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: ASSOCIATION OF MARY HELP OF CHRISTIANS
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| Monthly Message : September
us to pray for her intentions
We are seeing an increase of violence
and dehumanization in the world to such an extent that Pope Francis
did not hesitate to say that the third world war is already underway.
In these difficult times for the Church and for humanity, we look to
Mary Help of Christians who, since the beginning of history, has fought
against Satan to cooperate in the establishment of the Kingdom of God,
a Kingdom of peace and justice. Through prayer and conversion of heart
we must make sure that our hearts are open to God's will and that He
can work through each of us.
Mary's mission is to help ensure that goodness triumphs. Entrusting
ourselves to her and following her example as a believing woman and
mother in the faith, we learn to love her Son and all our brothers and
sisters, spreading love and mercy in a world where hatred and revenge
seem to prevail. For this reason it is important to intensify our prayer,
in groups and in families, for the conversion of hearts, and for peace
and reconciliation among peoples. In particular, every 24th of the month,
we spend time in Eucharistic adoration and pray the Holy Rosary for
this intention that Our Lady has entrusted to us with a mother's heart.
On 16 August we started the bicentenary of the birth of Don Bosco, a
time of grace that should awaken in our hearts the educative and apostolic
passion of our holy founder. Above all, we ask Don Bosco to obtain for
us the grace to live our vocation faithfully, without ambiguity and
mediocrity, as signs and bearers of God's love for young people and
for all. In addition we want to live at the school of Mary, with the
Help of Christians as our mother and teacher, with great docility to
the Holy Spirit. We thank God for the signs of His love pray that we
may be open to His will, trusting in Providence and freeing ourselves
from worldly attitudes and self-sufficiency.
As members of the Association of Mary Help of Christians we want to
live this Jubilee year in light of the Seventeenth International Congress
of Mary Help of Christians which will take place at Colle Don Bosco
near Turin from 6 to 9 August 2015. Fr Pascual Chavez, Rector Major
Emeritus, defined this event as an important spiritual event of the
jubilee year. We renew our commitment to the defence and promotion of
the family in harmony with the Church and the Salesian Family. "Hic
domus mea, inde glory mea" - "From the house of Mary to our
homes" This will be the theme of the programme of preparation for
the Congress, inviting all local groups to an intense spiritual experience,
a constant community prayer and the promotion of meaningful experiences
for the benefit of the family. In this way we will be helped every month
by a series of cards, prepared by Fr Roberto Carelli, a Salesian and
professor of theology at the Pontifical Salesian University at the Crocetta
Trusting in the presence and assistance of Mary Help of Christians and
St. Joseph, we salute you
Sig. Lucca Tullio,
President - Don Pierluigi Cameroni SDB, Spiritual Animator
mihi anima, cetera tolle
Congress of Mary Help of Christians
Torino-Valdocco / Colle Don Bosco - 6-9
mea, inde glory mea"
From the house of Mary to our homes
his mercy is from generation to generation
Fr Roberto Carelli
Many would like us to forget it, but having fathers and mothers is very
important: they tell us that our life was desired, welcomed, loved and
considered precious. Having a father and mother means belonging, having
an origin and a destination, enjoying a life that may be difficult but
is full of meaning, having an authority and an unconditional love that
is capable of sustaining us in life's greatest trials. Those who have
experienced it since childhood know very well the truth of this. Those
who for some reason or other have been painfully deprived of this experience
also know that it is true.
For us Christians, whatever our personal history, it is a source of
great joy and comfort to know that God is our Father and the Church
is our Mother. This is is a wonderful gift - no one is excluded and
no one is compelled to accept it. God is love. He does not want to impose
himself on us or to be forced on us, and in return for his love he wants
only to be loved by us.
We then of the Salesian Family have the joy of having another father
in heaven, and what a father, and what a great saint Don Bosco is! This
is no small thing. Not all families have the privilege of having a saint
with such a great heart as their spiritual father. And we also have
a Mother in heaven, and what a Mother, the Help of Christians, Mother
of God and Mother of the Church! In the eyes of God, she is the most
beautiful of creatures and the highest collaborator in his works. To
her we owe the holiness of Don Bosco, because God entrusted him to her.
She guided him in life, she is at the origin of all his work.
Our formation programme for this year is geared completely towards the
Marian Congress which will be held in Turin at the end of the year,
the Bicentenary Year of the Birth of Don Bosco. We are resolved to honour
Don Bosco by paying special attention to Mary who was his Mother and
Teacher. She started him off and led him along on the road of faith
through all his trials. He honoured her as the Immaculate Help of Christians,
the most beautiful reflection of God's love and the holiest member of
the Church, undoubtedly the happiest of all creatures with the infinite
happiness of God, and the most fruitful with his superabundant fruitfulness.
