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 published: 2008-11-04

A Celebration and a new Challenge

Experiences of the October Week in Johannesburg, South Africa


Oktober-Wochenende in Johannesburg, Südafrika: Rosenkranz

Jornada de Octubre en Johannesburgo, Sudáfrica: rosario

October Weekend in Johannesburg, South Africa : rosary

Oktober-Wochenende in Johannesburg, Südafrika: Rosenkranz


Die erste Gruppe der Schönstatt-Gemeinschaft Berufstätige Frauen in Johannesburg

El primer grupo de la Rama de Profesionales

The first group of the Women’s League

Die erste Gruppe der Schönstatt-Gemeinschaft Berufstätige Frauen in Johannesburg

Fotos: Holding © 2008


SOUTH AFRICA, Sr. M. Joanne Petersen. On the weekend of 18 and 19 October, the Schoenstatt Family in Johannesburg, South Africa celebrated its October Weekend. Over the two days, about 140 people were present. The theme for the weekend was "Love leads us."

The weekend began with Mass in the Shrine, celebrated by Schoenstatt Father Michael Hagan. This was followed by Branch reportbacks of their highlights over the past year. A few events out of the many are mentioned just to give the reader an idea: A number of the Branches and the Sisters were heavily involved in the planning and running of the first diocesan synod to be held in the archdiocese of Johannesburg. The Mothers’ Union made a pilgrimage to Cape Town in order to follow in the footsteps of the founder in commemoration of the 60th anniversary of his visit to South Africa. A number of people committed to the Pilgrim Mother told of their work in a squatter camp where most of the people are unemployed and infected with HIV-AIDs. There are no churches in the area and they have established Pilgrim Mother groups whereby the people meet in their shacks around the Pilgrim Mother on Sundays in order to have a prayer service. The Pilgrim Mother is then passed on to the next family where the next prayer service will be held.

The talks were enjoyed by all and inspired us with new insights on Schoenstatt’s leadership based on the covenant of love. Fr Michael identified the characteristics of the leadership of love in Schoenstatt and Sr M Edith gave practical examples of the leadership of love in the lives of various of our Schoenstatt "saints".

Another highlight of the weekend which is always included on the programme are the community prayer sessions. The Womens’ League prepared a living rosary which incorporated the life of Fr Kentenich and St Paul. The Family League prepared a holy hour based on the virtues of St Paul.

Founding of the Schoenstatt Women's League in Johannesburg

The crowning celebration was the Mass on Sunday afternoon at which 7 members of the Womens’ League made their membership consecration and founded the Branch of the Womens’ League Branch for the Archdiocese of Johannesburg. It was a solemn moment as each member put a copy of her personal consecration prayer into the foundations of the Shrine. There is a special aperture on the wall behind Archangel Michael that reaches all the way down to the foundations for exactly this purpose.

Strengthened by a spiritual and joyful Schoenstatt diocesan family weekend, the Schoenstatt Family of Gauteng moves into 2009 under the motto "Love leads us to serve".



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Last Update: 04.11.2008