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 published: 2009-04-03

The Blessed Mother in Colonias Unidas

A dream was born – and came true


Tagung der Familienbewegung in Tuparenda. Die Ramos in Hohenau vermissten all das...

Encuentro de la Obra Familiar en Tuparenda. Los Ramos en Hohenau extrañaron de todo eso...

Retreat of the Schoenstatt Family Movement in Tuparenda. The Ramos in Hohenau missed all of that…

Tagung der Familienbewegung in Tuparenda. Die Ramos in Hohenau vermissten all das...

Foto: Pereira © 2009


Karte des Bezirks Itaipú

Mapa del distrito de Itapúa

Map of the districto of Itapúa

Karte des Bezirks Itapúa

Foto: Hugo Diay Lavigne/gnu license

Ruinen der Jesuiten-Mission bei Colonias Unidas  

Ruinas de las Misiones Jesuiticas cerca de Colonias Unidas

Ruins of the Jesuit Missions near Colonias Unidas

Ruinen der Jesuiten-Mission bei Colonias Unidas

SOS-Kinderdorf in Hohenau...  

Aldea SOS en Hohenau...

SOS Children’s Village in Hohenau...

SOS-Kinderdorf in Hohenau...

...Arbeitsplatz von Ehepaar Franco  

... Lugar de trabajo de los Franco

... Workplace of the Franco ’s

...Arbeitsplatz von Ehepaar Franco

Fotos: Archiv © 2009


PARAGUAY, Concepción de Ramos. I want to tell you how the Blessed Mother used her power of love to found the Family Branch in Hohenau, one of the three cities that form Colonias Unidas, Paraguay, a city of some 10,000 inhabitants in the Itapúa Department, founded by German immigrants in 1900, and located few kilometers Trinidad, with the broadest and best conserved Jesuit Mission in Paraguay, and 365 kilometers away from Asunción.

I am Concepción de Ramos, in 2006 I moved with my family to Hohenau; there were no plans for the future nor steady work at this place, to the point that my husband who is a plastic surgeon continues to travel to Asunción even now. But we decided to move seeking a better quality of life that would be healthier and more peaceful.

Once we were settled, I decided to meet the neighbor who has a ceramic image of the Blessed Mother of Schoenstatt on the wall of her house (I introduced myself to her as her sister). To her surprise I calrified that the same Blessed Mother unites us as sisters, and that is how a beautiful friendship between our families began; now they are our son, Ricardo’s, Confirmation god-parents.

I began the catechesis for Confirmation at the Saint Blas School at the beginning of the year 2007; the first thing I discovered was Catholic apathy. What did I miss the most of Asunción? Our group, circle 30, our Schoenstatt Masses? Everything! I missed everything related to Schoenstatt.

Should we be the ones to found Schoenstatt in Hohenau?

A dream was born! Should it be that we, the Ramos, could meet with other couples of dreamers to found the Family Branch here? Is that what Father wants? Is this the desire of the Blessed Mother?; we believe it is. We spoke with Sonia and José Caracho, our nehigbors who have the Picture of the Blessed Mother in their home –who have loved the Blessed Mother for 11 years as a result of a beautiful experience, and that is how we began the invitations; we spoke with Father Antonio and he told us to go forward! That is how we began in the year 2007, with weekend visits from the Ramirez, a couple, who from came from Ciudad del Este to nearby Encarnación once a month. We discovered that it was not easy to gather couples on the days that the Ramirez were here; summer vacation arrived and it seemed that we would not be able to gather a group.

The Blessed Mother was not willing to abandon her plan

But the Blessed Mother was not willing to abandon this dream. By the beginning of the year 2008, Ricardo Franco became the director of the SOS Children’s Village in Hohenau. He and his wife Blanca belong to the Federation of Families, this meant we had all the support and Schoenstatt knowledge needed at hand, and could meet any day of the week, and my husband, Tomás and I along with the Caracho began to invite other couples once again.

The first meeting was set for the 31st of May with the motto: "Father, here I am, your mission is my mission". The members of Course 13 participated: Blanca and Ricardo Franco, Sandra and Gustavo Cortázar, Griselda and José Ferreira, Ana and Pastor Mongelos. We met at our home with six couples from colonias unidas: Sonia and José Zaracho, Nilda and Anuncio Barrios, Raquel and Daniel Báez, Regina and Jaime Beczko, Graciela and Alberto Mereles, Analia and Roque Zarza.

We began this beautiful dream that has slowly become a reality. Then two more couples joined: Maria Inés and Ronald Bolla, Alba and Horacio Carísimo

Presently there are 8 couples, we have started the meetings following the pedagogical itinerary. My husband, Tomás and I are in charge, Ricardo and Blanca Franco and Victor Chamorro – who is working in Encarnación – are our advisers. Father Antonio has already visited us and recently Sister Enda presented a beautiful talk.

We are the founding couples of the Family Branch in Colonias Unidas

Now we understand why we came to live in this beautiful place where we were received with so much love by the society, where our children Tatiana and Ricardo are happy, where we desire to carry forward Father’s mission, where we can contibute our grain of sand to the Church, where being Catholic perhaps we are a minority …but we believe that by holding Mary’s hand we can.

We are immensely happy about the small accomplishments, we feel "big" with the Blessed Mother. "WE ARE THE FOUNDING COUPLES OF THE FAMILY BRANCH OF COLONIA UNIDAS". We understand the hearts of the founders in Tuparenda, we unite with them in prayer and we joyfully acclaim the mission of "nothing without you, nothing without us".

The desire that Blessed Mother be the educator and guide for every family in Colonias Unidas, just as she was for her beloved son, beats intensely in our hearts. I send my love to every Schoenstatt Family with immense joy and profound emotion.

Translation: Celina Garza, San Antonio, USA




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Last Update: 03.04.2009