At the conclusion of the Year of Consecrated Life it is good to remember the Message of the Pope that he addressed to us at the beginning. Here only a short excerpt:

I expect that each form of consecrated life will question what it is that God and people today are asking of them.

The creativity of the Spirit has generated ways of life and activities so diverse that they cannot be easily categorized or fit into ready-made templates. So I cannot address each and every charismatic configuration. Yet during this Year no one can feel excused from seriously examining his or her presence in the Church’s life and from responding to the new demands constantly being made on us, to the cry of the poor.

Only by such concern for the needs of the world, and by docility to the promptings of the Spirit, will this Year of Consecrated Life become an authentic kairos, a time rich in God’s grace, a time of transformation.

APOSTOLIC LETTER OF POPE FRANCIS TO ALL CONSECRATED PEOPLE ON THE OCCASION OF THE YEAR OF CONSECRATED LIFE, Nr. 5

Estamos en el mes de María, mes de peregrinación a un Santuario mariano. Hna. Pamela Elena, la Novicia de Chile, y Hna. Adalberta hicieron una peregrinación al Santuario del Divino Amore en Roma. Hna. Pamela Elena cuenta de sus impresiones:

 Divino Amore

 “Una de las torres de una caseta de vigilancia, conocido como el Castel di Leva, estaba decorada con un medieval aire libre, una imagen de la Virgen sentada en un trono con el Niño Jesús en brazos y con la paloma descendiente sobre ella como el símbolo del Espíritu Santo, que es el Divino Amor. La imagen, pintada en fresco en esa misma época, era muy venerada por los pastores de la zona. En 1740, un peregrino fue atacado por perros furiosos cerca de la puerta de entrada y, según a la tradición, fue salvado por la intercesión de la Santísima Virgen María.  Como resultado de la cantidad de peregrinos atraídos por este sitio, una capilla fue construida y la imagen de la Virgen fue trasladada a la misma” (información  de la página web: http://www.santuariodivinoamore.it/es.html).

 Así conocí por primera vez este hermoso santuario que se encuentra a la salida de la ciudad de Roma. En la entrada se observa la torre donde ocurrió el primer milagro, es una réplica de la pintura original que se encuentra en el antiguo santuario, sin duda es María quien acoge y recibe al peregrino, desde su ingreso ya el lugar llama a vivir un clima de armonía y paz, propio para la oración y el recogimiento. El lugar cuenta con un antiguo santuario donde se venera el cuadro de la Santísima Virgen y donde con frecuencia se realizan las celebraciones litúrgicas, el lugar es sencillo y sobrecogedor. Cercano a ella una capilla pequeña con espacios para la oración y el silencio con exposición permanente del Santísimo Sacramento.

Como el recinto es una especie de castillo antiguo se observan unos pabellones donde también se puede encontrarse uno con el silencio y la oración, en la antigua cripta donde descansan los restos de Don Umberto Terenzi siervo de Dios rector e impulsor del santuario, y del matrimonio Beato Luigi y Maria Beltrame Quattrocchique. Un poco más distante se expone en una sala imágenes de la Virgen de distintos lugares del mundo, admirar toda la variedad de imágenes toma bastante tiempo sobre todo si se observan muy en detalle.

En un amplio espacio amplio y más alejado se encuentra una construcción mucho más nueva aquí se encuentra la iglesia nueva para más de 3000 personas, una pequeña capilla al lado que también se ha usado como capilla de adoración y un auditórium que puede albergar a un gran número de personas. Siendo ésta aprovechada por su iluminación natural es más espaciosa y ofrece un confortable espacio para permanecer en la oración y reflexión durante un prolongado tiempo.

Exteriormente se observan las colinas amplias las cuales se pueden recorrer. Si se quiere seguir manteniendo el clima de silencio, se encuentra la gruta de la Virgen de Lourdes y la cueva del profeta Elías, en que para quienes les es difícil estar a puertas cerradas, puede así lograr en estos apacibles lugares el espacio para la oración.

Solo he descrito una pequeña parte de éste lugar, en tenido la bendición de hacer retiros acá, saliendo muy confortada y agradecida por la bendición de visitar este santuario mariano. La imagen de María del Divino Amore es sin duda el mayor consuelo para un peregrino, especialmente cuando se encuentra en aflicciones como le sucedió a aquel señor que fue salvado de la jauría de perros y en su aflicción clamó a María y ella lo salvó, así podemos sentirnos nosotros también rescatados por ella.

Hna Pamela Elena. 

 

MESSAGE OF POPE FRANCIS
FOR THE 52nd WORLD DAY OF PRAYER
FOR VOCATIONS

26 APRIL 2015 

Theme: Exodus, a fundamental experience of vocation

Dear Brothers and Sisters,

The Fourth Sunday of Easter offers us the figure of the Good Shepherd who knows his sheep: he calls them, he feeds them and he guides them. For over fifty years the universal Church has celebrated this Sunday as the World Day of Prayer for Vocations. In this way she reminds us of our need to pray, as Jesus himself told his disciples, so that “the Lord of the harvest may send out labourers into his harvest” (Lk 10:2). Jesus command came in the context of his sending out missionaries. He called not only the twelve Apostles, but another seventy-two disciples whom he then sent out, two by two, for the mission (cf. Lk 10:1-6). Since the Church “is by her very nature missionary” (Ad Gentes, 2), the Christian vocation is necessarily born of the experience of mission. Hearing and following the voice of Christ the Good Shepherd, means letting ourselves be attracted and guided by him, in consecration to him; it means allowing the Holy Spirit to draw us into this missionary dynamism, awakening within us the desire, the joy and the courage to offer our own lives in the service of the Kingdom of God.

