n o. 6 5
vincentian marian youth International Bulletin
“You will receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you; and you will be my witnesses” (Acts 1,8)
The Christian life is life in the Holy Spirit; however, we can agree with the Pope Benedict XVI that “for many Christian, the Holy Spirit is still the 'Great unknown'”. Our annual motto 2008, that is also the motto of the next World Youth Day in Sidney, invites us to re-discover the Holy Spirit as the Master of inner life, as that who comes to help us in our weakness. The Spirit renews us interiorly to make us witnesses of God's Love in the midst of a world that looks for and does not find. He makes us capable of bearing fruits of “Love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, trustfulness, gentleness and self control” (Ga 5: 22-23). Definitely, the Spirit helps us to walk through new life paths, giving us the courage to live the Gospel and the audacity of announce it. LIVING AND ANNOUNCING are two essential verbs for the witness. When we welcome the Good News of Jesus Christ, we experience the fact of being reborn, we experience a new life that questions our contemporaries and qualifies them to let themselves be transformed by the announcement of the Gospel, the Encounter with Christ and the Grace of the Spirit. Therefore, during this year I invite you to welcome this suggestion of the Pope: “…Each one of you must have the courage to promise the Holy Spirit that you will bring one young person to Jesus Christ in the way you consider best, knowing how to “give an explanation to anyone who asks you for a reason for your hope, but [to] do it with gentleness and reverence” (cf. 1 Pet 3:15). Being a witness! It is a gift that comes from God and as far as we are concerned, it is the compromise of let the Spirit to be the protagonist in our prayer, in our interpersonal relations, in our personal and communitarian projects, in our service to the less privileged and in our commitment within VMY. May the Holy Spirit make us Yasmine Cajuste dream about great positive projects and maintain us in the path day after day! International President
around the world : America and western Europe APU: A catwalk of anniversaries in the Countries of southern South America: Congratulations to Paraguay and Argentina! VMY celebrated their 15 and 20 anniversary respectively.
En Caico, Rio Grande del Norte, the young celebrated the Carnival with the residents of the old people's home Pedro Gurgel. It was coordinated by Daughters of Charity. VMY Bela Cruz, celebrates this year its 30th anniversary, its members organized the 1st Campaign: Charity Carnival. The aim of this event was to distribute food donated by some families among 7 poor families in the Ipueras neighbourhood (Alto do Bode). It was a positive experience and a different way to live carnival.
Apart from celebrating 150 years, VMY Chile has a new President since January 2008: ROBERTO VIDAL, Congratulations!
COLOMBIA-BOGOTA Among its several activities, we can underline the National Assembly JUCOVI, in Armenia (October, 2007). The central topic of the Assembly was: “The Human rights according to the Social Doctrine of the Church, under the Vincentian Charisma”
Last month the VMY National Camp was held in El Valle de la Estrella, Limon. The motto of this gathering was: “Leaders of the Hope” The main objective was to strengthen and renew the natural leadership, putting it at the service of the others. Province of the West: VMY-FIAT Alaska has carried out many activities in the Last months: On the evening of November 27 they celebrated the Feast of Our Lady of the Miraculous Medal. The evening began with a special prayer service and blessing of medals by pastor, Fr. Fred Bugarin. Fr. Fred and youth leaders then distributed the medals to all who attended. In November, 2007, as well as on February 5, they have organized different fund-raiser events: a 24-hour food fast and a Mardi gras celebration. Everyone really worked as a team! Province of the Midwest (Congregation of the Mission): The VMY trip to Kennett, Missouri, was a huge success; they were honored to be the hands and feet of Christ to the needy in the area. On the other hand, Jessica Donze represented VMY in the National Convention of AIC. On January 13, they celebrated their 4th anniversary, Congratulations! Moreover, VMY works with “Hosea House”, a non profit organization aiding the poorest zip code in the St. Louis City; and from February 29 to March 2 VMY is going to hold a Retreat bringing teens together from different cultures and nationalities to grow in leadership and faith.
National Encounter in el Berceau, with the participation of some 100 members from the different regions (January, 2008)
In October it is necessary to emphasize the formation initiative with Martine McMahon about the lectio divina. Visits to the groups were also held, as well as the Vincentian Family meeting with Fr. Manuel Ginete, in December. During the course 2007-2008 the 9 active groups of the country are going to work under the motto “Let's build the civilization of love”.
Participation in the 2nd National Councils Encounter, Europe and Middle East, in Slovakia (December, 07). In august, they had a Service Experience in the community of Mollas-Elbasan, Albania and a pre-teenagers' National Camp in Rivotorto (Assisi). The VMY National Council participated in the Youth Meeting with the Pope Benedict XVI in Loreto.
PANAMA PERU DOMINIC REPUBLIC
VMY has a new National Council. ISMAEL ARCHIBOLD is the President. The Vincentian Family of Peru celebrated its 150th anniversary in February. On February 9, the Central Mass took place in the Cathedral of Lima. The Mother Superior of the Daughters of Charity as well as the Superior General of the Vincentian Priests attended this event. For further information you can enter the Peruvian web site: http://www.jmvperu.org/ http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Oovub1P77fw
In the Elective National Assembly held in January, 2008 the new members of the National council were chosen. DELIA INMACULADA DIAZ was reelected as National Coordinator.
VENEZUELA The 5th Vincentian Family Encounter in Venezuela took place in the Altos Mirandinos, in the house Madre Mazarello. The motto was: Vincentian Family, builder of a new society.
