Posted On 2016-10-09 In Covenant Life

Mexico’s Schoenstatt Family’s National Ideal defined

MEXICO, Sister Mariana Chacón •

This year, the National Gathering of Leaders was a “historic moment” in the Mexican Schoenstatt Family.  We had searched for our National Ideal for two years, and it took until now for us to be ready to work on it and find it as a Family.

The leaders from the country’s different Branches met in the National Shrine “Loyal Heart of the Church. There were 113 people from seventeen places in Mexico (Monterrey, Torreón, Chihuahua, Monclova, Aguascalientes, San Luis Potosí, León, Campeche, Celaya, Querétaro, México City, Iguala, Guadalajara, Taxco, Chiapas, Guerrero, Tuxtla, and Campeche), fourteen priests (Schoenstatt Fathers and Diocesan Priests), a seminarian of the Schoenstatt Fathers and three Sisters of Mary.  The gathering’s atmosphere was marked by an expectant joy and a profound awareness of each participant’s responsibility.

Key concepts

Preparation for this gathering began in March when the advisers met to work on “key concepts” (which resulted from discussion groups from the previous two national gatherings – 2014/2013 – and although these were present intuitively, they turned out to be important for the Family). The words were: Family, Guadalupe, Loyalty and Mission. Four drafts with questions were drawn from them for all the groups to read and to arrive at a definition of the Family mission and a possible suggestion for the National Ideal.

All the Branches and leaders were asked – not only to look at the topics in their groups – but also to pray in a special way for this gathering. We knew that this was an important step in the development of the Mexican Schoenstatt Family, and that prayer would be essential for this step.   In preparation, we began to pray the Holy Spirit Prayer.

A Cenacle atmosphere

The gathering began on Friday, 2 September, and from the beginning, all the leaders were invited to continue in this atmosphere of prayer.  There was constant adoration in the Shrine from Friday at 9:00 a.m. until Sunday at 8:00 a.m. Those who wished to were invited to take one half hour of adoration, and the local Schoenstatt Family took the hours when there were discussion groups. One could sense an atmosphere of prayer throughout the entire weekend.

On Saturday, they worked in groups and more and more the content for the National Ideal took shape. That night those in charge of each of the eleven groups, along with some advisers met to define, work, emphasize, and to formulate the National Ideal.

While this took place, all the other leaders – united to the Schoenstatt Family in their Diocese – were united in a “Cenacle Hour” in the Shrine, imploring the Holy Spirit so that we would be permitted to discover our National Ideal.


Family, Guadalupe, Loyalty, Mission

We formulated our ideal:

“A Guadalupana Family, in covenant, loyal to Father’s Mission”

Family – is where men and women are forged, who should transform society, to form the new man in the new community.  Schoenstatt makes us a family, we feel united to God in the image of his Son, we feel Mary as our Mother.

The family is our being and mission, and it is the basic nucleus of society where God’s unconditional love and our vocation of service are manifested. It is the institution the Mexican people contribute as a seal of unity in our nation.

Guadalupe – upon saying Guadalupana, we refer to the Guadalupano event.  It is where Mary seals her first covenant with us in Tepeyac, she constitutes us as a nation, and she gives us the Mexican identity. Like Juan Diego, she chooses us as instruments to build her Shrine.

Covenant – with Mary as the center of our spirituality that we want to give the Church and Mexico, we live this covenant in the Shrine with the “Nothing without you, nothing without us,” where she educates us as apt instruments in her hands, taking us to everyday sanctity. This is the original form for us – Mexicans – to live being a Guadalupana Family.

Loyalty – is to give our “yes” to Mary, it is to remember the “Nothing without you, nothing without us.” John Paul II, one of the most beloved people in the history of our country, said that Mexico is always loyal.

To be loyal is to be unconditional despite the misunderstandings and persecutions before permitting ruptures between what is lived and what is believed.  This is also coherence.  Only that self-giving based on love can be called loyalty.

Father’s Mission – we want recognize and reaffirm Fr. Kentenich’s presence in the Schoenstatt Work.  To be instruments of Mary – as the father teaches us – to forge the new man in the new community. This gives us a sense of service and mission consciousness (Schoenstatt reaching out).

To be loyal to Father’s mission is to take Schoenstatt – the Work – as a whole that we want to assure to be loyal and to assume it completely.  The crisis of our time is the absence of the father, which is resolved with childlikeness. This is the importance of our attachment to him as the transparent reflection of God the Father.

Now it begins…

We still need to delve more deeply into our ideal, and we know that it will be an Ideal that will mark our history as a Schoenstatt Family from Mexico and that it will take an entire lifetime to carry out and fulfill.

Sunday we gathered around Father’s statue, and there the National Ideal was revealed to all the leaders. A true joy was shown and felt.  Then, we had Holy Mass to close the gathering, where we presented all this weekend’s work of each leader, each Branch, and each State in Mary and our Father’s hands.

We know that the Blessed Mother blessed us with this Ideal, and she waits for a response from the entire Mexican Schoenstatt Family. Now the work to assimilate it begins in making it known and seeing all the richness that we can obtain for our Family here.


Original: Spanish. Translation: Celina M. Garza, San Antonio, TX USA. Edited: Melissa Peña-Janknegt, Elgin, TX USA

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