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From the Shrine - an Apostolic Movement

National Leaders' Conference of Spain in Madrid, November 9 10, 2002

Escena de Pentecostés de la puerta del Santuario - un programa
Pentecost scene of the door of the Shrine - a programmatic picture
Pfingstszene über der Heiligtumstür - ein Programm
Bendición final en el Santuario, envío
Final blessing at the Shrine, sending
Schluss-Segen und Aussendung am Heiligtum
Cada Schoenstattiano quemó una maderita en el recipiente del Capital de Gracia
Each participant burnt a piece of wood in the bowl of the Capital of Gracer
Jeder steckte im Feuerbecken des Gnadenkapitals ein Holzscheit in Brand
Lema: Desde el Santuario un Movimiento Apostólico...un movimiento apostólico
Motto: From the Shrine an apostolic movement... an Apostolic Movement
Motto:Vom Heiligtum aus eine apostolische Bewegung... ein Apostolische Bewegung
Fotos: Diez Leon © 2002

SPAIN, Mar Diez León. With 140 persons assisting, on a beautiful fall weekend, the National Leaders' Conference of the Schoenstatt Movement in Spain took place on November 9 and 10 by the Shrine in Pozuelo, Madrid, with representatives from the regions of Madrid, Barcelona, and Bembibre participating. Guided by the motto: From the Shrine, an apostolic movement take it capitalized and not capitalized! the branches, federations and institutes analyzed the general situation of Schoenstatt in Spain, and especially the apostolic goal and reality.

After the Holy Mass, the Professional Women's League presented the parallel between the Pentecost scene as pictured above the door of the Shrine and the apostolic mission of each Schoenstatt member, illustrating this with texts from various Schoenstatt members in process of canonization.

Characteristics of a 21st century apostle

In his talk, Father Patricio Moore spoke about the characteristics of a 21st century apostle: the apostle has community spirit, is joyful, and consistent. Faith for a Schoenstatt member is like a tree, with the Blessed Mother the roots, self-education the trunk, and apostolate the fruit. In branch-crossing discussion groups, the participants then spoke about items like: Why does Schoenstatt not grow in Spain? What is the apostolate of the branches? How is our acceptance? Do we personally work according to the tree aspects of the "tree"?

Testimonies from apostolic projects

After lunch and a time of adoration in the Shrine, testimonies from various apostolic projects were shared. The Schoenstatt Boys' and Girls' Youth shared about their missions during summer vacation, taking place in El Bierzo, and about little miracles of transformation experienced with the people. The Schoenstatt Movement of Barcelona is working with May missions and tries to support parish life in a time of crisis. The Family Movement shared their educational projects that they try to implement in schools, and associations of students' parents.

"Let us glow like brands of fire"

The Schoenstatt Sisters afterwards presented an audiovisual with the theme: "How Father Kentenich was an apostle", followed by a pilgrimage to the Shrine. Each participant then placed a piece of wood into the capital of grace bowl, to be lit and burn, accompanied by the family hymns, and the prayer from Heavenwards.

"Let us glow like brands of fire,
In addition, joyfully go forth to the nations,
Giving witness of redemption
And jubilantly leading all people to the Triune God."

The youngest ones, the Marian Apostles, then took their turn providing a joyful closing of the day with their performance of the Life of Peter and Paul.

Living and sharing one's faith in each sphere of life

Sunday dawned with Morning Prayer and testimonies of families from El Bierzo; they shared that three members had offered their life for the spread of Schoenstatt there, and that since they witnessed that the Blessed Mother had glorified herself.

Afterwards, the delegates met with their own branches to discuss the inputs and share about the apostolic involvement of the groups and individuals. The Professional Women's League of Madrid, for instance, will provide a "Day for Women" on March 8, while the members of the Barcelona branch are involved in the May missions, and parish work with children, and adults, apostolate within their own groups, or the pastoral of the Shrine.

At the end, Holy Mass was celebrated as an act of mission, with the final blessing by the Shrine. Then all bid farewell after an enriching weekend, that left all with renewed strength and motivation to live one's own faith without hiding it, showing it openly and sharing it, knowing that thus others may get to know Christ at the very places where God each one destined to be: in the families, on the work place, and in any sphere of life.



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