“Be afraid of one thing, the fear of not having tried.”
This is the message that Marilyn Bellett left young adults with following her sharing on Tuesday night’s The FaithFeed Livestream.
Forming part of the Diocese of Parramatta’s HOME Ground program that encourages people to remain positive and faith-filled in lockdown, The FaithFeed provided an opportunity for those in their mid-20s to 40s to express life and faith leadership through storytelling and action. The FaithFeed also invites adults of all ages to engage in this space as a way to increase mutual intergenerational growth in life and faith.
“As we start tonight, we do so present to each other online and present to the story we will be listening to tonight,” The FaithFeed co-host Kester Rozario explained.
“May our thinking tonight, on the way in which God is present and active in our lives, shift our unceasing thinking to unceasing awareness of the God who is here and now,” he said.
Marilyn, a member of the Young Christian Workers movement, spoke about her migrant background, her fear of change and her passion to make a difference in the world.
“There are two things I’ve always known about myself, the first being that I’ve always been afraid of change, and the second being that I’ve always been eager to take on responsibility,” Marilyn explained.
Using an example from when she was finishing primary school, Marilyn talked about how change causes her fear and worry, and how this has re-emerged during the pandemic.
“I am reminded of Jesus in the Garden of Gethsemane. He prays in the garden, hoping that God will find another way. ‘Let this cup pass from me,’ he exclaims, ‘but only if it is your will.’
“I imagine he was scared, anxious, hoping for change but prepared to accept what was to come.
“In moments of pain and fear, sometimes all you want is to be in the company of others who remind you that you aren’t so alone.
“It is important for us all to think about that. Who are the people that we crave when we go into these moments – the people who don’t just remind you that you’re not alone, the ones who sit with you in that place of discomfort and loneliness.”
Inspired by her parents, Marilyn said she is eager for things in society to change and how she sees that ‘vocational’ call as intrinsic to her life.
“[My parents] have lived very difficult lives…all they’ve ever wanted for me was to live a better life – to not get caught up in the messiness and pain associated with not conforming or succeeding in society.
“I truly believe that I do a disservice to my parents by choosing a comfortable and convenient life.
“I am eager for things to change. I need them too. I want to make a better world for my mum. I want to be part of the movement to restore the dignity of each and every human being, even if that means going up against some of the systems and people who have always benefited from her struggle.
“The job isn’t done until everyone can live a full and meaningful life.”
People tuning in to the livestream sent messages of thanks to Marilyn for her courage in sharing her story.
“Your story encourages us to recognise that each of us are called to move out of our comfort zone and to trust in God’s plan for us,” one viewer said.
“The loneliness you speak of when we aren’t living to our purpose is a loneliness of the self always. We will never truly know ourselves until we emerge from our comforts and be in mission with others,” another viewer said.
“Thank you FaithFeed for a great opportunity to listen to young people sharing their experiences,” another viewer said.
This evening, HOME Ground presents Worship Wednesday All Stars, led by PJ Almendras from the Diocese of Broken Bay. PJ Almendras has led worship on stages and altars nationally and internationally over the last ten years and will no doubt create for us a beautiful space of prayer and reflection.
Be inspired by Marilyn’s story by watching last night’s The FaithFeed Livestream here.