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Noé Servín (2): "I am willing to offer myself to this assurance with a certain amount of probable madness, or offer this madness with the assurance I find in God"

Noé Servín (2): "I am willing to offer myself to this assurance with a certain amount of probable madness, or offer this madness with the assurance I find in God"
30-01-2018 Otros Países
Noe will be one of the four first friars in this Augustinian Recollect community in Cuba who will start their mission in February. We spoke with him about this new international and interprovincial mission that was accepted by the Order.
What work have you done until now as an Augustinian Recollect friar?

The Boys Town in Costa Rica has been my first destination in Cartago (Costa Rica), this is where I´ve been serving God through the people God has blessed me with to share my life. I´ve been truly happy during these past five years of ministry here.

I´ve told the students here many times, sometimes in a joking way and other times in a serious way: “I´ve tried to combine gentleness with determination, even though at times I´ve lost the gentle part”. One thing is clear, during these past five years I´ve learned to profoundly love this institution and I´ve been totally committed to this noble cause because I believe in what its founder, Father Luis Madina, would say: “God wants with it”.

What took you to write the letter to volunteer in Cuba?

The reasons I have to commit myself to this mission are to cooperate in the evangelization done with the Cuban people who are probably very much affected by the circumstances they are living. Part of my vocation is to announce the Good News that God is with us always and has been throughout the history of humanity, no matter how tense historical moments can get.

The main reason why I´m going is my faithfulness to God´s calling, He´s expecting an answer. St. Paul tells us that God´s Word is not chained and we must not tie it down with the chains of passivity and resignation. Nor we can let fear paralyze us nor silence what we must proclaim to all the world.

Of your life and religious experiences, what are you taking with you to Cuba?

As I mentioned before, the Boys Town in Costa Rica has been the only place I´ve worked in since my ordination. I was in charge of the technical formation such as agricultural, farming and stockbreeding workshops. I haven´t had any direct experience in parish ministry, this is one of the things I pondered upon when deciding on whether or not to send my letter offering myself to go to this new mission in Cuba. But I don´t want to think that my whole religious life has been only these past five years, I believe it goes back to my years of studies and formation, and even my vocational itinerary.

If I´d had to highlight something positive about who I am and my life as a religious, it would have to be my perseverance, enthusiasm for the work entrusted to me and my love for the life in community. I have to also recognize which are my challenges in life which could be my strong character and my tendency to be at times intolerant. Sad to say, throughout these past years I´ve notice that my qualities do not erase my flaws, but everything that I am is in God´s hands.

My stay in Boys Town has also taught me new lessons: I´ve learned to find support in my religious brothers especially during tough times. I´ve learned to recognize my weakness and vulnerability, and even if it sounds contradictory, this has helped me to discover the support and protection on behalf of my religious community. I´m only thankful to God and my religious brothers that warmly welcomed me that first day in Cartago.

What have those close to you told you about your future mission in Cuba?

My family has taken it with serenity. Five years ago when I told them I would be going to Costa Rica, family and friends did question why I was not destined to work in a place closer to them. But God´s people are generous and they understand that God is good with all. They only asked me to never forget them, the same I asked on their behalf; always pray for me.

The words of my mother reflect how the news was taken: “May God be with you, my son; when you become a priest it´s like getting married, you just don´t depend on yourself. Be obedient and take care of yourself”.

My religious brothers have shared all types of opinions, some are happy with the new mission the Order has accepted, and those who see it as the craziest decisions the Order has made. Absurdity or feat, God only knows, all I know is that I am willing to offer myself to this assurance with a certain amount of madness, or offer this madness with the assurance I find in God.

The students in Boys Town ask me why I decided to leave, some even got to thinking I was not happy to be with them. I´ve had to explain clearly to them that I am not leaving to Cuba to make an escape from them; all the contrary, I love this institution and I´m very happy to be with them. But I guess it´s time to follow God´s calling which was demanding an answer on my behalf.

And what do you think about this?

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Augustinian Recollects. Province of St. Nicholas of Tolentine. Paseo de la Habana, 167, 28036, Madrid, Spain. Telephone: 913 453 460. CIF(fiscal registration number): R-2800087-E. Entered in the Register of Religious Organizations, of the Ministry of Justice, number 1398-a-SE/B. Privacy policy.