Mother, You are coming to Belmonte!
"The internationality and the sense of family which this Shrine awakens is already felt before its blessing" - The whole family united in hope for the blessing of the Shrine in Belmonte
ROMA, mfk. "Dear Mother, You are coming to Belmonte! We accompany You with all our love in your coming to Belmonte and knowing that you will soon take possession as Mother, Queen and Educatrix of the beautiful place on which our dear Father cast his sight, we ask that you see us as the Campaign of the Holy Rosary from Goya so that all that we do be pleasing to your Dear Son. Accompany the footsteps of your missionaries, draw them to Yourself! Speak to your Heavenly Father so that soon Father Joseph Kentenich, your eternal covenant partner, may rejoice in the honors of the altar. We love You! The Campaign of the Holy Rosary from Goya". In this simple way, the missionaries from Goya in the state of Corrientes, Argentina express their unity with the blessing of the Shrine in Belmonte, Rome This was similarly expressed by all who were in Belmonte today, the 6th of September, only two days before the blessing of the Shrine: the Blessed Mother and Her Schoenstatt Family have arrived in Belmonte and from the Shrine "really, the most beautiful one in the world!", as was expressed by a member of the Italian family in Rome, look at this family which comes together to share these three days of celebration in Rome.
"Father Hugo Alvarez from San Isidro" – recently elected member of the General Council of the Institute of the Schoenstatt Diocesan Priests – "took to Rome a Rosary which we have made of the nuggets from the Oak tree which shades the Wayshide Shrine which Don Jaoa Pozzobon was familiar with!!!!!!!! That is the contribution to the Treasury of Grace from all of the coordinators and missionaries who united themselves with us, the Mothers, contributions which we started gathering since February so that God willing, we can place in our meeting room on the 8th of December, the Father Eye Symbol. This will be in response to the year of graces which our Father has given us!", writes Rita Bueno from San Isidro, Argentina.
"We want to offer to all pilgrims from all parts of the world our prayers joyfully uniting ourselves with them on the occasion of this most special event. Our hearts are with you and we hope that you "deposit" our prayers and intentions in the Shrine which belongs to all of us. May God bless you and many greetings to our dear friends from Monterrey, México on their trip to Belmonte", writes a group of young mothers from Monterrey to the pilgrims in Rome.
"Schoenstatt atmosphere" in hotels and airports
One has the impression that this Shrine is changing Rome. "I never traveled with so many Schoenstatters in one airplane", commented a member from the news team of the Press Office upon deboarding the plane at the Fiumicino Airport in Rome, along with 29 other Schoenstatters and among them Fr. Heinrich Walter, President of the International Council of the Schoenstatt Work. These began their journey in Cologne, Germany…On that same day pilgrims from South Africa, Argentina, Chile, and Germany arrived in Rome.
An explosion of joy burst in the hotel as Schoenstatters from Argentina and South Africa were reunited. For a long time now, these have been united in their love for the Campaign. At the same time, Sheila Mullany From Cape Town arrived. She is a member of the founding generation of girls’ youth in South Africa. Next year she will have belonged to Schoenstatt for 60 years! " This hotel seems like a Movement House", someone commented upon greeting other Schoenstatters who had recently arrived and already quite late. The pilgrims bring jars of all shapes and forms, flags, pilgrim MTAs, The Third International Auxiliary Shrine from the Rosary Campaign and innumerable symbols and gifts for the Shrine in Rome, all expressing their dedication, confidence, love…
An experience of the international family in Belmonte
"The internationality and the sense of family which this Shrine awakens is already felt before the blessing", this was the experience shared by the priests of the Institute of the Schoenstatt Diocesan priests upon celebrating the 6th of September – in the shadow of the Shrine to be blessed – the commitment to renewing the commitment with the community on behalf of a few young priests.
During this celebration some young men from the Boys Youth were invited to seal their Covenant of Love. Afterward – in a family atmosphere of joy and hope – they all came together to share some refreshments, experiences and enthusiasm. Really it is "the Shrine of all of us", on that beautiful land on which our Mother will soon descend to dispense Her graces.
She will beat the drum so that the Holy Father and the Church become aware of the presence of Mary and of the importance of her mission and the Marian mission of Schoenstatt for the Church and World.
