COSTA RICA, Jose A. Martínez and Anelena Hueda •
Last Sunday, April 28, 2019, the Third Workshop for engaged couples was celebrated in the Family of Hope Shrine in San José, Costa Rica. The workshop took place on a beautiful and sunny afternoon of summer-like day, where the graces the MTA gives were truly felt and received by thirty couples that were present.—
The activity revolved around the theme “In Love, take risks, even if you make mistakes”, inspired by Pope Francis’ recently released Post-Synodal Apostolic Exhortation to Young People “Christus Vivit.” It was an afternoon full of pauses one by one in the shadow of the Shrine that urged these young couples to dialogue and deepen their relationships, to work in mutual commitments and for joint purposes.
In addition, Father José Luis Correa gave a talk, where the call to live happy courtships strengthened in faith, resonated loud and clear.
Additionally a young couple, Beto and Gaby, shared their testimony about the meaning and the importance of participation in one of the Bridal Groups has had for them and their courtship, inviting those that are not daring to be daring, and have the opportunity to integrate into one of these groups where they are accompanied by young couples that guide them with a formation program full of Catholic values and the pedagogy of Father Joseph Kentenich.
Working with texts from Christus Vivit
José Luis and couples that make up the Commission for Pastoral Care of the Bride and Groom shared about the desire of creating an atmosphere of reflection and debate between what the Church proposes to us and what the world offers to us.
It turned out to be a really productive exercise for them, and they enjoyed it very much in it enabled them to share experiences and ideas they expressed in conclusions they later shared with the rest of the forum.
They worked in such harmony and so full of the Holy Spirit’s graces that their enthusiasm overwhelmed the atmosphere, so even at the end of the day, one of these teams, on its own initiative, encouraged itself to jointly express to the Pastoral Ministry its desire to begin a new Couple’s Group made up of the couples from this team (a request that was no doubt accepted).
Participating in the first Sunday Youth Mass
It was a truly blessed afternoon, where the attitude of taking risks and “risking it” for Christ the Pope promotes and urges young people to live, and that so much evokes our Father and Founder with his call to be “daring in the risk”, was clearly palpable.
When the day came to an end, the workshop ended with a final offering, where each couple took their specific purpose to the Shrine to give it to the MTA in the capital of grace jar, and the subsequent blessing of Father José Luis. Minutes later the first Sunday Youth Mass would be celebrated in our beloved Shrine, where these couples were invited to join in a special way and in which they actively participated.
Feeling very strongly that we are not alone on this different path
Below we share a brief testimonial review given to us by Jose and Vale, one of the participating couples:
“The afternoon we had was a gift from God and the Blessed Mother, from the other couples and Father José Luis, who donated their time to generate a space for formation, a time to reflect and to grow together as a couple. We also enjoyed a dynamic group of couples, where we laughed a lot and met new friends with whom we discovered we have a lot in common. Sometimes it is a burden to feel like a “minority” on the way to having a God-centered courtship. But that day, we felt empathy in the common struggles (social pressures, paralyzing fears, caring for fidelity, and purity in a world that doesn’t always do it), and thus felt very vividly that we are not alone on this different path. They left us with the desire to continue growing, they gave us a push on the road, and the strength to continue fulfilling God’s wise plans.
Original: Spanish. Translation: Maria Fisher, Germany – Edited: Melissa Peña-Janknegt, Elgin, TX USA