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August 6, 2019 was a special day for both of us, Sr Friska Maria Purba and Sr Betris Juliana Situmorang. This day also the universal Church celebrated the feast of the transfiguration. On this day we make our final profession in Jogjakarta, together with the sisters, families, friends and Claretian brothers we celebrated this special day solemnly. We thank God for the gift of Claretian vocation, His grace who always accompanying us along our journey till the moment we commit ourselves to Him through the congregation. We thank the sisters in the congregation who accepted us to be forever in the congregation. Sr Friska and I made a summary of our ten days’ retreat that is only to stay with Him always, we will be experiencing the the true JOY. Once again we thank each one of you who pray for the whole preparation of this speacial event, may God reward your kindness. Thank you to you all who make this event happened.
By: Betris J Situmorang rmi
On August 3, 2019, in the Parish of Santa María de Kimwenza (R.D. of Congo), Sister Elysee, Helene, Liliane, and Valerie, professed perpetually in the hands of Petronille, general prefect of formation. The Eucharistic Celebration, presided by the Father Delegate Jean Baptiste Makilandi cmf, and participated, by relatives, friends, Claretian Sisters, Claretian Fathers, and religious men and women of other Congregations. It was an invitation to the total commitment of life with fidelity and poverty in the style of Jesus, as did our founders Claret and Paris. After Mass, we all shared the Joy of the generous Yes of our sisters.
We thank God for the life of each one of them and ask that they always be faithful, through the intercession of Mary Immaculate Patroness of our Congregation.
The National Youth Day in Santiago de Cuba, has not been a concrete event, but a process of deepening and living one’s Faith. A journey lasting three years, which have not yet ended. Since the 2016 National Youth Day in Havana, annouced that the next venue would be Santiago de Cuba. A challenge for the Archdiocese, but with much confidence, joy and hope we embraced this dream and from the moment our city was announced.
We wanted to make the JNJ in Santiago a jouney or a process, instead of justa n event, which likely would not be meaningful for Young people. Therefore, the goal for 2017 to 2019 was to form, “Missionary Disciples for the Cuban Church of Today”.
Although it has been a lot of work, effort, much greater i sour dream and joy of living out the JNJ with a burning, passionate heart and with the only desire that it be a means where young people could enconter Jesus and meet others who seek the same in their lives.
With great joy, I had the Grace to share this experience with Gabriela Bázquez rmi. Our junior’s sister, who lives in Mexico and with Jackie Gadea and Marianela Roubiceck two Young women from the Hispanic Youth Ministry in Miami, Florida. They served and worked with everyone, and poured their whole heart to the mission.
The World Youth Day (WYD) (JMJ in spanish) in Panama, was another big boost that helped increase the youth’s expectations of the JNJ in Santiago event from a national event consisting of one venue, to an event consisting of 11 venues, correspondig to the 11 dioceses in the Island. It was a great test for us; discouragements, disappointments, pain and much helplessness filled our hearts when we first learned of the news. However, it was a way of looking back at the only true center, Jesus. And from Him, we moved on with everything, without fear, with confidence and hope in Him.
The difficulties did not stop there, the authorities did not allow the other venues to carry out public procession of the Stations of the Cross through the streets, it was only allowed in Santiago de Cuba and not on the agreed route. Nothing stopped the almost 900 young people and general public from Santiago accompanying Jesus, carrying his Cross, and all the crosses that this town carries.
Prior to August 1st, each catechetical center of the city was prepared with great care: decoration, food, and housing accommodation whith neighboring families. We became aware that adopting families recived one or more children for two days. All of this fosters a sense of community and co-responsibility of our Church. On the first of the event, young pilgrims began arriving, each being welcomed in our parishes. Two more dioceses joined us, Guantánamo-Baracoa and Bayamo-Manzanillo, which is why reached a capacity of 900 young participants. The inauguration took place at the Cathedral, that night songs, and beautiful moments of prayer. In prayer, we asked God, whith the intercession of our holy Patrons San Antonio María Claret, Blessed José López Piteira, Saint John Paul II, Venerable Felix Varela and Blessed Dolores Sopeña, all whom are covered by the Maternal mantle of Our Lady of Charity that these days, be filled with great meaningful experience for each person.
