ARGENTINA, Pamela and Álvaro Pagalday, Lilita and Carlos Ricciardi •
On Saturday, October 15th, couples who are members of the League, Institute and Federation of the Region of Father’s Liberation met at the Schoenstatt Family House in the city of La Plata, to recall the history of the beginnings of the Family Work in La Plata and, as the coordinators of the meeting, Pamela and Álvaro Pagalday, said, to remember and to project ourselves forward as a family. —
Representatives of each branch told us about the rich and valuable experience of the history and beginnings of the Family Work of La Plata. Norma and Héctor Pavía together with Frank Carrera spoke for the League, Rita and Marcelo Moviglia for the Institute and Marisa Bulfón for the Federation.
Each one of them commented on their first steps in the Schoenstatt Movement, telling their anecdotes and memories, reaffirming in their testimonies that they were chosen and supported by the Blessed Mother to continue to persevere in the mission without, at times, understanding the reason for some things.
They told us about the accompaniment of the Schoenstatt Fathers Antonio Cosp, Guillermo Mario Cassone, Ángel Strada, Guillermo Carmona and Sisters Cristvera and Noemí…and many others who participated in the beginnings of the Family Work in the decade of 1960.
The first couples’ groups were remembered: Dilexit Eclessiam, Maternidad… and some later ones such as Alegría y Esperanza, Camino, and also the members of these pioneer groups in the founding of the Family Work of La Plata.
From marriage preparation
Norma and Héctor Pavía told us about their beginnings in Schoenstatt back in 1973 when Father Antonio Cosp prepared them for their marriage and then Father Guillermo Cassone consecrated them as a married couple. They were young priests in the VERBUM PATRIS course, the first course for Argentinean-Paraguayan priests. A few months later they were invited to a meeting that led to their extensive and fruitful work in the Platense movement. Then, Fran Carrera, besides relating his experience in the Family Work, shared with us a poem with a chacarera rhythm, composed by his remembered wife, Elizabeth, about the birth of the A.L.M. (Apostolic League of Members).
Would you like to be founders?
Rita and Marcelo Moviglia reminded us that they joined as youths in 1972 and that the following year their parents joined, committing themselves in such a special way for the conquest of the Shrine, that they attended the Masses that the bishop gave at 6:30 daily in the Shrine (which was still part of the archbishop’s property) as an offering for the opening of the Shrine to the entire community. The life of his family is intimately related to the life of Schoenstatt, since it works for the family. They emphasized that we have a challenging present, with a strong commitment to the world outside and that this is our time as a Family Work.
Marisa Bulfón, who along with her husband Marcelo, were among the first Schoenstatters from La Plata, told us about when she began in the movement in 1966/67 thanks to the intervention of Sister Noemí. There were so few people that Sister asked Marcelo if they wanted to be founders. The answer is known by all: not only were they co-participants in the founding of the movement in La Plata, but they had, and Marisa has at present, an innumerable apostolic task within and outside of Schoenstatt. They had the first Home Shrine in our city, called “Colonia del cielo”. For 25 years they were secretaries of the National Family Work, promoters of the Crown of the Family Work “foundation and crown”, and they were founders of the Federation of Families, among many of the activities developed.
Crown of clay refined in fire
The Crown of the Family Work is made of clay, like us. A clay refined in fire and in the struggle of our daily life, as spouses and parents, but with a love made noble by the marriage Covenants linked to Christ.
After the very good testimonies that made us go back in time, honor the past and value the present, we sang “Only love” that transforms the clay into a miracle. This is the Crown that represents the family work.
Finally, each one wrote on a banner the wonderful things received in the Family Work, united in a multicolored garland that was offered in the Holy Mass celebrated by Father Alberto Meroni, which we shared with our Covenant brothers of the Father’s Secretariat.
This history of the Family Work united as League, Institute and Federation continues…
Honoring the past, valuing the present and projecting the future.
Original: Spanish 2022-10-18. Translated by: María Aragón, Monterrey, México