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: ASSOCIATION OF MARY HELP OF CHRISTIANS
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Monthly Message : 24th june 2016
invites us to persevere in prayer
Through ADMA Our Lady wants to show that
she is present and that wherever she is there is joy and gratitude in
the heart. Our journey of faith and prayer with Mary makes us strong
and lets us taste the joy of life in the Holy Spirit. It's good to see
how many members experience the presence of Our Lady in different meetings,
pilgrimages, at times of prayer and in daily life. They live happy lives
with songs of joy, jubilation and thanksgiving. To live every day with
Mary is to experience the joy of the gospel and to enjoy life as a surprise,
something amazing. This is a grace to be accepted and one that bears
fruit. We are grateful for Mary's presence in our lives, in our Association,
and in the life of the Church and of humanity of our time. Our Lady's
presence transforms us. It enriches our lives and fills us with joy.
With Our Lady we feel the presence of the Lord and live in the grace
Mary is with us because we are going through a difficult stage in history.
Too many people live as if God did not exist. Too many political, economic
and cultural visions make plans and act without any reference to God
and to His law. The Bible says: "Cursed is the man who puts his
trust in man." Unfortunately we often trust in man and not in God.
True happiness, however, comes from observing the commandments of God
and doing his will, because without God we have neither a future nor
Our Lady is achieving the triumph of her Immaculate Heart, as she said
at Fatima, also through us who have said "yes" to holiness,
"yes" to living her messages, "yes" to living the
commandments of God, and "yes" to living and rejoicing in
the law of God. We are poor instruments, but when the Lord takes us
he transforms us. We are at peace as long as Mary is with us and guiding
us. She is our hope. She is the star that leads us towards her Son Jesus.
We entrust all our past to her and allow ourselves to be guided by her.
We dedicate ourselves to her Immaculate Heart and try to be like her.
Let us persevere as individuals, as families and as groups in the simple
and powerful prayer of the Rosary, in the practice of popular piety
and in active and conscious participation in the Church's liturgy. May
Mary the Immaculate Help of Christians bless us with her motherly blessing
of peace and love
Tullio, President / Fr Pierluigi Cameroni SDB, Spiritual Animator
Mary and like Mary
Regenerated in His Mercy
10. CALLED TO REMAIN IN GOD'S MERCY
Through circumstances the final catechesis
by Sister Linda Pocher, FMA, on the theme of Mercy was not published
in June. We apologize and now gladly provide this final meditation.
We renew our thanks to Sister Linda for her availability and for the
rich contribution she has given us with these meditations which we ask
you to value.
The heart of Jesus is the heart of mercy
According to Pope Francis, the Jubilee
year not just one pastoral initiative among others, easily done and
soon forgotten. Rather it is the beginning of a "new time",
set to continue until the style of mercy, which is the quality mark
of Christian life, has permeated the Church and the whole world. The
Pope says, "How much I desire that the year to come will be steeped
in mercy, so that we can go out to every man and woman, bringing the
goodness and tenderness of God! May the balm of mercy reach everyone,
both believers and those far away, as a sign that the Kingdom of God
is already present in our midst! " (MV 5). Precisely for this reason,
at the end of the formative process of this year, we want to go once
again to the source from which we receive the mercy of God, which is
the heart of Jesus. On the cross his heart was opened irrevocably by
the spear. St John, who was present with Mary at the foot of the cross,
said he saw blood and water flowing from the side of Jesus (Jn 19:34;
1 Jn 5.6 to 8). Blood and water represent the sacraments of Baptism
and the Eucharist, through which the riches of God's mercy are poured
on us. Celebrating the sacraments, in fact, we receive the life of Jesus,
we are truly forgiven, and we are reconciled with God and with one another.
