In Covenant with God and People
Schoenstatt family of Passau meeting with their bishop
GERMANY, Brigitte Krompaß. Covenant day in June was for the Schoenstatt family in the diocese of Passau a special day, longed for and prepared well for long. Some 30 youths and 20 adults met with diocesan bishop Wilhelm Schraml. The Schoenstatt family in the diocese Passau, with the well known Marian place of pilgrimage, Altötting, is very small, has no own diocesan Schoenstatt Shrine – but much commitment!
At the beginning, the Schoenstatt group sang the song: "Gently and softly. The bishop was evidently happy about that and confirmed that the it is true what the song says – Mary leads to her Son, Jesus.
Representatives of the different Schoenstatt groups told the bishop which groups exist, and he wanted to know from which parishes all came. Then he listened very attentively to the short presentations about the life and apostolate of the different groups.
Sunflower and heart Shrine
The Girls' Youth formed the biggest group. They presented their banner with the symbol of the sunflower and the heart shrine, and their motto: in covenant with God and the persons – all out of love with joy. Then they reported of the camp weeks and of the three girls' groups. The contents of the group discussions are how to grow deeper in faith and how to apply faith to the everyday life, and the personal ideal. Each should and experience herself as precious and valuable.
The Boys' Youth reported of the meetings that they have each second month.
After a flute piece – our bishop is a music friend – the presentation went further:
Hermine Eichhorn reported of the group of the Women's League Burghausen that exists since 60 years – what a faithfulness! They also spoke about the retreats with Schoenstatt Priest Father Maurer in Altötting.
Thirty pictures of the Pilgrim Mother in the diocese
Brigitte Krompaß briefly introduced her community, the Women's Federation whose members dedicate themselves to universal apostolate. She personally sees her task in supporting the small Schoenstatt family of the diocese and to help establish Schoenstatt family groups in the parishes. Bishop Schraml asked her to keep him informed about the Schoenstatt life in the diocese.
Also the mothers group told about their group meetings and tradition. They brought a candle with the picture of the monstrance, the symbol of the mothers, a garden bouquet and a card with a spiritual bouquet in form of prayers and deeds.
Sr. Maria-Margarita shared about the Pilgrim Mother who visits the families, creating an atmosphere of community with God and with each other. Bishop Schraml compared this to the traditional "Frauentragen", when a statue of the Blessed Mother, especially in advent, is brought from house to house. The Pilgrim Mother, however, brings the graces from the Shrine and unites with the prayers and faith of millions of persons in over 80 countries who receive her. Approximately 30 pictures of the Pilgrim Mother ware visiting in different parishes of the diocese.
Bishop Schraml showed special interest in the young people who are ready to be group leaders. He said, these youths are the leaven for the youth. Their apostolate is very important, and they might commit errors but that would not be the end of the world. Better doing something, with errors and faults, than doing nothing!
The more work one has, the more one must pray
The youth brought along a little gift; they had written prayers and deeds on cards and matches, asking for this to be transformed in abundant blessing for the bishop.
The bishop named the prayer as a rich source of power and strength. The more work one has, the more one needs to pray. This also applies to a bishop, he added. He also asked to pray for priestly vocations.
An especially joyful surprise was for us when he then shared that he had already repeatedly been in Schoenstatt, when he was a the Pallottines' College with the Liturgical Commission. He said, if one is Schoenstatt, it is normal to also visits the shrine in the valley. He then exchanged some words with Father Georg Frank of the diocese of Regensburg whom he knows from the dedication of the Shrine in Nittenau. The meeting ended with the singing of the Magnificat and the Bishop's blessing.
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