The following day, on Friday 2 we began with the Eucharist and sent off the youth to their mission. Throughout the morning, the young people walked the sectors of each catechetical center announcing the Word and inviting everyone the Station of the Cross. In the afternoon, we hosted the "Christ-Fair", consisting of seven stations located in different sections. And dusk the Station of the Cross proceeded through the streets of the city to the Cathedral, where the last 5 stations were represented. Everyone walking the streets wore white shirts and caps, prayed and sang out loud and above all, we lived deeply every moment.
On Saturday we prepared ourselves with the a catechism that centered around everything that we have lived, from the experience of our Blesses mother Mary, her availability and service to the God's project, which is an invitation, and a call to each one of us. At night we held a beautiful vigil, which began with procession in the street praying a Rosary all the way to the Sanctuary of our Lady of Charity. When we arrived, we encountered Jesus in Blessed Sacrament of the Altar; which concluded whith mass and an evening concert until next morning. Every moment was lived whith great intensity. An I believe with great convivtion, that it is a call to a mission for and with Jesus. We were presented with many obstacles from the authorities who wanted to extinguish the flame that moves us as Christians, but they simply AVOIDED IT, because with Jesus we cannot be defeated. For me, all this way and specifically this JNJ was a “shake” of Faith, a strong call to conviction that we should be a more “prophetic” Church, an invitation to Hope, to the firm clarity that “only God is enough … ”And to understand the central point of our Religious Family,“ We are born for the Renewal of the Church ”, it is urgent, it is necessary. It revives my missionary vocation, a fight against evil, in any of its forms, like Mary.
Sandra C. Mancia rmi.
HE CLARETIAN FAMILY WENT, SOLD, SHARED, AND FOLLOWED CHRIST IN SOLIDARITY IN EAST TIMOR: AEYG 2019 + CF CELEBRATED
Dili, East Timor. Aware of the realities and challenges of East and Southeast Asia, the Claretian Family gathered once again, celebrating as a family the Asian Claretians East Youth Gathering 2019 in Claretian Family or commonly known as AEYG 2019 + CF. The theme was “Solidarity: Go, Sell, Share and Follow” based on the Biblical text Mt 19:16-26; Lk 10:25-37. The talks, sharing, tours, day and night activities were all in line with it.
The biennial gathering was held this year at the Our Lady of Fatima Retreat House in Dare, Dili, Timor Leste from August 5 to 11, 2019 with 125 participants from the mission posts of the Claretian Missionaries of East Asia Independent Delegation (China, Hong Kong, Japan, Taiwan), Korea Independent Delegation (South Korea), Indonesia – Timor Leste Independent Delegation (Indonesia, East Timor), Philippine Province (Australia, Philippines, Myanmar, Vietnam); Asia Province of the Religious of Mary Immaculate Claretian Missionary Sisters (RMI); Missionaries of St. Anthony Mary Claret (MSAMC) missions in Indonesia and Philippines; and the laity of Dili and Indonesia. There were 50 members of the organizing committee.
Bishop of Dili, Most Rev. Virgilio do Carmo da Silva, SDB, DD, celebrated the opening Mass on the second day and at the same time gave the participants a session on “Solidarity in the context of Timor Leste’s Church.”
Bro. Carlos Verga, CMF, General Prefect of Youth and Vocation Ministry of the Claretian Missionaries was also present and gave a talk on solidarity in the Claretian Family congregation.
Sr. Geraldine S. Eusabius, RMI, the Prefect of Apostolic Mission of South Asian Delegation of the RMI, was also one of the invited resource speakers, to talk to young people about: “Solidarity in the Charism of SAMC”.
The organizing committee was very thankful to the national government of East Timor who fully supported the event from the reception of the visitors in the country as well as in some of its needs. The minister of Minister of Education Youth and Sports of Timor-Leste, Her Excellency, Ms. Dulce Soares, RDTL even gave a talk on “The Youth Participation in the Development of the Society in Timor-Leste.”