In his encyclical on love, Benedict XVI writes that it is only by contemplating
the pierced side of Christ that we can understand fully the first words
of the encyclical "God is love" (1 Jn 4,8). "His death
on the Cross is the culmination of that turning of God against himself
in which he gives himself in order to raise man up and save him. This
is love in its most radical form." Jesus gave this act of oblation
an enduring presence through his institution of the Eucharist at the
Last Supper. He anticipated his death and resurrection by giving his
disciples, in the bread and wine, his very self. In this way Jesus ensured
that when we participate in the Eucharist, "we enter into the dynamic
of his self-giving". In this way we become one with Him, and become
able to love others as He loves, since "Union with Christ is also
union with all those to whom he gives himself. I cannot possess Christ
just for myself; I can belong to him only in union with all those who
have become, or who will become, his own." Thanks to the Eucharist,
Jesus makes it possible for us to practise the commandment of love.
Now love can be "commanded" because it has first been given.
(Deus Caritas Est 12-14). That is why Jesus, just before "commanding"
mutual love, or the practical exercise of mercy, invites the disciples
to "abide in his love" (Jn 15.9).
He goes this invitation to you today: "Remain in my love!"
Jesus says to you. "You have been regenerated by my mercy, you
have been healed, freed, forgiven ... do not distance yourself ever
from me! My Spirit will always be with you and your life will be rich
in fruits of joy and love. You will be increasingly able to ask forgiveness,
to give thanks and to love. Through you my mercy will reach those who
are still far from me. If you let me love you every day, in every circumstance
sad or happy in your life, there will be more love in the world and
the world will become more human and more just. Do not stay away from
me! As the Father has loved me, I also love you, stay in this love.
I ask myself: Do I participate in the Eucharist? What do I do to stay
in the love of Jesus?
The priest is the love of the heart of
The saintly Curé of Ars was humble
and aware of the seriousness of the mission that had been entrusted
to him by God. He said, "if we were to remove the sacrament of
Holy Orders, we would not have the Lord. Who put him there in that tabernacle?
The priest. Who welcomed your soul at the beginning of your life? The
priest. Who feeds your soul and gives it strength for its journey? The
priest. Who will prepare it to appear before God, bathing it one last
time in the blood of Jesus Christ? The priest, always the priest. And
if this soul should happen to die through sin, who will raise it up,
who will restore its calm and peace? Again, the priest ... After God,
the priest is everything! ... He himself will fully understand that
only in heaven." Don Bosco also was convinced that "the priest
does not go to heaven alone, nor does he go to hell alone. If he does
good he will go to heaven with the souls he saved by his good example.
If he does evil and if he gives scandal, he will go to perdition with
the souls damned by his scandal." Driven by this conviction, in
the course of his life he devoted great effort to helping seminarians
and priests to live their vocation fully.
In this Holy Year, Pope Francis is asking a lot of priests. He wants
them to be truly shepherds, like Jesus the Good Shepherd, to be present
in the flock with the style of Jesus. He wants them to have great interior
righteousness in search of the Father's will and the good of others;
not to be afraid to mingle with sinners, to touch the sick, to take
upon themselves the sufferings and miseries of the poor. He wants them
to be both frank and gentle in proclaiming the truth of the Gospel;
to show discernment and attention to the situation of each one so that
people are not burdened with an impossible load they cannot carry. For
priests to be holy is first of all the wish of Jesus who has promised
to be present in a special way through the person of the priest, especially
when he celebrates the sacraments, but also when he listens, comforts,
and advises. The more the priest is ready to die for his flock, as Jesus
did, the more Jesus can make his ministry fruitful.
The priest, however, remains a man, and a sinner. One that, like all
other men, needs to be continuously forgiven, consoled and confirmed
in the faith. The priest is one to whom Jesus today repeats what he
said to Peter at the Last Supper, " behold, Satan demanded to have
you, that he might sift you like wheat, but I have prayed for you that
your faith may not fail; and when you have turned again, strengthen
your brethren." (Lk 22.31 to 32). In fact the priest also must
confess often, must pray every day, and allow himself to be taught every
day by the Word and the Spirit. He must take steps to make room for
the Father's will and be always ready to perform the works of mercy
which the Lord sends his way. In short, the ministry he has received
is a "treasure in earthen vessels, to show that the transcendent
power belongs to God" and not to men (2 Cor 4,7). Only if he remains
in the Father, the Son and the Spirit, can the priest help others to
enter into that love.
