Spain. On December 31, after the Morning Praise, prepared by Juan Ramón Gómez, we prepare to begin a Chapter work day.
Moderator is Fr. Eleuterio López, who presents the working plan for the morning and reads new messages that have arrived.
Fr. Provincial has appointed Fr. Antonio Venceslá
Toro as Provincial Vicar.
Fr. Ricardo Volo, secretary of the Central Committee, presents the working paper elaborated on the basis of the pre-Chapter document and the matters approved by the Chapter.
At 13:15 we celebrated the Eucharist presided over today by Fr. Carlos Díaz Muñiz, accompanied by Frs. Santos Cardo and Rafael Martínez, the three eldest members.
The Central Committee proposes three priorities in the working document: spirituality and life style, vocational ministry and first announcement. Each one of them has its objectives and proposals.
The time will be distributed between personal study, group work and at 18:30 presentation and dialogue in plenary session.
Fr. Volo presents and gives to the members a brief document on various “Affairs.” After a short time for personal reading, the dialogue starts around the different parts of the document. “Initial Formation,” “Shared Mission” and “Economy” are the points dealt with. Dialogue helps clarify, contributes additions, suppressions… And as a result of it various points are being approved. Towards 20:00 we close the afternoon working session.
A little later, at 20:15 we begin in the Chapter hall itself a prayer vigil prepared by the Youth Vocational Ministry Team. Fr. Antonio Sanjuán motivates us reminding us that we are Sons of the Heart of Mary. That is our name. With this feeling he invites us to go on a pilgrimage towards the Mother’s Heart and to enter in it. Slowly all the Chapter members begin to walk in silent procession toward the chapel (the heart of Mary). At the threshold of it a large painting graphically reflects a heart. The music, the words invite us to go deeper into our condition of sons and to lift up our thanksgiving to our Mother. Many members express motives of gratitude, which are synthesized and find full accomplishment in the greatest of them: Mary gives to us her own Son Jesus who is exposed, to whom we pray and by whom we are blessed.
This intensive moment of prayer and pleading ends and we prepare ourselves for the festive celebration of the year that ends and the new one that begins. At 21:30 we have dinner in the living room of the Claret community, well prepared and decorated for this purpose. After supper come memories of past days in the form of songs, bingos, informal dialogues in the terrace… Thus we lived the last minutes of the year. At 12:00 midnight we go through the rite of the grapes and we greet one another wishing each other happiness and peace for the New Year. Then Fr. Vicente Cuadrado honours us with a queimada. And slowly, as each one wishes, we retire to rest.