. 


The Servant of God, Maria Ines Teresa Arias, was born on Ixtlan del Rio (Mexico). She entered religious life in 1929 and lived for a while in California and then in Mexico. In the community she was appointed counseler, secretary and novice mistress. In 1945, the convent she founded in Cuernavaca, Mexico, was approved by the Holy See. The Congregation became missionary by the Pontifical Decree of 1951. Different foundations followed: Cuernavaca, Puebla, Chiapas, Guadalajara, Monterrey, Japan, United States (Texas, California), Costa Rica, Sierra Leone, Indonesia, Italy (Rome), Spain (Pamplona, Madrid), Ireland (Dublin), Nigeria. She died in Rome on July 22, 1981, leaving behind a missionary family of sisters, priests and lay persons, spread through the five continent. She left us a testimony of generous dedication and service to the Church. Her missionary travels took her to visit the convents she founded. She kept in touch with each one of them by correspondence. This correspondence has provided us with an abundant missionary legacy of great spiritual richness as are: letters, advices and reflections, studies and meditations, spiritual exercices. 

Prepared by Pontifical University Urbaniana,
with the collaboration of the Missionary Institutes