We want to give something for the Shrine…We want to give something to our Mother in her new Shrine…News came from all parts of the World that along with the delegations whether they were numerous or small, many gifts for the new Shrine would arrive, for example, an altar cloth, flowers…From the heart of Africa, Burundi, came a small delegation – headed by Fr. Adelin Gacukuzi, Fr. Jean Marie Harushimana (from the Institute of the Schoenstatt Diocesan Priests) and Fr. Deo Maruhukiro (of the Schoenstatt Fathers) and other Schoenstatters from Burundi – they will bring a gift from the local family: a drum (a symbol of royalty) and a basket with contributions to the Treasury of Grace.
In this year in which we commemorate our two Shrines from Burundi (Mutumba, blessed 40 years ago and Mount Sion Gikungu ten years ago)", they express, "with much joy we unite ourselves with all of the pilgrims of the International Family of Schoenstatt on the occasion of the blessing of the Shrine <<Matri Ecclesiae>> and the International Center in Rome. We are proud to be able to be present for this event, represented by a small group from the "Heart of Africa", and thus live together with the great Family in the rhythm of this great festivity.
We have taken the time to meditate carefully on the meaning of this Shrine for the Church and we hope that in the same way our voices also resound in the future in these areas. In our African culture the drum is the symbol of the king. We recall the crowning of Our Mother Thrice Admirable in Isingiro (Tanzania). On this occasion Our Mother received a drum as a sign of her power as Queen. On February 2, 1966, our Father and Founder listened to the narration of this act and received likewise the gift of a small drum as a remembrance. Our Father was very happy with this event and he added a phrase that we could summarize in this way: May this drum also be a symbol of the presence of Our Queen in Rome. She will beat the drum so that the Holy Father and the Church may become aware of the presence of Mary and of the importance of her mission and of the Marian mission of Schoenstatt for the Church and World. The basket which is very typical of our African countryside is a symbol of our contributions to the Treasury of Grace from our Shrines. This symbol is also for us an invitation for us to feel co-responsible for the Shrine <<Marti Ecclesiae>> in the future. Through this we wish that the blessing which comes from this Shrine of Rome may reach our countries of Africa. May She strengthen us in the difficult situations in which we live. May She strengthen us in the Covenant of Love with the "Church, our Mother" and with all Schoenstatters throughout the whole world. In this confidence, we greet you cordially and we wish you many graces on this festive day".
"…from there may the bells ring taking the message of Schoenstatt to the whole World"
According to the words of Father Kentenich, Schoenstatt is something so profound that it will require theologians several generations to understand and analyze it and at the same time it is so simple that even a child is able to understand it, its message, its mission for the Church and World. Not only the recent symposium which took place in Buenos Aires on Father Kentenich’s concept of authority and which was attended by persons of a high intellectual level but the missionaries of the Rosary Campaign gathered around a Wayside Shrine some 100 kilometers from a Shrine reveal to us what Schoenstatt is, in its love for the Church, its high level of commitment to the mission of Schoenstatt for the Church and World which now come together in the Shrine at Belmonte. In the preparation for the blessing of this Shrine "Matri Ecclesiae", it became real in a popular way the "mission of Schoenstatt for the Church" through the motto and symbol of the jars: Fill the jars, like at the wedding at Cana, filled with love for the Church – which is love for Our Mother - , and take them to Rome.
In this spirit, the Schoenstatt Family gathers today with enthusiasm toward this new Shrine which belongs "to all of us". "The Schoenstatt Family of Coronel Dorrego sends to the community in Rome its message of greeting for the blessing of the Shrine…that the bells from there ring taking to the World the message of Schoenstatt and that the MOTHER THRICE ADMIRABLE dispenses Her graces to all its visitors", can be read from a message sent from Argentina; another message from María Inés Bedatou simply says: "From Bragado I unite myself to the whole Family in these days prior to the inauguration of the Shrine in Rome". "The Schoenstatt Family from La Plata offers hours of adoration during these days"; from San Isidro, Argentina they write: "The Mothers Branch will be present at the pilgrimage to Rome for the blessing of the Matri Ecclesiae Shrine and wants to take along the desire for a new world by many mothers, renwed in Christ and Mary while they pray that the graces which Our Mother dispenses in the Shrine – may these make us more faithful instruments for the Church and desiring the soon canonization of Father Kentenich so that his mission may be fully known by the Church".
Karina Ulalde from México summarizes her experience with this great event: "Truly one feels the presence of Our Mother and Father in our hearts, filling us with joy and enhancing the hope of love, in the unity of everyone’s hearts without caring about nationalities as all children of God".
Translation: Carlos Cantu, LaFeria, Texas, USA
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