Wherever Maryknoll Priests and Brothers work, their lifestyle demands a commitment to growth in the Spirit. One cannot live overseas in harsh environments, in different cultural situations without a grounding in faith and purpose. For this reason Maryknoll priests and brothers cultivate an active prayer life. Where possible they commit themselves to form small communities of prayer where they celebrate together the Sacred Mysteries, discuss the Sacred Scriptures, and reflect on their missionary challenges in light of the gospel.
According to Bishop James Edward Walsh M.M., Maryknoll's second Superior General, the spiritual virtues predominant in a missioner are these:
Generosity that does not stop to count the cost in time or labor or personal comfort in his ministry; prudence or wisdom or maturity of judgement that governs his actions when he alone is the embodiment of Christian living in an area of unbelievers; and confidence in God's power, that will carry him through apparent failure. The missioner...requires every virtue in one form or another; but hope, which implies confidence in God, and a persevering willingness to spend and be spent as His messenger, must occupy a very prominent place in his spiritual armor. (Maryknoll Spiritual Directory, p.145)