To offer one’s life in mission is possible only if we are able to leave ourselves behind. On this 52nd World Day of Prayer for Vocations, I would like reflect on that particular “exodus” which is the heart of vocation, or better yet, of our response to the vocation God gives us. When we hear the word “exodus”, we immediately think of the origins of the amazing love story between God and his people, a history which passes through the dramatic period of slavery in Egypt, the calling of Moses, the experience of liberation and the journey toward the Promised Land. The Book of Exodus, the second book of the Bible, which recounts these events is a parable of the entire history of salvation, but also of the inner workings of Christian faith. Passing from the slavery of the old Adam to new life in Christ is a event of redemption which takes place through faith (Eph 4:22-24). This passover is a genuine “exodus”; it is the journey of each Christian soul and the entire Church, the decisive turning of our lives towards the Father.

At the root of every Christian vocation we find this basic movement, which is part of the experience of faith. Belief means transcending ourselves, leaving behind our comfort and the inflexibility of our ego in order to centre our life in Jesus Christ. It means leaving, like Abraham, our native place and going forward with trust, knowing that God will show us the way to a new land. This “going forward” is not to be viewed as a sign of contempt for one’s life, one’s feelings, one’s own humanity. On the contrary, those who set out to follow Christ find life in abundance by putting themselves completely at the service of God and his kingdom. Jesus says: “Everyone who has left home or brothers or sisters or father or mother or children or lands, for my name’s sake, will receive a hundredfold, and inherit eternal life” (Mt 19:29). All of this is profoundly rooted in love. The Christian vocation is first and foremost a call to love, a love which attracts us and draws us out of ourselves, “decentring” us and triggering “an ongoing exodus out of the closed inward-looking self towards its liberation through self-giving, and thus towards authentic self-discovery and indeed the discovery of God” (Deus Caritas Est, 6)

MESSAGE OF POPE FRANCIS
FOR THE 52nd WORLD DAY OF PRAYER
FOR VOCATIONS

26 APRIL 2015 

Theme: Exodus, a fundamental experience of vocation

Dear Brothers and Sisters,

The Fourth Sunday of Easter offers us the figure of the Good Shepherd who knows his sheep: he calls them, he feeds them and he guides them. For over fifty years the universal Church has celebrated this Sunday as the World Day of Prayer for Vocations. In this way she reminds us of our need to pray, as Jesus himself told his disciples, so that “the Lord of the harvest may send out labourers into his harvest” (Lk 10:2). Jesus command came in the context of his sending out missionaries. He called not only the twelve Apostles, but another seventy-two disciples whom he then sent out, two by two, for the mission (cf. Lk 10:1-6). Since the Church “is by her very nature missionary” (Ad Gentes, 2), the Christian vocation is necessarily born of the experience of mission. Hearing and following the voice of Christ the Good Shepherd, means letting ourselves be attracted and guided by him, in consecration to him; it means allowing the Holy Spirit to draw us into this missionary dynamism, awakening within us the desire, the joy and the courage to offer our own lives in the service of the Kingdom of God.

To offer one’s life in mission is possible only if we are able to leave ourselves behind. On this 52nd World Day of Prayer for Vocations, I would like reflect on that particular “exodus” which is the heart of vocation, or better yet, of our response to the vocation God gives us. When we hear the word “exodus”, we immediately think of the origins of the amazing love story between God and his people, a history which passes through the dramatic period of slavery in Egypt, the calling of Moses, the experience of liberation and the journey toward the Promised Land. The Book of Exodus, the second book of the Bible, which recounts these events is a parable of the entire history of salvation, but also of the inner workings of Christian faith. Passing from the slavery of the old Adam to new life in Christ is a event of redemption which takes place through faith (Eph 4:22-24). This passover is a genuine “exodus”; it is the journey of each Christian soul and the entire Church, the decisive turning of our lives towards the Father.

At the root of every Christian vocation we find this basic movement, which is part of the experience of faith. Belief means transcending ourselves, leaving behind our comfort and the inflexibility of our ego in order to centre our life in Jesus Christ. It means leaving, like Abraham, our native place and going forward with trust, knowing that God will show us the way to a new land. This “going forward” is not to be viewed as a sign of contempt for one’s life, one’s feelings, one’s own humanity. On the contrary, those who set out to follow Christ find life in abundance by putting themselves completely at the service of God and his kingdom. Jesus says: “Everyone who has left home or brothers or sisters or father or mother or children or lands, for my name’s sake, will receive a hundredfold, and inherit eternal life” (Mt 19:29). All of this is profoundly rooted in love. The Christian vocation is first and foremost a call to love, a love which attracts us and draws us out of ourselves, “decentring” us and triggering “an ongoing exodus out of the closed inward-looking self towards its liberation through self-giving, and thus towards authentic self-discovery and indeed the discovery of God” (Deus Caritas Est, 6)

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