CHILE, by Guillermo Plaza Liberón •
During his youth, Mario Hiriart spent many vacations at the San Carlos of Valle del Elqui estate, and the next nearest settlement was the El Tambo homestead. His diary describes his attachment with the people and the place.
Twenty years ago at the end of the village atop a small hill, which dominates its surroundings, a small wayside shrine in the shape of the Shrine with the Mother Thrice Admirable’s picture was erected and dedicated to Mario. There is a tradition on the Sunday closest to the anniversary of Mario’s death of going on pilgrimage. In the village square that faces the little church, we had a potluck lunch. Then we entered the church, where we shared memories about Mario with the local people, who welcomed us very affectionately. Then we began the pilgrimage on the village’s only street, praying the rosary, and reading short passages of Mario’s thoughts between each mystery. The 700 m. climb up the hill to the wayside shrine began at the end of the street; it is usually a very windy place. We finished the rosary just as we reached the top; we “flew” with wind and had a spectacular view. After prayers, petitions, and consecration, we once again returned to the square and from there to our homes. On this occasion, our adviser, Fr. Patricio Ilabaca, accompanied us, which rarely happens.
The previous Saturday, members of the Tabor de Peñuelas Family member`s circle arrived at the Wayside Shrine to repaint it and clean the surrounding area, so we found it in optimum condition.