The fact that Jesus has reserved the priestly ministry to only some
among Christians, should not make others indifferent or passive. In
the body of Christ which is the Church, every member is responsible
for the health of others, everyone is called to rejoice with those who
rejoice, and to suffer with those who mourn, and to bear "the burdens
of one another" ( Gal 6,2). We are all responsible for the holiness
of priests and we can support them, very concretely, through a few simple
steps: First, we can pray each day for priestly vocations and for the
sanctification of priests. Secondly, we must try always to speak well
of priests and, when this is not really possible, Don Bosco suggests
that it is better to remain silent (in the case of very serious crimes,
it is right to speak, but only with the competent authority. How can
spreading news of the sins of others, help the Church?) Finally, it
is good to treat the priests as we would treat Jesus, to ask for their
help and offer them our cooperation as we would do with Jesus. We should
be careful to avoid "using" the priest for our own purposes.
These small precautions, if practised with love, are veritable works
I ask myself: what do I think of priests and how do I speak about them?
How do I behave towards them?
If you are my devoted sons and daughters,
I will be a loving mother for you.
"If you abide in me and my words abide in you, ask whatever you
wish, and it shall be done for you." (Jn 15.7). With this solemn
promise, Jesus seals his covenant of love with us. And if we look at
the lives of the saints, who remained in Him and put his words into
practice, we see that Jesus always keeps this promise. In the famous
dream of the two columns, Our Lady turns to Don Bosco and the young
people with a similar saying: "If you are my devoted children,
I will be a loving mother for you." Mary reiterates also that each
gift of love is rightly repaid only with love, or with full trust, obedience,
and the unconditional gift of self. The more we enter into this way
of thinking, the more we are transformed into a source through which
the mercy of God can pass and permeate relations and the situations
in which we find ourselves (John 4:14; 7:38).
Blessed Eusebia Palomino FMA is a shining example of this truth. She
was born and raised in a poor family. Her parents recognized in everything
the tender touch of the love of God and they cultivated in her the desire
to give herself totally to Him, with nothing held back and no half measures.
After her religious profession in 1924, she was sent to Valverde del
Camino in Spain, where she worked in the kitchen, the garden and the
laundry, and did a little work in the oratory. Sister Eusebia was not
particularly good-looking or cultured, but everyone who met her found
in her a very deep knowledge of the things of God and a remarkable spiritual
discernment. The girls never grew tired of listening to her. She spoke
to them of Jesus Crucified, the Blessed Virgin, the missions and Paradise.
Priests and seminarians from neighbouring towns came to seek her advice.
Furthermore, one after the other, surprising episodes - big and small
- began to occur. The things Sister Eusebia asked for in prayer were
granted. "Once, with precise details and information, she was able
to bring peace and calm to a mother whose son was in the war in Morocco.
On another occasion she made water flow from a dry well. Another day,
"she did not allow" it to rain on a poor house under construction,
so that the owner would not be hurt. Another time, she found eggs in
the henhouse when the other Sisters, a moment before, had found none.
These and other extraordinary events, however, did not take away from
her simplicity. Sister Eusebia imitated the littleness Mary sang about
in the Magnificat. Antonia Colombo wrote: "She lived this way naturally.
She was like a brush that you hold in your hands because she was totally
She was far from any complex of inferiority or timidity." Among
the sisters and among the people she was always ready to promote communion.
She did not speak except to praise and to thank, even though this meant
sacrifice and self-denial on account of her temperament because by nature
she was demanding and uncompromising. She found strength in the Eucharist
and the Virgin Mary, and never tired of propagating devotion. She wrote
hundreds of letters and took every opportunity, in and out of season,
to promote among priests and people the practice of "consecration"
to the Virgin Mary. She entrusted her whole life into the hands of Mary.
In her eyes this was the best way to live the commitments of Baptism,
and to stay really in the love of Jesus.