The occasion of the bicentenary should first of all arouse in us a great
gratitude. What an honour it is to have Don Bosco as father and Mary
as our mother and help! And secondly, it should lead us to prayer and
mission. We pray: Don Bosco, dear father, obtain for us the gift of
knowing that you are our father, teacher and friend. Help us us to love
Mary Immaculate Help of Christians, as you yourself loved her, as Mother
and Teacher. Teach us to have full and filial confidence in her, who
guides us on our journey and supports us in our trials.
The theme of the year is very clear from the title. It has three defining
aspects: the temple of Mary, our homes, and the coming together of the
generations . The worship of God, love of family and commitment to education
converge in a single objective: to increase our love and strengthen
the bonds that unite us in the Church, in the Salesian Family and the
human family. Neither is it a small thing that the Synod on the family
is taking place this year and that we are celebrating the year dedicated
to consecrated life. It allows us to honour Don Bosco in unity with
the whole Church.
Our task will be especially to follow up the desire expressed by Fr
Viganò, the seventh successor of Don Bosco. Referring to the
inscription on the Basilica Hic domus mea, mea inde gloria mea, he called
for a theology of the temple that would help us to understand the richness
of Grace and the many graces that come from the temple, and go out from
there to the people of God all over the world for the the salvation
of countless legions of poor and abandoned youth.
Our formation programme includes a series of ten catechetical lessons,
each of which explores an aspect of the multi-faceted mystery of Mary's
House, in relation to our homes, our families, our children and their
education. From time to time it will offer three practical proposals
to help us to imitate Mary in her Fiat (faith), in her Stabat (the cross)
and in her Magnificat (joy). These are inspired by the tenets of the
Preventive System: reason will call us to the dialogue that is so necessary
in our families; religion is an invitation to live and work constantly
in the presence of God in the small and big things in life; loving kindness
will make us work on practical ways of loving in accordance with the
heart of God.
1 The house of Mary and the dialogue
We start our journey of formation with a general consideration that
brings us right to the heart of things and guides our personal life
as well as the life of our families and communities. When we look closer,
we see that there is a deep similarity between the heart of God, the
body of Mary and the walls of the temple. All three are "home",
the place where we live and work, the place from which we set out and
to which we return. Here is the mystery of God, Trinitarian love and
Creator of the world, who welcomes us to life and sets us apart from
himself to bring us into communion with himself. It is the mystery of
every mother, who brings us into the world in her womb. It is the mystery
of the Temple in which we experience the presence of God so that we
can radiate his glory. And in a supreme way it is the mystery of Mary
who at the Incarnation became really the house of God, the Ark of the
Covenant, the first tabernacle in history. In her the Son of God found
a home in the world to become the Redeemer of the world.
Here then is the real meaning of home as the fundamental law of love,
which is always a communion of persons who are distinct. True love always
demands respect and affection, the right level of closeness and distance,
a balance between the instinct for attachment and the need for detachment,
the ability to have and to renounce, the desire to create bonds between
people and at the same time being careful to respect their freedom.
In this sense, what threatens love is not only the absence of love,
but also the excess of love when, even with the best intentions, the
bonds of love can stifle freedom instead of opening it to new relationships.
When the breath of freedom is missing, love no longer means belonging
but possessing, and when there is no affection, freedom loses the guiding
force of love and remains disoriented and meaningless. On the contrary,
maturing in love means being able to stay at home and also knowing how
to go out from it. It means overcoming the temptation to close in on
oneself and having the courage to open up, avoiding the double risk
of regressing into our many fears or accumulating experiences without
We contemplate the experience of Jesus, who is the revelation of Love
incarnate. By the sacrifice of his own life and in his detachment from
his disciples Jesus showed a greater love and a life that overcomes
death. We look to Mary, who extends her motherhood to all of us, from
her Fiat at the Annunciation to her Stabat at the Cross. In the joyous
birth at Bethlehem, the Word was made flesh in her when he became her
Son. On Golgotha the Word was crucified. She experienced the agony of
losing her Son and she was given to us as our mother. Finally we look
to Don Bosco: he was greatly loved by his mother, Mamma Margaret, and
yet she sent him to work away from home at a very young age. He had
no father, was misunderstood by his brother Antonio, and deprived of
affection and support by the death of Don Calosso. He summarized his
understanding of love in the well known dictum: "Love is not enough.
The young must know they are loved." Education is not only a matter
of instruction and protection. It also means being recognised and encouraged,
having a home and a family, belonging to a community, receiving life,
learning to live and to set forth into life.
