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Birthday of Brother Emili

28/01/2011: General House - Photo gallery

On 24 January 2011, the General House had the joy of celebrating the birthday of the Superior General. Br. Emili Turú has reached the youthful age of 56.The highlight of the celebration was the evening Mass in the Sala Champagnat. During the day, the new Provincials had been arriving from Nigeria, Australia, Papua New Guinea, Southern Africa, Madagascar, and the Americas for their meeting from 27/01 to 03/02, and so it was as if all the Provinces had come to add their voices to the choir celebrating the Superior.The various people employed in the house had their opportunity in the morning to express their congratulations to Brother Emili over a cup of coffee and biscuits, with the addition of a glass of champagne They offered Brother Emili a beautiful flowering plant: a towering red bromelia. For all, it was a family moment, full of fraternity and joy. The photos show faces beaming with smiles.Mass in the evening was at once solemn and simple, with Marist simplicity. Br. Antonio Ramalho was animator of the liturgy and Br. Ernesto, organist, filled the Sala Champagnat with melody. The Mass had a truly suggestive setting: behind the table of La Valla, work of Marcellin, and a gigantic photo of l’Hermitage. On the side walls, the photos of the statues of Marcellin, at Marlhes, at Saint Peter’s in Rome, and of the Good Mother. The walls were also covered, from floor to ceiling, with the numerous signatures of Champagnat.We were about forty persons, of 19 nationalities: the General Council, the Brothers of the General Administration, students, visitors, and the newly arrived Provincials: a true microcosm of the Marist world. We sang and prayed enthusiastically in Spanish, English, French, Portuguese, Italian, Sri Lankan, Catalan... The Mass readings indicated the route for Christians to follow, but also reminded us of the qualities of Br. Emili, the gifts of the Spirit: love, joy, peace, goodness, patience… And John’s Gospel recalled that « there is no greater love than to give one’s life for one’s Brothers ». The prayers of intercession in the different languages also expressed fraternal affection and gratitude for Br. Emili. « To give one’s life for one’s Brothers » was what was placed in relief by the video which followed the Mass. It summarized the first year of life of the Superior General, showing Br. Emili present at the four corners of the world, supporting provincial chapters, taking part in great moments of Marist life or of the Church. One of the most beautiful photos showed him walking hand in hand with a little girl from Haiti, the country so tragically affected by the earthquake. The serenity on the faces of the little girl and the Superior offered a suggestive image of the Marist educator and the Brother.After the video, some speeches. The vicar General, Br. Joe Mc Kee, emphasized Br. Emili’s qualities: a practical man, capable of transmitting serenity, an appreciated leader, above all, a man of great simplicity. Br. Ernesto, who was translating into Italian, showed himself a translator of great talent: he ended up saying in advance what the orator had still to express: a miracle of fraternal sympathy!After the Mass, the video and the speeches, we entered the kingdom of Br. Javier Ocaranza, who had set out all sorts of snacks and drinks, before going to a generous and joyful supper.The day our Superior General passed the threshold of 56 years was truly a time of joy, fraternity, esteem, true affection, gratitude. In all truth, we could say to God, our Good Mother, and Marcellin: « Thank you for the gift of Br. Emili to our family ». And we can say with the same sincerity: « Thank you, Br. Emili, for living so well what the Lord says: ‘There is no greater love than to give one’s life for one’s Brothers!’ »

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