Schönstatt - Begegnungen

Mary's Mission in Arizona

Dedication of Home Shrines and Covenant Retreat Weekend in Yarnell, St. Joseph's Shrine

Schoenstatt Weekend in Yarnell, Arizona: Mary's Mission for Today's World
Schönstatt-Wochenende in Yarnell, Airzona: Marias Sendung für die heutige Welt
The "Mothers of the Desert" worked on Schoenstatt's Marian Covenant Spirituality
Die "Mütter der Wüste" beschäftigten sich intensiv mit Schönstatts Bündnisspiritualität
Sally and Mary with the banner of the Schoenstatt Rosary Campaign in Airzona
Sally und Marie mit der Fahne der Schönstatt-Rosenkranzkampagne der Pilgernden Gottesmutter in Arizona
Candle Light Procession to St. Joseph's Shrine
Lichterprozession zur Josefs-Kapelle
Am Schluss der Messe segnete Pater Langsch viele Bilder der Gottesmutter von Schönstatt für Arizona
At the end of the Mass, Father Langsch blessed many Pilgrim MTA pictures for Arizona
Blessing of a Home Shrine
Segnung eines Hausheiligtums
Fotos: LeRoy © 2001

(Sally LeRoy) "Mary's mission in Today's World" was the subject of the Schoenstatt Retreat Weekend for the Arizona Schoenstatt family, on October 19 21, 2001, in Yarnell, St. Joseph's Shrine. Father Dieter Langsch came for the dedication of several home shrines and to give the talks on the role of Mary in Schoenstatt, in each person's life, and her mission for the world.

Schoenstatt in Arizona this is a small group with the ideal "Mothers of the Desert" that includes two Mary Lou's, two Jean's and one Sally and one Rose, and Rose's husband. He is a deacon, and "also belongs! Even though he's Dad and not a Mother we include him in our group as at present there is no couples group." This Schoenstatt group has been in existence since Sally LeRoy came here in 1989 when Bernadette Lastinger (who presently moved away to Ireland) and Sally would get together monthly around the 18th, go to Mass and then get together for a Schoenstatt meeting.

The Home Shrine, a Place of Grace

Jean Swetel lives in Gilbert, AZ and is a Schoenstatt mother. Father Langsch blessed and
dedicated her home shrine October 19, 2001, soon after having been picked up by the airport. Each minutes counts when a Schoenstatt Father comes for a one-time visit. The title of this first home shrine blessed on this weekend is: "Our Lady of the Trinity". A home shrine blessing also closed the weekend; "Queen if All Hearts" is the name and mission of Mary in another Arizona home. In a state like Arizona with hundreds of miles distance to the nearest Shrine, the home shrine is important for the Schoenstatt mothers, a real place of grace linking them to the stream of life and grace from the Original Shrine and giving them the opportunity to contribute from Arizona.

Mary's Mission in Today's World

The retreat took place in Yarnell, Arizona, St. Joseph's Shrine. Father Langsch talked about the history of the Schoenstatt Covenant of Love and the covenant spirituality. "If you do everything with the Blessed Mother, then you will be like her. All this leads us to a life of living like Mary". Father Kentenich builds on the whole concept of dedication. A dedication
is a mutual giving of self, a perfect and affectionate exchange. The covenant is "I want to do for you and you want to do for me" Father Kentenich started the covenant with the sodalists in a little chapel during WWI, started entrusting them to the Blessed Mother. Her mission in today's world, Father Langsch said, healing of the broken hearts, transformation, working miracles of grace. 


Candle Light Procession through the Wooded Area with the Schoenstatt Rosary Campaign Banner
One of the highlights of the retreat was a procession on Saturday night. Led by the Mother Thrice Admirable banner the banner of the Schoenstatt Rosary Campaign that the mothers made years ago - and Fr. Langsch carrying the monstrance all processed, praying the rosary throughout the wooded area and to the shrine of St. Joseph, where Fr. Langsch and Schoenstatt Deacon Bob Myers celebrated Benediction. The exposition of the Blessed Sacrament and the prayers in the shrine made this a very special moment for all.

My own Mission in Life - Personality Radiates

What's our expectation of this retreat weekend, the "Mothers of the Desert" asked themselves. The focus of their reflection: "Who is the Blessed Mother to us?" Marian devotion, Father Langsch explained, is not just about admiring Mary's beautiful personality and mission. The Arizona Schoenstatt members realized: The Blessed Mother is one of us, one like us, helps us fulfill our task. In my life, who am I and what am I doing? It's easy to say, she has a beautiful personality and task, but we do too. Focus on myself, who am I? What is my identity? My mission in life is whom I radiate. Personality radiates.
We always should look up to her and say "I want to be like you; you are so beautiful! Make me like you! Like her child, we should sit at the feet of the Blessed Mother and be full of admiration. Schoenstatt is living like the Blessed Mother in my daily life, be an imitation of Mary." It is a shift emphasize. Instead of turning to the Blessed Mother and ask: "Who are you", it is about turning to her and ask: "Who am I?" and "Which is my identity, and which is my task. Mary's Mission for Today's world, then, and Mary's mission for Arizona, then is, as one of the mothers expressed: "Form us into beautiful personalities so we can do a great job".

Praying the Rosary with a Special Untention
Fr. Langsch also gave a talk on Mary and the Rosary that was very inspiring for the participants. A devotion to the Blessed Mother, he said, is as old as the church history. The main aspect of the devotion to the Blessed Mother in the Catholic Church has always been what is God's plan and God's will. The first aspect of the rosary is we turn to the Blessed Mother and we love her, we have a devotion to her, we want to become like her and be like her because that is according to the Father's will. 

In the rosary we are aware of the fact, when we pray we lead ourselves into that aspect of
calling upon the Blessed Mother for her help, intercession and presence. The more we pray the rosary the more we are lead to the imitation of her virtues that we follow her example. Many people like the scene of the Annunciation so much they make that their Personal Ideal. We need to be aware that as we pray, it reflects into our daily lives and what we are praying is forming an attitude in our daily lives. Otherwise prayer is fruitless. 

The practical application: Say the rosary with a particular intention in mind. We can say "this decade I offer up specifically to you Blessed Mother, that you draw our children to the faith. Say the rosary with a particular intention in mind; connect that particular prayer with our daily life.

Love Prayer Living in the Presence of God

Fr. Langsch's closing touch on the weekend was that we see the Blessed Mother very much alive and present, that she becomes an integrated part of our life. Another aspect is to talk about living in the presence of God; and living in the presence of the Blessed Mother or the Sacred Heart or the angels. All of these are secondary causes to help us to be united with the primary cause of God, living in the presence of God and that means I need to be inwardly so
drawn into it that it shows that my actions in my life shows the way of how we are. That is how we can end up with at least a definition of love prayer. Prayer is talking with God but ultimately communion and union. We need to inflame our hearts to be on fire with love for God, that is prayer. Loving God, serving God with all our hearts with all our minds, with all our fibers of our being. And that is the deepest form of prayer: Living in the presence of God. 

Father Langsch blessed many of the Arizona MTA pictures before Mass on October 21. The
"Mothers of the Desert" know: Mary has a mission in Arizona, and they have.



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