Pilgrimage to Medjugorje

Man does not live by bread alone but by every word that comes from the mouth of God (Mt 4:4). Pilgrimage to Marian Shrines is spiritual food that nourishes our soul. I accompanied a group of pilgrims to Medjugorje November 1st-5th. With deeply motivated spiritual quest we all participated in the spiritual activities such as Holy Mass, Eucharistic adoration, Confession, Veneration of the Cross, Way of the Cross, climbing to the mountain of the White Cross, Holy Rosary climbing to the mountain of Apparition. We were also enriched by an organized meditation of the Marian Way of the Cross and by a witness of conversion. Above all we were really blessed to participate in the apparition of Mary, Queen of Peace to Myriyam. Though disturbed by photographs and videos, I just closed my eyes and experienced the atmosphere of peace during the time of apparition. Then Myriyam communicated the message that has been translated into many languages and announced to the people over there. I thank God for this gracious moment and thank Mother Mary for her motherly blessings.
If only man accepts her invitation to fight against evil with five spiritual arms, he will definitely find peace and he will lead a meaningful life on earth according to the will of the Heavenly Father. For our struggle is not with flesh and blood but with the principalities, with the powers, with the world rulers of this present darkness, with the evil spirits in the heavens. Therefore, put on the armor of God, that you may be able to resist on the evil day and, having done everything, to hold your ground (Eph 6:12-13).
Fr. A.M. Arokiadoss, SdC


Pforzheim Celebrates St. Guanella Day!

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Pforzheim – For the first time, the Italian community and the German friends of our town and district celebrated October 24th as an official event for the whole community. Both confreres have been fully immersed in the details of this celebration. Fr. Rocky is now converting  his Indian driver‘s license into a German license to become mobile for a larger pastorate in the northern part of the MCI territory where eight villages with nearly five hundred Italians are waiting for regular holy Masses in periodic sequence. Furthermore, Fr. Rocky has had the chance to accompany a group of believers from our parish to the Marian Shrine of Medjugorie in Croatia. The photograph shows the group in front of the well known shrine. Every year, thousands  pilgrims travel there where apparently the Virgin Mary appears frequently to the vigilent. Although the Vatican has not yet given a formal approval to these apparitions, the Marian devotion attracts yearly devotees from everywhere. The Italian community has been pilgrimaging there for two decades, and now our Guanellian parish priests have continued to cultivate this devotion.
As far the activities of our procure are concerned, on September 14th we had the chance to make a stop in front of the burial shroud of our Founder and that of Blessed Clara at Como. During the long and silent colloquy with Saint Louis Guanella, Inge and I asked for his intercession and spiritual help in order to overcome our unforseen difficulties. I have promised our holy Founder that I would not give up until my other dreams in Germany and in other parts of the world are carried out.
In Como we also met with Brother Mauro, who was preparing his few belongings before joining our Manila Community where he has now arrived, and has been received by our dear confrere Fr. Charlton Viray. From him and previously from Fr. Luigi De Giambattista, we came to know that the so called “Don Mimì Project for Children of Leperous Parents” is starting to form and slowly headed in the right direction. It is an inter-congregational project between the FMM, the Franciscan Sisters of Tala and our Manila-Philippines Houses. I have already received part of the file from Sister Cecille Martinez, and as soon as all of the documents are here, we’ll start our submissions and requests for additional funds from the German Relief agencies. One part of  the legacy left by Sister Giulietta Saginario has now arrived at its destination. I am convinced that Fr. Mimì laughed when he heard the news! From Mexico we received a new request for  financial help from our new Guanellian parish church. We’ll convey the request of Fr. Andrés Velasco to the appropriate Department in the Archdiocese of Cologne, and hope to receive a substiantial donation. Asci Como and Puentes Spain have each granted 7000 Euros for the erection of a provisional barn until a more solid construction can be built through the help and efforts of the many friends of Fr. Velasco, now acting at Amozoc-Puebla.
May All-Saints show us the right path to the heavens and teach us everyday that the essence of our faith is an open heart to the needs of others, with open ears to the imploring voices of the Unknowns! Stay blessed and humble!
Regina Sactorum ora pronobis! Queen of all saints pray for us!
Gero Lombardo,  German Guanellian Procura