One unique thing about studying in the Legion in Rome is that we have brothers from all over the world. In my little team has brothers form Brazil, Puerto Rico, Columbia, Mexico, the USA, Argentina, Hungary, Italy and me from Canada, and we are only 15.
When I meet a new brother, usually the first question out of each of our mouths after names is “Where are you from?” since Legionaries come from all over. Some brothers are generalists and say “Mexico,” while others say something like Irapuato, Guanajuato (that’s a city and state in Mexico).
Each nation has its particular characteristics: if you want something ordered ask a German, if you want good food ask either a Frenchman or an Italian, if you want peace ask most Canadians (except drunk Canuck fans); and if you want fun ask a Mexican. Having all the nations under one roof, we get to experience the good that each one has to offer.
For many, even for me at times, it is a wonder that we can all get along given such a diverse background. And the diversity isn’t just limited to nationality: some come from poor hard-working farm families, some from rich families, and many come from normal middle-class families; some entered when they were 12 others when they were 30; some are the first in their family to have a university degree, and I am at least the 5th generation in my family to have one.
Each nation has their flag – only one has had the creativity to put a leaf in the middle of it – that unites that nation but I think in the Legion we have an even stronger bond than that. We have the bond of charity, the bond of Christ.