Dokumentation - Documentation - Documentación
 published: 2006-01-24

Fourty years ago...

Father Gunther Boll’s allocution in the Original Shrine at the celebration for the Fortieth anniversary of the Miracle of the Holy Night. December 24, 2005


Predigt: Pater Günther Boll am Urheiligtum

Foto: POS Fischer © 2006


Dear Schoenstatt Family:

We are gathered here today, at this moment, to relive in our hearts the event which took place 40 years ago, the return of our Father and Founder after fourteen years of separation from his family…..his return to this place from which he was torn away on October 22, 1951. He then said to the small group which accompanied him here at the celebration of his last Holy Mass in the Original Shrine: "This time, the separation will not be as long as the first time." No one could foresee at this moment that this separation would not last three years but fourteen long years…..fourteen long years which not only meant an exterior separation. Continuously and from many places, dark and fateful predictions regarding him and his foundation would surface, suggesting that he would never return…..many times the dark clouds which loomed over him and his Family seemed to announce the sunset of his Work.

Now he returns anew: that day, more or less at this same hour, he entered here at the Original Shrine like a free man…..he knelt before the Blessed Mother and we only have to contemplate – with profound respect – that dialog of hearts between him and the Blessed Mother in that moment. In an even deeper sense, he has returned to this place, to this place where everything began. At that time, Sunday, October 18, 1914 – the first year of war – also at 5:00 P.M., there occurred here the great event which exteriorly was not very noteworthy. The new divine initiative as it has been mentioned by our Father is a reality. God has acted. He has intervened so that the Blessed Mother would establish Herself here.

At that moment, a holy history began - a fascinating and daring history. The main, human character of this history was he, the Founder. He has not only lived with….suffered through all the happenings, through all the stages of this history, but has also built it with his Family. And now he is here on his knees. He has returned to Her who was his Mother and his Queen… Her who was faithful and who accompanied him, and to whom he was also faithful in all the darkness and in all the unspeakable sufferings through which he was led with his Family throughout the long fourteen years. With respect and in silence we place ourselves before these mysterious events – occurring here between his heart and the heart of the Blessed Mother and vice versa. Afterward, all went to the hall of the Marian School where for the first time after fourteen years, Father Kentenich met anew with his Family in an open forum.

Later on we shall listen to his words on that occasion. Naturally, he knew that all eyes were not only centered on him but that hearts and souls were waiting for his words with total openness. The way in which he began is characteristic of him: "We could now remain on a more earthly level, sharing with you and together savoring later how it was that this day arrived and who are the ones who participated actively in this hour," referring with this to the fact of meeting anew with his Family. "But that is not my desire. With you I want to reach the stars, heaven." Then he allowed us to take a fleeting glance at what he carried in his soul when he said: "While traveling here, flying over the clouds, I remembered that centuries before, St. Augustine was also returning from the North of Africa toward Europe and like him, during the night, leaning on the mast of the boat, he continuously contemplated the sky and the stars."

And this untiring seeker of God reflects that the infinite and eternal God has woven plans, mysterious plans with his humanity and his people. Our Father also pointed to St. Paul who continuously tried – reflecting from the stand point of faith – to approach this mysterious plan of the infinite God. And in this way, this modern seeker of God told us what was going on in his heart and retaking the thread of the event attached to the Miracle of the Holy Night, he returned to the moment of the beginning of this expression and that image of the Miracle of the Holy Night….. the letter of Sr. Mariengart to the Christ Child written in 1941 during his first imprisonment.

And he reflects on what this infinite God – often incomprehensible for us men – has planned with Schoenstatt….. plans in which it is foreseen that the exterior separation with the Family would last 14 long years…..meditating on the meaning and the implications that are involved with all of this.

He then made two declarations which have been inscribed deeply into our hearts. The first: "In all those years and in all those dark nights, I never doubted, even for an instant, that one day I would return to my family." And later on he repeated a declaration which allowed us to penetrate into his interior world, reflecting on what moved him interiorly on that day, in that hour, in that event. He affirmed: "I never felt alone or abandoned when the hand of God gave me a heavy cross because I always knew that you carried that cross which God had entrusted to us with me." That is how that profound community of destinies and hearts was born.

These are the foundations on which Schoenstatt rests…..the unbreakable foundation of the Covenant of Love with the Blessed Mother and this inseparable interwovenness of destinies and fusion of hearts between the founder and his Family. If today we have gathered here with the aim of reliving a little bit in us what this event has brought along with itself and what it means for us, it is not simply to glance backward and to contemplate what occurred at that time. Our Father, with his lively awareness of the history, always counted on each glance into the past, on each intent to relive the experience of a determined historical moment to reaffirm at the same time the permanent mission and to project the way for the future.

That is, I believe, what our Father and Founder wants to tell us on this day, in this hour and in this place: Schoenstatt lives from the faith in the reality of the Covenant of Love and the interwovenness of destinies between the Founder and us, his Family. This is our way. We could ask our Mother Thrice Admirable: " accompany us on this journey. We want to go forward!"

Translation Carlos Cantú Family Federation La Feria, Texas USA

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