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 published: 2008-01-11

Christmas encounter, in solidarity as a family

Schoenstatt in the neighborhood of the Shrine


Liebevolles Herstellen von Jesuskindern

Creando Niños Dios para regalar

Creating “Baby Jesus” to give to many

Liebevolles Herstellen von Jesuskindern


Lebendige Krippe, dargestellt von der Missionsgruppe der Pfarrei San Patricio. Das Jesuskind ist Juan Bautista, Enkel von Marta Tavanti aus der Schönstatt-Familienbewegung

Sagrada familia interpretada por el grupo misionero de San Patricio. Niño Dios: Juan Bautista, nieto de Marta Tavanti, quien trabaja en la obra familiar de Schoenstatt.

Living manger performed by a group of St. Patrick’s parish. Baby Jesus is Juan Bautista, grandson of Marta Tavanti, of the Schoenstatt Family Movement

Lebendige Krippe, dargestellt von der Missionsgruppe der Pfarrei San Patricio. Das Jesuskind ist Juan Bautista, Enkel von Marta Tavanti aus der Schönstatt-Familienbewegung

Die Pfadfinder beim Einpacken der Geschenke mit Stella und Sivina  

Grupo Scout preparando los juguetes junto a Stella y Silvina (en el Campanario)

The Boy Scouts preparing the gifts together with Stella and Silvina

Die Pfadfinder beim Einpacken der Geschenke mit Stella und Sivina

Fotos: Maria Silvina Rocca © 2008


ARGENTINA, Stella Maris Bovera and Maria Silvina Rocca. Marta Tavanti, Stella Maris, and Maria Silvina Rocca , members of the Society of Fomento de Belgrano "R" and also missionaries of the Rosary Campaign, invited the neighbors to participate in a Christmas event. Many children accompanied by their families brought gifts to share with needy children. As missionaries of the Campaign, they wanted to show their interest for the neighborhood in which they live, and they wanted to contribute creative ideas. For this reason they decided to give small pictures of the Child Jesus to the needy that would be taken to the hospitals and the homes for the elderly.

Begrano "R" to differentiate it from Belgrano "C", the names of the urban train station, is one of the oldest and most traditional neighborhoods of Buenos Aires. In the 19th century it was an area of country homes and large summer residences. This peaceful character is still preserved with tree lined streets and large traditional houses. It’s interesting to see it with the GoogleEarth program to appreciate the arboreal foliage that characterizes it. The Schoenstatt Sisters of Mary have resided here since 1949 at 3632 Echeverria Street in a beautiful old house surrounded by a large garden, and where the first Shrine in the territory of the federal capital was built in 1963. The Parish of Saint Patrick, led by the Irish Pallotine Fathers, which will be mentioned in this article is located three blocks from there –also on Echeverria Street. Castelli Square is also on this street where Father Noel or Santa Cluas appeared thanks to the initiative of three missionaries of the Rosary Campaign, who are also members of the Society of Fomento in the neighborhood.

Saint Nicolas in Castelli Square

Father Noel or Santa Claus is the Christmas personality, which in reality represents Saint Nicolas de Bari. This saint inherited great riches from his family, which he distributed among the poorest children, and he is in some way considered the patron saint of children. He appeared in his red suit, his white beard and with his bag on his shoulder (thanks to a neighbor in the neighborhood) at Castelli Square in a carriage pulled by

horses that can be rented to ride through some parks in Buenos Aires. He greeted, smiled, and gave candy to the smallest ones. A touching moment during the event was when he went to the Holy Family represented by a missionary group from the Parish of Saint Patrick. He bowed respectfully before the Child God and in an ecumenical spirit

of solidarity with the Anglican Community, the Beth-el Jewish Community –both who have headquarters in the neighborhood – and to the Catholic community united with one desire:

That these celebrations would be an encounter with God, with the love of each creed, in order to grow in the school of the family, cradle and custody of human and divine life, a place where man can learn to love, to give, and to transcend. This is what Schoenstatt has always taught…

The three missionaries had prepared small pictures of the Child Jesus to give to the children of the neighborhood. Many children had asked for these pictures, so Stella Maris got to work and they decided to make more…

Going forth to encounter the children in these celebrations…

Thanks to the solidarity of the neighbors, one hundred fifty toys were collected to distribute; they were kept in Saint Patrick’s Parish bell tower. Two missionaries and some youth wrapped and tagged the toys. Suddenly and to the amazement of everyone, a little medal of Saint Michael the Archangel was found amid the packages that didn’t belong to any of the gifts. The children commented that a scout group is called Saint Michael the Archangel Rover Group. One of the youth said, "this seems to be a sign, we could not figure out how this little medal of Saint Michael the Archangel had appeared among so many toys." The missionaries were also amazed, because it’s a statue that’s found in all the Schoenstatt Shrines. They explained the meaning that Saint Michael has for Schoenstatters to the youth.

This was a great surprise from the Three Kings that the Blessed Mother gave those who were in the bell tower of the parish (where the scouts meet) working to bring joy to many children during the Feast of the Three Kings, who are sometimes forgotten because of other events that distract attention from them.

A petition for Saint Nicolas

What was the most touching thing? Saint Nicolas received a very special petition: "I do not want toys: I want you to bring my father and mother back home, because we are no longer together."

May our prayers help to fulfill this petition.

Translation: Celina Garza, Harlingen, TX, USA/amj



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Last Update: 15.01.2008