Living and spreading true devotion to Mary Help of Christians is a fundamental
task of ADMA. I ask myself: to what extent does this concern pervade
and guide my daily choices and my lifestyle?
Zitacuaro (MEXICO) - NEW ADMA GROUP
A small ADMA group has started in Collegio Lumena in the city of Zitácuaro,
Michoacán The directress Sister Gabriela Murgia and Sister Ana
María Martínez, local animator of ADMA, enthusiastically
revived this devotion among pupils in the primary and secondary schools
(Sister Leticia Navarrete Macías, ADMA Provincial Animator -
BENIN - NATIONAL PILGRIMAGE - "ADMA: LOVE MARIA"
On 7 and 8 May 2016 the ADMA of Benin led by Frs Jean Lemondo and Raphaël
Coulibaly went on pilgrimage to the National Shrine of Allada. The 97
pilgrims came from Parakou, Zogbo, Menotin, St Michel Ouando, Magone
Centre in Tokpota and the St Francis Xavier Centre. After the pilgrims
were welcomed, the secretary of each delegation presented a report on
activities carried out. Overall there is a multitude of tasks with great
initiatives to revive devotion to Mary Help of Christians. The evening
ended with a candle-lit procession with the statue of Mary Help of Christians
and a meditation on the Joyful Mysteries. To finish this first day,
we had a penitential celebration followed by Eucharistic Adoration with
the possibility of going to confession until midnight..
The next day we found ourselves at the Holy Door of the Jubilee of Mercy.
After the explanation of the rite we made the transition through this
Holy Door as requested by Pope Francis.
After Mass, we met to hear the theme of the Strenna of the Rector Major
for 2016: "With Jesus, we journey together in an adventure of the
Spirit," presented by Fr Raffaele. This was followed by an exchange
around the following questions:
1- What is our vision and our approach to young people today?
2- As ADMA, how can we be Don Bosco today?
It was a good chance to meet the different members and to share knowledge
and above all prayer. We made new friends and shared initiatives.
KOREA - FIRST ADMA GROUP
24 May 2016: a memorable day for 13 new members of ADMA in Korea!
For years they had been studying how to start ADMA in Korea. This goal
has now been achieved thanks to the determination and courage of Sister
Susanna Lee, FMA, after over a year of preparation through simple courses
of Mariology at the "School of Mary". It involved a meeting
every week with the recitation of the Holy Rosary, Holy Mass, two formative
classes and a social time.
In the "Mother of Listening" house of the Daughters of Mary
Help of Christians in Gwangju (Korea), 13 candidates, spent the eve
of the feast of Mary Help of Christians on a spiritual retreat. Following
the guidelines given by the Spiritual Animator of ADMA, Fr Pierluigi
Cameroni, the ADMA Rules were presented. The Salesian Rector, Fr John
Bosco Park Hae Sung, gave a conference on the theme: "Mary, Don
Bosco's Madonna", which finished late in the evening with sacramental
On 24 May a festive atmosphere filled the house from morning. Among
those present were the Provincial, Sister Choi Silvia, on a visit to
the community, the Sisters of the community, the novices of the nearby
novitiate and, from Seoul, Sister Susanna Lee and Sister Adriana Bricchi.
Everything was well prepared, well carried out, and done with love and
commitment. At the Mass, after the reading of the Gospel passage on
"The Wedding at Cana", a wonderful choreography showed the
maternal intercession of Mary which led to Jesus' first miracle. The
participants were enthused by art and devotion and, at the end of the
Mass, the artists themselves said that they were honoured and happy
to work in an atmosphere saturated with spirituality. Then arranged
in a semicircle in front of the altar, the 13 candidates, with obvious
fervour, personally presented their membership commitment. The Salesian
Rector and the FMA Provincial then give each new member an ADMA badge,
the book of the Regulations and their personal membership card.