This then in summary is the rule of the home: having a home means receiving
life and learning to live, looking forward to building a new home and
generating new life. Here we see at least three pointers for the dialogue
of love with God, family and community.
1 God is neither an unattainable goal
nor a comfortable refuge. In Jesus, God gave his life for us poor creatures
and he wants us to give our lives for others, especially the poorest.
Two things are clear to the believer: the primacy of grace and the exercise
of freedom. This means that you cannot believe in the God of life and
give up living: to have faith means putting your trust in God and then
courageously deciding for yourself. Here the Gospel is clear: "Not
everyone who says to me, 'Lord, Lord,' will enter the kingdom of heaven,
but only the one who does the will of my Father." It is not enough
to know the truth: 'He who does the truth comes to the light.' And then
it goes on: 'For everyone who has will be given more, and he will have
an abundance. Whoever does not have, even what he has will be taken
from him.' Then we ask ourselves: "how is my prayer, my dialogue
with God? Am I able to put my trust in Him humbly and to live my life
courageously for the sake of others? Do I know how to be recollected
in heart and at the same time to make use of my talents, to abandon
myself to God and commit myself in service of others?"
2 In the relationship between the generations,
the essential thing today is to trust young people and to demand responsibility
from them. We must not be negative in their regard or over-protective.
We have to give convincing witness of adults who love life, and are
able to generate new relationships of friendship, new ways of working
and new forms of solidarity. We cannot ignore young people or treat
them as unimportant. There can be no true dialogue without giving recognition
to young people and helping them to grow in their sense of identity.
3 Finally, in community relations, the
law of the Temple where we receive the love of God to be radiated to
others, demands that we do not separate communion and mission. Christian
identity cannot be separated from dedication to the world. Pope Francis
says this authoritatively and passionately in his beautiful apostolic
letter on the joy of the Gospel. The Church, at all levels, spiritual
and organizational, must never lose its missionary identity and goal.
We can listen to it in the Pope's own beautiful words: The Church's
closeness to Jesus is part of a common journey; "communion and
mission are profoundly interconnected
The renewal of structures
demanded by pastoral conversion can only be understood in this light:
as part of an effort to make them more mission-oriented
aim of these participatory processes should not be ecclesiastical organization
but rather the missionary aspiration of reaching everyone."(Gaudium
SEVENTH INTERNATIONAL CONGRESS OF MARY HELP OF CHRISTIANS
(Turin - Colle Don Bosco 6-9 August 2015)
1 The Seventh International Congress of Mary Help of Christians will
take place at Colle Don Bosco in Turin from 6 to 9 August 2015.
2 We are drawing up the official programme and logistical arrangements
which will be made official in October 2014.
3 ADMA will manage the organization of the Congress (programme - lunch
and dinner on the days of the Congress: from dinner on Thursday 6 to
Sunday 9 August with the exception of dinner on Saturday evening).
4 Each group will make its own arrangements for accommodation and travel.
5 Enrolment will begin in January / February 2015.
6 We invite you to accompany the work of preparation for the Congress
in your prayer.
ADMA PRIMARY - FAMILY RETREAT
"Set out on the journey with the joy of the gospel" This was
the theme of the formation during the Retreat for ADMA couples and families,
held in two sessions from 3 to 15 August 2014. More than 60 families
participated in the charming alpine environment of Pracharbon (Valle
d'Aosta). The retreat led by Fr Pierluigi Cameroni developed some of
the themes of Pope Francis' exhortation Evangelii Gaudium: 1 The joy
of the gospel. 2. Gospel discernment 3 Mary, Mother of evangelization
4 Community conversion 5 An outgoing Church (cf audio www.admadonbosco.org).
In our day Mary has renewed the sense of belonging and commitment of
many families and ADMA has launched all participants on the journey
in preparation for the Seventh International Congress of Mary Help of
Christians. Fr Roberto Carelli, Mr Tullio Lucca, president of ADMA,
and some couples coordinated the event which saw the participation of
over 350 people. It was an experience of the beauty of faith and the
joy of growing together under the motherly gaze of the Help of Christians.
The two weeks were also a time of great grace for young ADMA. Several
young people, under the guidance of Sergio and Cecilia Durighello, David
and Clare Ricauda, Walter and Marianne Gambarotto, and sister Marilena,
FMA, were engaged in the animation of adolescents and younger children.
