German Guanellians as Solidarity Globetrotters

During the Marian Month of May both Guanellian entities in the Black Forest have been very active.
Fr. Rocky accompanied a group of Italian pilgrims to Fatima. Fr. Wieslaw went for the annual pilgrimage to Our Lady of Lourdes. Confreres of the Italian Mission have been busy preparing children for First Communion, Confirmation, and Marriage. On June 2nd subsidiary Bishop Gerber will celebrate the confirmation of many youth of our district. Guanellian Alumni of Naro are organizing a solemn feast and procession of St. Calogero, patron of Naro, through the streets of Pforzheim mid-June.
The other half of the Procura has been busy raising funds and refreshing contacts with our best donors: Missio, Munich; Kindermission, Aachen; the Bishop’s office, Freiburg; and the charitable nuns of the Pious Union in the Black Forest.
New projects from the Philippines have been submitted and partially funded. The Good Samaritan Pharmacy has received sufficient donations to purchase life-saving medicine for a long time. The astonishing thing is that even agnostic friends of Guanella Works have opened their pockets. New sources of charity have become members of the GLM, increasing the circle among professional and influential pesonalities from the Italian community.
We are following the development of missions in West Africa, encouraging confreres to send well documented projects for submission to agencies in Germany. As The most recent in Africa is the Guanellian shelter in Mbeya, West Tanzania. There is an urgent need of sufficient drinking water for the disabled communities as well as for the neighboring Christian villages.We’ll apply for support at Missio, Munich. We are closely connected since we ‘adopted’ a young boy, whom Fr. Furaha has given my first name. Little Gero is a sunny disabled boy, who has become in Germany the symbol of Guanellian loving attention toward God’s neglected children in Africa and beyond.
The last coordinated activity is with the German Pious Union and the establishment of a branch of the St. Josef Confraternity in Indore/Madhya Pradesh. Mother General Simone has obtained approval of Bishop Chacko Thottumarical, the local bishop. The German Procure plans to submit the project to the Pious Union in Rome for Canonical approval. We hope that this will foster practical cooperation among Guanellians with the efforts of the Daughters of St. Josef in South India to increase the veneration of the Holy Patriarch, great St. Josef, and promote the blessed apostolate for the salvation of the suffering and dying around the world. This brillant inspiration of our Founder should become an imperative act of all Guanellians practicing his maxim, “The worry for the dying of this day is an important duty of true Christian love toward our neighbor.”
May the Holy Spirit this Pentecost inflame our hearts and turn our thoughts to be attentive to the poor.
Gero Lombardo, German Guanellian Procure

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Feast of St. Calogero

Pforzheim  – For 55 years the Italian migrants have celebrated their patron, St. Calogero, who is venerated in Sicily with impressive processions and celebrations typical of that culture. The Guanellians missionaries assisted at the celebration June 20th in Barfüßerkirche. Fr. Wieslaw Baniak celebrated Holy Mass. In his homily Fr. Rocky sought to reawaken the faith in our Lord Jesus Christ. A short procession through town followed Mass. The men carried St. Calogero and shouted, “È viva Dio e San Calo!”
The people on the one hand are joyful, cheerful and very devoted to St. Calogero, on the other hand they are plagued by the various ills, demons and superstitions. Some suffer various forms of hatred, division, defamation, revenge, jealousy, and desire to impose their ideas at any cost. In spite of these evils Christian hope is never extinguished. If these people imitated the virtues of St. Calogero, fasting, prayer and reading Scripture, I think many evils would disappear and even an army of people (magicians, fortune tellers, and the like) would end up jobless as they give stronger witness to the Christian faith with their lives.
A collection was taken up to help a needy family in Bretten. A meal and time of song and dance was shared. Thank you to the Committee for organizing the event. May you all participate in the Holy Mass more frequently. “È viva Dio e San Calo!”

Calogero procession 2 Calogero procession 1

Back to the Roots

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Pforzheim – June was an intensive month.  It was rich in events and new experiences, but it also provided us with an opportunity to reflect deeply to rediscover our old roots, our own DNA. We found our traditions, family ties, and devotion to our saints with plenty of hilarity! After the first pilgrimage to Lourdes, our two Guanellian parish priests accompanied an additional pilgrimage to a famous German shrine. This one is known as, Our Lady of Zwiefalten, where more than 1000 Italian devotees of our confederate State of Baden-Württemberg met with the archibishop of our original diocese in Agrigento; Monsignor Montenegro. The Pforzheim Group enjoyed the opportunity and made our confreres happy by demonstrating so much faith and devotion to God’s Mother!
In mid-June we had the pleasure of a visit from Vicar General Fr. Umberto Brugnoni, who stepped onto German soil for the first time and felt with his hands and heart the progress of our presence in this beautiful and generous country after only six months. After a casual meeting at our Procure in Tiefenbronn, we toured the northern part of the large Guanellian parish, which will be served by Fr. Rocky after his vacation in India.
On June 21st we celebrated the traditional St. Calogero Feast. Father Umberto presided at the solemn Mass, and was assisted by Frs. Wieslaw and Rocky. Every last seat in the small Church was full. A short procession with the statue of our black patron, Calogero, took place through the city center of Pforzheim, and ended with the benediction of homemade devotional bread. As Sicilians practice around the globe in all Naresi communities, many devotees offered donations.  At the end, our co-organizer and President of the St. Calogero Committee, Mr. Ignazio Minotta, presented an envelope with 400 Euros for the disabled children at Poonamallee, India. My emotion and that of our confreres, was overcome by the presence of twelve former alumni of the St. Calogero Institute at Naro; crowning the feast with a souvenir picture of he and our confreres. Most of them arrived in Pforzheim in the early 60s, and are still great supporters of the Guanellian parish along with their growing families and friends. The next appointment will be at the 2015 St. Calogero Feast when the newly re-founded Commitee of the Friends of St. Calogero will be more active in fundraising for other Guanellian projects in the missions of Africa and/or Asia.
As far as our work at the Procure is concerned, we patiently wait for an answer concerning the Sivagangai Projects. We spoke recently with Fr. Kulandaisamy during the Provincial Meetings in the USA, and asked for his patience until the end of June. Please pray that this project, the other new projects for Vietnam and the supported “Don Mimi Leprosy Center at Tale/Mindanao, Phil.” may find generous donors in the coming weeks. For these specific projects, we have entered a new phase with Sr. Cecille, FMM, who is coordinating the documents with Fr. Charlton Viray so that the testament of Fr. Mimi can be combined with them.
I would like to say a few words about beloved Sr. Giulietta Saginario, the last surviving member of this generous family who has granted the Guanellian family three priests and a nun. She has given a testament and left the inheritance of her family to the Leprosy Center at Tala for children of leper parents. She is very sick and all the friends of Fr. Mimi should accompany her in this delicate moment of her earthly life. As an adopted brother of the Saginarios, I invite you to join me in this prayer crusade around the world: But Fiat Voluntas Dei also for Sr. Giulia!
Let us praise the Lord that he allows us to be his “cooperators” in seeking and distributing funds to his “precious and weak sisters and brothers.”
Laudate Dominum quia mirabilia fecit :
Praise the Lord Who works miracles every day!

Gero Lombardo,  German Guanellian Procura