Rome, Italy. The Claretians of Rome decided to anticipate the Feast of the Founder to Sunday afternoon in order to take advantage of all the possibilities that this day of the week offered. In fact, a great number of members of the Claretian Family, together with the parishioners, gathered in the Basilica of the Heart of Mary. Cardinal Aquilino Bocos, CMF, presided at the Eucharistic celebration, with the concelebration of Father General and a large number of Claretians concelebrating. In the homily, the Cardinal exalted the figure of St. Anthony Mary Claret, well known by all those present, emphasizing that:
“we do not celebrate the feast of a hero, of a great man, of a great preacher, of an indefatigable propagandist…, but of a saint. And not just any saint, but one whom the Holy Spirit wanted to place in his Church as a mediating instrument to bring together communities that would live the Gospel and work generously to win new brothers and sisters for Christ, according to a particular apostolic lifestyle.
He did not forget to mention that:
“the situation of our world, of our society, of our Church and of our consecrated life offers many lights and not a few shadows. Technical progress, advances in communications, interculturality, the many gestures of solidarity, etc., are worthy of recognition. But we are suffering a strong breakdown in the scale of Christian values: faith is darkening and unbelief is increasing, we are entering the post-truth era and information no longer enjoys credibility, we have lost confidence in our relationships and fidelity does not seem to be a virtue in our time. We have many fears and insecurities in the face of pandemics, wars, the ambition of a few and the marginalization and discarding of the vast majority.
After the celebration, the guests: the Claretian family, the representatives of the chaplaincies, and the staff of the General Curia, had the opportunity to share moments of great fraternity and joy around a family dinner.
On the 24th the community, with the absence of the students, summoned by the Pope at the Vatican to remember the anniversary of the beginning of Vatican II, gathered in the Museum-Chapel of the General Curia to share the Eucharist in a more intimate atmosphere, together with the memories of the Founder that are preserved in Rome.
We thank the Lord and Mary for allowing us to experience these moments, which are a gift that our Founder gives us every year on the occasion of his Feast.