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 published: 2009-06-19

A promise kept

24 years since the arrival of the Pilgrim MTA in Paraguay


Heute ist die Kampagne in ganz Paraguay verbreitet

Hoy, la Campaña del Rosario está en todo el país

Today, the Schoenstatt Rosary Campaign is present in the entire country

Heute ist die Kampagne in ganz Paraguay verbreitet


24. Jahrestag der Ankunft der Pilgernden Gottesmutter: Kinder bringen Pilgerbilder zum Altar

24° aniversario de la llegada de la Virgen Peregrina: niños llevan peregrinas al altar

24th anniversary of the Campaign: children carrying Pilgrim MTAs to the altar

24. Jahrestag der Ankunft der Pilgernden Gottesmutter: Kinder bringen Pilgerbilder zum Altar

Sie ist der große Missionar...  

Ella es la gran misionera...

She is the great missionary...

Sie ist der große Missionar...

Fotos: Estela Franco © 2009


PARAGUAY, Ramón Marini. I am not going to relate a story. I am actually going to keep a promise; that is what Father Esteban Uriburu did a long time ago. He wrote the story of the Rosary Campaign in Paraguay and how everything began. Father Esteban is no longer physically with us, I will not hear him say again: "Ramón, perfection is the enemy of good, write something even if it is only a page." So here I am, keeping a promise, paying my humble, sincere tribute to a man, a FATHER, who knew how to interpret what God inspired through the Holy Spirit and who knew how to understand the message of our Father and Founder.

This story is written to express our gratitude to a Father knew how to infect us with his love for Mary, his enthusiasm was always renewed, his dreams were always "big", his giving of self was magnanimous even at the end.

A prophet of Mary

We met Father Esteban Uriburu at a Conference of Leaders when these were held at the Salesians’ retreat house in 1984. It was an unforgettable experience, since we had just read his book, A Prophet of Mary, of course we kept a copy with an autographed greeting in his handwriting.

At a moment that we could speak during the Conference, he commented in passing about a stream to again treasure the prayer of the Holy Rosary that had surged from the Shrine of Florencio Varela, furthermore, through the work of Providence, it had a connection with a man from Brazil who had begun this task more than thirty years ago. His task consisted in going to families and schools to pray the rosary.

After the Conference, Father Esteban stayed at the home of Malena and Armando Riquelme, who invited us to have lunch with them before taking Father to the airport. During this time, he spoke to us again about the "Rosary Action."

At the beginning of 1985, he wrote a card to the Riquelmes inviting them to go to Buenos Aires to receive a Pilgrim MTA. John Pozzobon, (the initiator of the Campaign) had given this Pilgrim MTA along with twenty-four others, and they had been blessed at the Schoenstatt Tabor Shrine of Santa Maria, Brazil, to be sent to the different countries in America.

A Pilgrim MTA for each Schoenstatt Shrine in America

At that time, we belonged to a group of the Family Branch along with the Riquelmes. Since Marité and I were going to travel to Buenos Aires, the group asked us to find out more about what Father Esteban had told us. We traveled to Buenos Aires, where we made contact with Cecilia and Carlos Adrogué, since the Pilgrim MTA that belonged to Paraguay was in their Home shrine. According to what Carlos told us, his daughter had participated in a pilgrimage to Santa Maria, this was when John Pozzobon had given a Pilgrim MTA for each Schoenstatt Shrine in America.

The Adrogué’s daughter was chosen by a drawing to be responsible for the Pilgrim MTA for our country. On the same night that we arrived in Buenos Aires, we contacted Carlos, who was doing some work at the Mater Dei Shrine. We met with him and with Ana and Guillermo Echeverria, and together we went to the home of Carlos and Cecilia.

Two white roses…

The meeting, which included conversation and a video, lasted from eight in the evening until four o’clock in the morning. Cecilia cut two white roses of the same size from her garden, one for Ana and the other for Marité, my wife. It was very clear to all of us that we were united in the same mission.

Just as we had agreed at the meeting Ana and Guillermo Echeverria brought the Pilgrim MTA and the solemnly presented it at Tuparenda on the 31st of May 1985 to begin the Campaign in our country. They brought five other Pilgrim MTAs as a gift from the Argentine Campaign to form the union of the task and grace.

Without much organization is how the Campaign began with six traveling Pilgrim MTAs. During this time, Father Claudio Jiménez, who is currently the Bishop of Caacupé, has been our adviser.

The small Pilgrim MTA given by John Pozzobon, which is now crowned, no longer travels among the families. It is our treasure.


Translation: Celina Garza, San Antonio, USA/amj



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Last Update: 19.06.2009