Holy Year 2000 – in Schoenstatt and in Rome
A Touch of Christmas in the October Week: A Place of Christ's rebirth
(mkf) Christmas or October, Prophet Song or "Silent Night," Rome or Schoenstatt, Bethlehem 2000 years ago or the Shrine in the year 2000, review or participation here and now? The presentation this afternoon of October Week created an extraordinary experience of the Holy Year. Images, sounds, words, and symbols, especially the light from Bethlehem, provided a sacred ("Holy Night") atmosphere. Schoenstatt and the Church, the Holy Land and the Shrine, the Holy Year in Schoenstatt and in Rome, became one on this afternoon.
Shortly after the program began, the light from Bethlehem, accompanied by Schoenstatt flags and a flag from Nazareth, were carried into the hall; and the musician intoned a well-known Christmas song that was sung by 1,000 representatives from Germany with joy and affection.
Your Shrine is our Nazareth ...
The Holy Father's Act of Penitence and his pilgrimage to the Holy Land was combined with the celebration of the 25th of March in Schoenstatt, the Eucharistic World Congress with the Corpus Christi Procession on Mount Schoenstatt. Gradual changes and soft blends in the video presentation underlined the message – the Holy Year in Rome and in Schoenstatt.
"It's organic," said one participant to his neighbor. "In the center of the church," he remarked, "Your Shrine is our Nazareth!"
The pictures from Rome and Schoenstatt and text from Father Kentenich about the adoration of the Blessed Sacrament prepared for a gradual change from review to participation and action. A special moment – Jesus, in the Blessed Sacrament, was carried into the hall. A time of adoration followed, with prayers from Father Kentenich. The prayer for peace in the land sanctified by Jesus' presence in his historical life was said with ardor – everybody was aware of the painstaking attempts to revive the peace process after weeks of bloodshed. The blessing with the monstrance was the climax of,a very intensive, prayerful time.
While all sang "O Triune God," Jesus in the Holy Sacrament was carried back to the tabernacle in the church. Sr. Annetraud, the moderator, announced a break – but it took some minutes until the participants resumed talking and went outside. "It was such an intense atmosphere," a Schoenstatt Sister said, "prayerful and joyful." A Schoenstatt priest said, "We don't have the time to watch all the reports about the Holy Year in Rome on TV. It was beautiful to have received this review now."
The church's pilgrimage through history is marked by those who walk the way in special love and faithfulness. The beatifications were mentioned and also the Schoenstatt members who led many to the Covenant of Love. Sr. M. Ilona and Monsignore Krimm were remembered in gratitude. The Holy Year is marked by pilgrimages to holy places. Schoenstatt's gifts to the church are holy places, the dedication of seven new Shrines in this year with over 64,000 participants and the five shrines that will be dedicated during the Holy Year in Bamberg/Germany, Irinjalakuda/India, Puerto Montt/Chile, Trujillo/Peru, and Madurai/India, an expansion of the beautiful place created in the Covenant of Love. Pilgrimages, feasts, and encounters deepen the awareness of the holy places. The Feasts of the Pilgrim Mother, diocesan pilgrimages, and the dedication of the Movement House in Heiligenstadt were shown as examples of many more. The Holy Father highlighted the meaning of the family. In Schoenstatt, the Families' Federation celebrated the 50th anniversary. A group of Schoenstatt families organized a trip to the Third World Meeting of the Families in Rome. One third of the German participants came through the initiative of these Families. There was spontaneous applause when the Martin family, the leader family of the German Families' Federation, was seen on a video clip giving the final statement after the Congress, "Children, the springtime of Church and Society".
A Year of the Younger Generation
World Youth Day in Rome – the biggest event of the Holy Year, the biggest number of participants ever seen at a Holy Mass in Europe – 2 million young people. A video and personal testimonies recalled the experience of the International Meeting of the Schoenstatt Girls' Youth that preceded the World Youth Day. "One sentence marked the meeting," a young woman shared. "Father Kentenich's call: You are my living crown. Do you want to know our motto for 2001? One sentence: You are my living crown!" The young people understand that they are the future of Schoenstatt. The future of Schoenstatt – a living crown!
Bastian Etzold, Daniel Wolf, and Johanna Riebesehl then shared their experiences from World Youth Day. Bastian's testimony moved the audience. He told about three personal graces in "his" Holy Year 2000, working on the "five pillars" of the Schoenstatt Boys' Youth at the beginning of the year, the diagnosis of colon cancer at the end of January, and the strong experience of being carried by his family, friends, and the Blessed Mother and being healed. A special privilege for him was the opportunity to represent (together with a girl from Spain) the Schoenstatt Youth on the international forum in Rome. Daniel shared the overwhelming experience that, just at the time when he and some others from Bastian's group made a private pilgrimage through Rome meditating on the "five pillars," Bastian called and told them that he had just managed to pass on the paper with the five pillars to the Holy Father. It's obvious that these young people have enjoyed a unique experience, which is summarized by Johanna, "The Holy Father waited for me! The church is young and beautiful, and the Schoenstatt Shrine was our home in Rome!"
Entrusting the Third Millennium to Mary
October 8, 2000: John Paul II dedicated the Third Millennium to Mary, entrusting the future of humankind to her. The dedication prayer wasprayed in Rome in Italian led by the Pope. And the particpants also heard it in German from a tape made on October 8 in the Original Shrine in
Schoenstatt. The presentation ended where it began, in the Founder Chapel, where the covenant with Father Kentenich was sealed on October 17, 1999, when the Father Eye Symbol was attached. The Shrine – Father Kentenich's mission, Schoenstatt's charisma.
English edition: Joan Biemert, New Franken, Wisconsin, USA
Letzte Aktualisierung: 24.10.2000 13:26 Mail: Redaktion / Webmaster
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