During the farewell Mass, event coordinator, Fr. Emanuel Lelo Talok, CMF on behalf of the Delegation Government of Indonesia-Timor Leste and the Claretian Family of the same, thanked all those who have been part of the event and said: “If there is a well in the field, may we take a bath together. If there is a long life of ours, may we meet again.”
Here are some of the comments of the participants:
Roberto Joao Bosco Salsinya Soares a 17-year-old participant from East Timor said “I found AEYG as a useful tool to help us youth foster unity and solidarity, to gain compassion and feeling of empathy and to change ourselves. I find it as a good program in developing the youth.”
“This is my first time to attend AEYG and this is the most wonderful experience I have. Hopefully with this experience encourage the young people to be in solidarity with others,” says Sarlince Eufemia Rae, a 23-year-old native lady of Nurobo, Indonesia.
“This AEYG 2019 + CF in Dare, Timor Leste is really a great experience for us, to learn, to understand, to respect each other’s diversity. Through this, we are sharing our self to others but first we must learn to open ourselves to other people, through this we are making known Jesus Christ to other people. Thus, we are in solidarity, sharing what we have to others regardless if you are rich or poor. Sharing oneself without conditions. Thank you, Timor, for the love and hospitality we felt. This won’t impose all my precious learnings and experiences but once again, obrigado for everything! God bless us all and see you in Ormoc, Philippines in 2021,” says 22-year-old Gerald Abastillas of the Philippines.
AEYG 2021 + CF is set to rock and roll the youth in Ormoc City, Philippines. In time for the 75th Anniversary of the Claretian Presence of the Claretian Missionaries in the said country.
Dear sisters: A hug for all from 11 itinerants, Ana María and Amilibia!
The second stage has been a very rich experience of evoking and visiting the places of the youth and Vocational life of Claret and Paris. This stage was guided by Consuelo Ferrus. First we evoked the experience of what happened in the lives of our Founders from their writings; then we visited through their footsteps; to conclude with that same itinerary in our personal history.
In the first stage We made the tour in Tarragona and followed the vocational itinerary of María Antonia. This time we were with Claret to Encounter his youth.
On the 26th of July we left very early in the morning to Vic, to meet our Fr. Founder. We arrived to the mother house of the Claretian Missionaries, and from there Fr. Joseph Rovira at a steady pace guided us through the walks of young seminarian, Claret: the house of the family where he was staying, the Church of the oratory of Saint Philip Neri where he went to ask for advice, the Church of Our Lady of Sorrows, the building of the seminary where he studied, the Cathedral, where he preached to crowds and some years later where he was consecrated as bishop, the avenues and the narrow streets of picturesque Vic.
We returned to the Claretian house where Fr. Carlos was waiting for us to take us to our Father Founder, and to several martyrs of the war of 1936. There in the crypt we celebrated the thanksgiving Mass, praising God for all the good things we received and for the gift of life of Nidiagnis and Anna.
At about 20,30 we arrived in the community of Barcelona, where our sisters waited for us with dinner: as in all our houses we experienced the joy and happiness of meeting all. Rosario and Agnieszka guided the tour to the museum and the room of Teresita Albarracín and to the prayer in the chapel along with her remains.
Saturday 27th we began the day by visiting the cathedral of Barcelona and the “Sagrada Familia” a true encounter of the Art that God has gifted and Sunday 28 we visited Barcelona from the great ramp, the port and the Lonja de Mar where fine art courses were taught, Claret studied there to perfect himself in textile drawing, Spanish and French grammar. We have seen the boarding house where he stayed with his brother and the houses of some relatives in Barcelona, passing through the oratory of Saint Philip Neri and the Church of Sts. Justo and Pastor where we participated in Sunday Mass, We finished our tour in the Church of Santa Maria del Mar where Claret had made his fervent and persuasive voice as a missionary from the pulpit.
The celebration of the Mass in Saints Justo and Pastor, signified a "sacrament" of the call to Claret for us, there we also felt called by Christ our Shepherd: "What does it profit a man to win the whole world if he loses his soul?".
Filled with joy we returned to Reus to immerse ourselves with our personal Vocation, which will be another intense and beautiful experience.
Blessed be Lord for such a goodness!