Brief News From Schoenstatt
Schoenstatt Girls' Youth Training Week: 28 girls and young women from several German dioceses met after Easter for a training week in Schoenstatt. They wanted to improve their skills for sharing Schoenstatt with other girls. A tour of the Father Kentenich House was part of their program.
Schoenstatt Men's Annual Leaders' Convention: 24 men met in House Marienau for sharing and learning. The workshops and talks centered on the Triune God as a model for human community. Their motto for the following year: In the Covenant with the Triune God -Living New Community. They also made plans for the annual men's pilgrimage to Schoenstatt that will take place June 17/18, 2000.
Easter vacation - Retreat time in Schoenstatt: Schoenstatt Mothers from Karlsruhe and Bruchsal - Freiburg diocese -, teachers from all over Germany, and retired women from the Speyer diocese met in House Marienland for retreats and workshops.
Exhibition in the Mission House reopened: On May 7, 2000, the exhibition in the Mission House, Mount Schoenstatt, was reopened after being remodeled. The exhibition is open Tuesday - Sunday, 9:30am - 11.30am and 1:00pm - 6:00pm. Each Sunday at 3:00pm a program is offered on various aspects of "Inspiration from the ONE world" - Schoenstatt Apostolate world-wide.
May 27, 2000 - Pilgrim Shrine Festival in Schoenstatt: Representatives from all Pilgrim shrine groups in Germany are invited to celebrate the Holy Year 2000 in Schoenstatt. More than 1,000 participants are expected to come; similar festivals will take place at the local Schoenstatt Centers throughout this year.
On April 8, 2000, 50 pilgrims from Bavaria came to Schoenstatt. Most of them belong to the Schoenstatt Pilgrim Shrine Movement, and now wanted to once see the place where it all began. Groups of pilgrims came also from Borken, Taunusstein, Oberkirch, Hochrhein, Rebecq/Belgium, Bad Mergentheim, and Kaltenherberg. Grandparents of students from the Schoenstatt St. Mary's School in Vallendar spent an afternoon in Schoenstatt.
Families from Poland who live in Germany were invited to Schoenstatt on April 15, 2000. About 40 persons from various places spent some hours by the Original Shrine. Many Polish families in Germany receive a Pilgrim Shrine, appreciating this true Marian devotion they often missed in Germany.
Mothers and children from the Osnabrück diocese spent a joyful weekend (April 14-16) in Schoenstatt, Marienland. The 25 young mothers were specially excited with a talk on Schoenstatt pedagogy given in the Father Kentenich House by Schoenstatt Sister M. Doria Schlickmann. The 37 kids age 2-14 enjoyed a rally of Mount Schoenstatt. Families from Paderborn came for a workshop in the House of the Families on the same weekend.
A workshop for nurses was held in House Marienland (April 8-10). The subject was – spirituality and nursing, with special emphasis on the challenges of encouraging listening and talking.
The crosses on the tombs of hero sodalists Max Brunner and Hans Wormer, and of Fr. Reinisch and Fr. Eise, by the Original Shrine, were restored and brought back to their places after several weeks.
Musical weekend in the Youth Center, Marienberg (April 14-16): 32 members of the Oberwesel (Rhine) Kolping Movement's brassband came to practice for an upcoming performance.
A new biography on Father Kentenich, written by Swiss author Berta Waibel, was published in March (available in German only). The author, who published a number of biographies, got to know Schoenstatt in 1993.
Father Franz Reinisch Bridge: Unanimously, the Vallendar Municipal Council voted to name the bridge over the Hillscheid Creek, connecting the road to Hillscheid and the area around the Original shrine, "Father Franz Reinisch Bridge". They followed an application made by the CDU fraction, in February 2000. The applicants mentioned that Fr. Reinisch was the only German priest who refused the loyalty oath to Hitler. "He was faithful to his convictions, that it is worth while to give one's life for certain values." He made this decision in Schoenstatt – a decision that lead to his execution on August 21. 1942. "As a Pallottine priest, he worked for the Schoenstatt movement," the application reads. "With this, he is like a bridge – a bridge both to Schoenstatt, and to the Pallottines."
Retreat for Mothers and Children: Mothers and children from the Paderborn and Cologne dioceses enjoyed a weekend retreat in House Marienland. The Mothers' League's Year's motto set the tone: "Thank you that you are here!" The weekend was marked by many common activities of mothers and children, who specially enjoyed a meditative dance with lights by the shrine.
Holy Mass again in the Pilgrims' Church: Since April 4, 2000, the holy Masses for Schoenstatt pilgrims again take place in the Pilgrims' church. With the beginning of spring, pilgrims are coming in bigger groups again. Holy Mass each day (except Monday), at 10:30 AM.
Retreats, workshops, seminars: Senior women and men from the Offenburg area spent some days of reflection and sharing in Schoenstatt, April 2-4, 2000. 30 participants of a workshop held in the Würzburg Schoenstatt Center took a 3 ½ hours by bus to spend some time in Schoenstatt and visit the Father Kentenich House. Retired women from the Speyer diocese had silent retreat, March 26 – 31, in House Marienland.
Pilgrims' Place by the Original Shrine in Process of Remodeling: Already in January, a number of decayed trees around the Original Shrine had been cut down. The place is to be drained, and the area around the old stone altar will be remodeled. The ramshackle altar was torn down. Fr. Rummel SAC, director of the Original Shrine, shared, that the big cross will remain there, and a new altar area is to be built to make celebrations of the Eucharist, prayer services, as well as choir performances possible.
Report on Sr. Emilie Engel in the Trier diocesan paper: In the April 9, 2000 issue of the Trier diocesan newspaper "Paulinus", a portrait of Emilie Engel (1893-1955) is published, in a series titling: "Saints of Nowadays". In the 12th part of this series, which is written by Hubert Mockenhaupt, a former professor, Emilie Engel is pictured as a person who lived out of a deep faith in Divine Providence, and left lasting memories in the minds of those who met her. The process of beatification for Emilie Engel was opened on October 12, 1999.