We’re different—in a good way: Profile of Father Roberto Mejia, O.Carm.
(Photo courtesy of the Order of Carmelites, Province of the Most Pure Heart of Mary)
What is your ministry?
I now work half-time at the parish St. Cyril of Alexandria in Tucson, Arizona. I also work as a chaplain at Salpointe Catholic High School in Tucson, and I serve on the vocation team for my province.
What first drew you to religious life?
Community life! I love having meals with my brothers, praying together, and working on common projects with different Carmelites. It doesn’t mean that I want to be with them all the time. I also need my personal time alone and with God. Religious life gives you a balance between community time and personal time.
I loved teaching Spanish at a Carmelite high school in Joliet, Illinois, because it made me realize that I like to be in a school working with young people. They are funny and recharge me with their energy, dreams, and hopes.
What form of prayer do you like best?
I have a strong love for long periods of silence where I can be myself with God. Also, I like lectio divina [praying with scripture].
What gives you hope about religious life?
Even now, religious life has something positive to say to the world. I always find people saying that religious are different, that we run parishes, schools, and social projects differently. It does not mean that we do different activities. It means that our spirit and the way we are makes the things we do feel different.
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