The 13 new members of ADMA are: KO Jung Ran Elisabetta; KIM Seong Ja
Lucia; KIM Yong Ja Michela; KIM Hyo Jeng Beatrice; PARK So Eun Maria
Gemma; PARK Hyun Ok Maria Teresa; BAI Won Ju Isabella; YUM Jung Sook
Elizabeth; LEE Jae Suk Cecilia; JANG Soon Hee Gabriella; CHO In Deok
Stella; CHOI Myung Hee Regina; and CHOI Jung Sook Bibiana
The souvenir photo expresses the desire of all to honour Mary Help of
Christians as Mother and Teacher of Christian life. It is a seed that
is now laid in the land of Korea that, with the help of Mary Help of
Christians, will grow into a big tree.
Yes, the chain will continue. Already there are other former students
attending the "School of Mary", waiting to confirm their membership
at the next opportunity. The Help of Christians has certainly gladdened
the hearts of her 13 devotees, who have decided to love her as Don Bosco
taught by starting a new presence of the Salesian Family in the dear
nation of Korea,
MALTA - ADMA PILGRIMAGE
After two previous successful pilgrimage-tours organized by the ADMA
group of St Patrick's Salesian House in Sliema, another one was organized
in June to the Marian Shrine of Ta 'Pinu in the island of Gozo. Fifty
people accepted the invitation and the initiative proved to be very
welcome! The good weather, the joy of being together and the shared
meal are all factors that made our pilgrimage a memorable event. At
the centre was the celebration of Mass at the shrine. We were welcomed
by Fr Dominic Sultana who presented the history of the shrine. (Fr Joe
PRIMARY ADMA - PILGRIMAGE TO MORNESE
With great joy the members of the Primary group shared a day at Mornese
on Sunday 26 June to visit the places where St Mary Domenica Mazzarello
was born and lived, and to celebrate the Year of Mercy in the shrine
dedicated to the saint and chosen by the bishop of the diocese of Acqui
Terme as a place of Jubilee.
The beautiful day, the presence of children, adults and elderly, the
expert and fraternal guidance of Sister Luigina Silvestrin, and the
hospitality of the Daughters of Mary Help of Christians all combined
to give a day full of Salesian spirituality and fraternity.
The central moment was the Mass celebrated after passing through the
Holy Door, and receiving the Jubilee indulgence.
IN MEMORY OF NERINA PETITTO, PROVINCIAL
SECRETARY OF ADMA IN SICILY
On 8 June 2016 the Lord called home Nerina Petitto, provincial secretary
of ADMA in Sicily. The whole Association remembers her with affection
and gratitude for the testimony with which she lived as a devotee of
Mary Help of Christians and her dedicated service of the Association
with humility, generosity and joyful availability.
Here is the message sent by the Provincial of Sicily, Fr Joseph Ruta,
on the occasion of the funeral: "I join with all members of the
Salesian Family of Sicily in invoking from the Lord eternal rest and
from the Virgin Help of Christians her embrace and that of the Salesians
saints and blessed. The legacy Nerina leaves us is one of joyful willingness
to serve and unconditional affection for Mary Help of Christians and
I hope nobody will be disappointed if we put Nerina together with President
Luigina Ciaramella (who died last year) and all those who are dear to
us by blood, by faith, and through our sharing of the one Salesian charism.
Our roots are not on this earth but in heaven. From there we draw energy
continuously and strength to move forward in life, in the joyful and
faithful fulfilment of the mission that each one has received from God.
It is our task to take on the spiritual heritage of so many brothers
and sisters who have gone before us as witnesses of the Risen Lord and
to walk in their footsteps without hesitation."
That our schools and universities in Latin America and the Caribbean
may become increasingly centres that radiate the Gospel.
Testimony of Salesian holiness
We remember Venerable Simon Srugi (1877-1943), Salesian Brother, on
whose grave is written: "A fellow Citizen of Christ, he saw him
everywhere. He gave himself to all and in all In order to copy in himself
the meek and humble figure of the Good Samaritan." In his notebook
we read: "The works of the religious, however small and simple
they may be, are valuable and acceptable to God when they are done to
And again: "Loving God means not giving him the slightest displeasure
in thought, word or deed, but really loving this God who has loved me
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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
3401452349 | E-mail: email@example.com
Websites: www.donbosco-torino.it |
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