The nativity scene and the Christmas tree in the Vatican, the heart of Catholicism, have a special meaning.
They usually reflect the concerns of each pontiff, and in Francis' case, migration is central. The nativity scene comes from the island of Malta. A land of migrants after World War II, it is now one of the places that receives the most migrants in the world.
CARD. GIUSEPPE BERTELLO, Governorate, Vatican City State
"The presence of a boat with which migrants brave the sea to get to Europe in search of a home and a better future is very revealing.”
The decorations of the nativity scene are typically Maltese; the architecture, the dresses, and even the boat, which is traditional fisher's boat in the island.
The 80-feet-tall tree is a wake up call for Europe, so it does not forget its migrant past. It comes from the Trentino region, in the north of Italy, a land that was also emptied by the great conflicts of the twentieth century.
MSGR. LAURO TISI, Archbishop of Trento (Italia)
"We cannot celebrate Christmas without remembering the tragedy of migrants. We cannot celebrate Christmas forgetting that we cannot find Christ when we reject immigrants.”
The Christmas tree decorations were made by children in the oncology branch of hospitals. The tree will be replaced by another forty exactly like it.
The nativity scene and the tree will decorate St. Peter's Square until January 8, 2017.
(Taken from Rome Reports)
under the Christmas tree
the little crib
you must stoop low
to see the CHILD
in a stable
you must be quiet
to hear his breathing
the seed of faith
you must let is grow
to feel the nearness of GOD.
Krippe in der Kapelle von Villa Paolina
From December 2-12, 2016 a group of formators from each Province/Region met in Paderborn for the ongoing formation of formators. The main purpose was to learn from Mother Pauline's letters essential aspects of initial and ongoing formation, having present the reality of our time and the challenges of formation of the young people who come to us today.
The following photos show a working session and the gathering at Mother Pauline's grave at the end of the meeting. More photos can be seen in the site "Photo Gallery".
Meeting of the Formators, Paderborn, December 2016 formators1.JPG formators2.JPG formators3.JPG formators4.JPG formators5.JPG formators6.JPG formators7.JPG formators8.JPG
Meeting of the Formators, Paderborn, December 2016
In Paderborn wurde in diesen Tagen des 140. Todestages von Luise Hensel gedacht, die am 18. Dezember 1876 in Paderborn starb. Sie war eine geschätzte Dichterin und Wohltäterin. Wir Schwestern wissen um ihren großen Einfluss auf die heranwachsende Pauline. Als Luise Hensel gegen Ende ihres Lebens erkrankte, nahm Mutter Pauline sie in das "Haus der Vorsehudng" auf, wo sie - der Überlieferung nach - im Beisein von Mutter Pauline starb.
Denkmal von Luise Hensel in Paderborn und ihr Grab auf dem Ostfriedhof in Paderboren
Everything depends upon the pure intention! Mary's great perfection consisted in this: she did and suffered all for God, in the most intimate union with him and his will, and for his greater glory.
Mother Pauline 1848
Let us imitate the meekness of Jesus, his humility, his love, his mildness, his zeal for souls and God’s honor, his spirit of penance. 1855
The cross is the real test of faith, the true foundation and source of hope, the perfect refinement of love, in a word, the way to heaven. 1859
It is precisely the cross which Jesus offers us which we ought to embrace with great willingness and not choose our own crosses. 1843
We must pray for love of the cross. Then frequently we shall see things in an entirely different light. 1855
With a joyful heart endeavor to accept little daily annoyances out if love for God, swallowing them like water. Try it. (1877
In all suffering God sends us he has his wise designs, and to those who love him everything turns out for the best. 1878