The pedagogy of the prayer in VMY
GENERAL ASSEMBLY Spiritual Life “Give me a man of prayer and he will be capable of everything. He may say with the apostle, 'I can do all things in Him who strengthens me'” (St. Vincent). Nowadays, within the cultural time we are living in, the logic, that is focused on the praxis and on the productivity seems to dominate. Apparently there is not space for the contemplative dimension. Our young are immersed in this logic and I believe that the Charisma given to them in VMY is very current. In a world where it is worth who produces, who has a good appearance, who agrees fixed plans, who lives for the success, who cares more about the making than the being; the young are called to live a new dimension, capable to illuminate each young person's lifestyle through the discovering of the contemplative dimension of the existence. St. Vincent reminds us that a man of prayer is capable of everything: the contemplative experience has the force to engender and structure the human and spiritual identity of the believer. The prayer experience that the young of our association are called is fostered by the contemplation of everyday life, where Christ is present in the Encounter with the poor. This Encounter turns to prayer content; one learns to offer to God the things one has received every day. This helps to surpass the narcissist attitudes in the spiritual life, because in the prayer young people often focus only on themselves, risking the prayer experience to become a dry empty insignificant reality. Secondly, prayer on the way of VMY young people maintains and fosters the missionary passion that characterize their life and their existential choices: When praying they notice that it is necessary to find an appropriate place to be yeast and seed that dies and bears fruits. In this sense, prayer helps to live personal faith not as solitary adventurers, but as people who compose a community, that has engendered us and encourage us along the way. This passion teaches VMY young member to take with him/her all the pain and hope of the poorest; the experience of Prayer make him/her aware of that call and helps him/her to have the courage to participate in the construction of the Kingdom of God Finally, we can not forgive the Marian dimension: As Mary did, a young person of VMY learns how to put him/her in God's hands, thus, to be the “YES” to God for all the humanity. As Mary did, his/her presence in the world should be discrete and essential, but capable to see the needs of the others and to live within the world illuminating and guiding lost young hearts towards the Great Heart of God. All VMY Prayer is Marian due to the style of total availability to carry out, in his/her own life God's will, as Mary lived it during her earthly life. To sum up, we can affirm that these are the three pedagogical characteristics of the Prayer in VMY: Attention in everyday life, Missionary Passion and Marian Dimension. Fr. Calogero di Fiore
helped me to find T E SVMY T I Jesus M OChrist NY
Chers amis JMV, Dear Friends of VMY: The experience I am writing on these lines is a gratitude expression for the Wonders of Our Lord. I feel a special gratitude for the change of look I have experienced in the Encounter with That who is the Way, Truth and Life. As the Blind of Jericho, I have also recovered the sight and I have been healed by Jesus in the Gospel (Mt. 9:29-30). I am a young university student from Algeria (A Mostly Muslim country) I was touched deep down inside on a reflection day I had in VMY. The topic was: Commitment in the Church and Service to the Neediest. On that day I had an Encounter with Christ in the Eucharist that followed the talk. I felt Our Lord was calling me. He was telling me: “Follow me” as he said to his disciples Andrew and John, two thousand years ago. Looking back, I think this encounter was not a coincidence. If I go back to some months before, I followed my friends who were VMY members in their activities, encounters, services and retreats, but I was almost as a blind, “I was there only for curiosity”. At the beginning, this following did not tell me something special, however I was always there, with them. Unconsciously, and even without noticing it, Our Lord was preparing His land in me, through this VMY group, to leave the seed that will change radically my life: a re-conversion, passing from being a “passive” Christian to an “active” one, that is to say, a more committed one. Today, as VMY moderator, I have understood the deep meaning of service to the neediest, the commitment of building a world of justice and peace. I have understood the deep sense of my Christian IDENTITY. Mother Mary gives me her graces every day; she also strengthens me in the difficult moments a Christian use to face in this country. The Holy Scripture is for me an inexhaustible source to foster my faith. St. Vincent's example helps me to express my faith through my deeds. My wish during this Lent is to invite all the young to leave a personal experience with God through Prayer, Penitence and Almsgiving. In fact, within its activities, VMY provides us with, many chances to make the Encounter with Jesus Christ possible. Hugues Auguste, Moderator Visit our new web site section “VMY Today and Forever”: http://www.secretariadojmv.org/inter/jmv_Hoyspre/en/menu_en.htm
International Council and Secretariat
On January 3-6 the VMY International Council met in Madrid, to hold its ordinary gathering of 2008. All the members of the Council attended it. They were welcomed and assisted by the three young volunteers of the Secretariat. They were very intense days full of common prayer and reflection about some important topics for the life of VMY. The next International Council Meeting will be in Madrid, on January 8-11, 2009. The General Council of the Congregation of the Mission has appointed Fr. Pavol Noga, CM (From Slovakia) to assume the position of VMY Sub-Director General and VMY International Secretariat Director. The entire Association welcomes him, and at the same time it expresses its gratitude to Fr. Pedro Castillo, CM (Venezuela), for his encouragement and his management Service in the VMY International Secretariat for the last six years! Let's continue our Mission wherever we are! The Director General approved the National Statutes of VMY Slovenia, on January 1, 2008 in the Feast of Our Lady Mary, Mother of God. On the same day he approved the text of the VMY Lebanon National Statutes. On January 31 and February 1, some leaders of the different branches of the Vincentian Family met in the CM General Curia to share reflections and projects. It is good to emphasize the adoption of a logo for the VF International, the project of Continental Workshops in 2009-2010, and the preparation for the 350th anniversary of the Death of St. Vincent de Paul and St. Louise (2010). In 2008 we will continue reflecting and working together on the Systemic Change. If you are interested in buying the Medal and/or the Religious Print of our Association, you may place your orders directly to the International Secretariat (email@example.com). For more information you can enter: http://www.secretariadojmv.org/inter/children/newpublications.htm