Together they drew up a formation programme focused on the story of
Don Bosco, culminating in the final evening with a programme of song
and dance for the entertainment of the parents,
OPENING OF THE BICENTENARY YEAR
Our Association was well represented at the celebration at Colle Don
Bosco on 16 August for the official opening of the bicentenary of the
birth of Don Bosco. As well as Mr Tullio Lucca and Fr Pierluigi Cameroni,
there were several families from ADMA Primary. The Rector Major, Fr
Ángel Fernández Artime, emphasized that the year we are
going to celebrate will be a real jubilee for the whole Salesian Family
and all those people who are inspired by the witness of the Saint from
Castelnuovo. Only in this way will we find the necessary renewal capable
of inspiring activities that will be really fruitful in hope and peace.
The highlight was of course the Mass which saw the Basilica at Colle
Don Bosco filled with young people and the general faithful.
Lombardy-Veneto - ADMA FAMILY RETREAT
A retreat for families of Lombardy and Triveneto took place for the
first time from 20 to 24 August in Albaré (Verona) at the Da
mihi animas cetera tolle Centre of the Shalom community, founded by
Sister Rosalina Ravasio. All the participants had the sense that they
were following God's plan and responding with generosity and loyalty.
This experience of grace was favoured by the beauty of the place, and
by the and service of the young people of the Shalom community. The
theme "Setting out with the joy of the gospel" was accepted
in a spirit of fraternity and internalized through fervent prayer with
times of listening, meditation, Eucharistic adoration, sharing in groups
and in couples. Fifteen families shared this experience of grace and
renewal with Fr Pierluigi Cameroni and Mr Tullio Lucca.
Fr Pierluigi Cameroni met the ADMA group in Bangkok on Sunday 20 June
2014. The group was started a few years ago and has about 50 members.
It has been well guided by Fr Peter Nopphadol, Provincial Delegate for
Youth Ministry. At the meeting, the life and activity of ADMA were presented
in powerpoint , which also emphasized the desire to start ADMA in the
various Salesian works in the country. They are also planning to participate
in the Congress of Mary Help of Christians in Turin.
ECUADOR - Ninth NATIONAL CONGRESS
The Ninth ADMA National Congress in Ecuador ADMA was held from 25 to
27 July in Cuenca, at the St. Dominic of Guzman Retreat House, with
delegations from the following local centres: Quito, Machala, Cuenca,
Manta, Guayaquil, Salinas, Chavezpamba, Sevilla de Oro, Cariamanga,
Julio Andrade. The theme of the conference was that of Salesian spirituality
in line with the Rector Major's strenna. It was introduced and developed
by two talented speakers: Fr Raúl Conza who spoke about Marian
Spirituality in Latin America, and Fr Luis Ricchiardi on the topic Marian
Titles in the life of Don Bosco. In the evening there was a procession
with the recital of the Rosary, followed by a typical entertainment
with dance and other artistic and cultural items. The following day
began with a procession through the streets of the city of Cuenca to
the Chapel of Mary Help of Christians where the participants shared
in the Eucharist presided over by Archbishop Luis Cabrera of Cuenca.
During the Congress the new National Council for the years 2014-2018
was elected. It consists of Cecilia Melgar from the Dominic Savio Centre
of Guayaquil, President; Jeaneth Barahona, from Quito, Vice-president;
Rosita Mora from Machala (ADMA National Reporter, Jeaneth Barahona).
CORRIENTES (ARGENTINA) YOUTH ADMA
"We have various initiatives to spread devotion to Mary Help of
Christians. We visit isolated places to help the people most in need.
We share moments of prayer, celebration and meditation, in the spirit
of Mary visiting her cousin Elizabeth." (Javier Meza).
The Councillor for the Salesian Missions, Fr Guillermo Basañes,
met the ADMA group which consists of ten members. After a moment of
adoration he spoke about the importance of knowing, studying and loving
Mary. The members meet every 24th of the month for adoration of the
Blessed Sacrament and prayer to Our Lady.
Rasa Lospalos (East Timor) Here there
is a thriving ADMA group
We are asked to pray with a sense of
gratitude for Fr Guy Ollivry, aged 88, who died on 30.07.2014 in Libreville
(Gabon). For several years he assisted with the French translation of
the ADMA newsletter.
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ADMA HEADQUARTERS, Torino-Valdocco,
ADMA | Santuario Maria Ausiliatrice | Via Maria
Ausiliatrice 32 | 10152 TORINO-VALDOCCO | ITALIA
Tel.: 0039-011-5224216 / Fax.: 0039-011-52224213
THE President OF ADMA: Signor Tullio LUCCA |E-mail: Tullio.Lucca@gmail.com
Spiritual Animator of ADMA:
Don Pier Luigi CAMERONI /Casa Generalizia
SDB - Via della Pisana 1111 - ROMA
Cell 3401452349 | E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
Websites: www.donbosco-torino.it |
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