BRAZIL, Jaqueline Montoya/Alessandra Veras •
During the weekend of 11-12 September in Atibaia, Brazilian state of São Paulo, the Shrine of Father’s Permanent Presence was invaded by the joy and enthusiasm of the Schoenstatt Girls’ Youth members, as they held their regional meeting. More than 220 young girls from twenty-three cities from the southeastern region and from Paraná renewed their passion for the ideal and were sent out from the Shrine. They took with them the mission of being little Marys for new times, as the Founder, Fr. Joseph Kentenich asked.
The motto of the year: “Merciful like the Father, Tabor for new times,” allowed the young girls to deepen in this current of life. They celebrated eighteen new Covenants of Love, and they had a special conference with Sr. Doria Schlickmann, the author of several books about Joseph Kentenich.
“We did not come to this world to live on a sofa where we fall asleep”
“The gathering was wonderful. Every moment was intense, and I was able to profoundly experience the Blessed Mother’s love for me, and to intensify my desire to always become her mirror in the world, and leave her maternal mark on all the actions of my day to day. Every moment was enriching and important for my ideal of being “Father’s lily,” Aline Silva, from Guarapuava, summarized.
The first subject of the day was about the Pope’s message for the youth. Inspired by Pope Francis’ words during World Youth Day in Poland that took place in July. The girls were challenged to leave comforts aside to live high ideals.
The Pope said, “We did not come to this world to vegetate, to be comfortable, and to live life on a sofa where we fall asleep. On the contrary, we come to leave a mark.” What mark? This springboard invited every girl to mediate for a moment, and then write down that mark, so it would become a commitment.
A very special visit marked the afternoon; Sr. Doria Schlickmann, who wrote some books about the Founder of the Schoenstatt Movement, and who was in Brazil to present some conferences, spoke with the Girls’ Youth about “The road to freedom – To find inner beauty.”
They had a Holy Mass, which besides strengthening each girl spiritually, it also welcomed eighteen girls in their Covenant of Love with the Blessed Mother.
5 “new times” Testimonies
There were also special moments on Sunday! After Morning Prayer and the celebration of Holy Mass, where they reflected once again on God’s mercy, the reading of the Gospel about the Prodigal Son provided the theme to work on: “Tabor for the new times,” which was the final motivation so the girls could leave Atibaia enthused and willing to change the atmosphere in which they live.
The girls had an opportunity to hear the last “little push” about how to live the ideal. Five girls gave their testimonies about how to live Tabor in the new times in society, in the Girls’ Youth, at work, in love, and in the Church, as was Lareane Machado’s case who is from Curtiba and who shared her experience of World Youth Day in Poland.
Original: Portuguese. Translation: Celina M. Garza, San Antonio, TX USA. Edited: Melissa Peña-Janknegt, Elgin, TX USA