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Giugliano, Naples - The La Valla experience

16/03/2012: Italy

In the Marist school of Giugliano in Campania (Naples, Italy) many things are happening: not only meetings and class reunions. The Marist community itself in these days of intense activity "on territory" has also experienced a special time, by opening its doors to some young animators of the school’s youth ministry, particularly close to the Marist spirit.

For one week, from 14 to 19 February 2012, 4 young people (3 from university and one in the last year of high school) lived in community with the Brothers, sharing their timetable, especially the opening and closing times of the days, from rising to the evening rest, joining in the community gatherings for prayer and the Eucharistic celebrations. They had their meals together, the times of recreation, rest, conversation, tv and games.

This experience has already been proposed in different years and in response to the requests of numerous young animators, we already have other persons on the waiting list, who will join us in the first week of Lent. The experience is open to boys and girls who wish to experience a style of life very different from that of the family: that of a religious community committed to the field of education.

At the end of the experience, the community met with the young people to do an evaluation together and hear the reactions of the youth. The first group expressed its satisfaction with a letter delivered to each of the Brothers present. Here are the impressions of Angelica, a university student of 20:

“To live the La Valla experience is something deep which has made me feel changed within... you feel the community as your family and learn to appreciate and understand everyone’s diversity, to be sharing in a unique great charism, the  Marist one, which is always so strong whatever the age or stage of our life… To begin the day with prayer and to finish it with the Mass makes you feel strongly the presence of Jesus, and to know and love him more :)A… You become curious and you want to follow him more closely... Now I feel I have an even tighter bond with my companions in the adventure and with the whole community... Thanks to all of you for making me always feel at home :D” (Angelica).

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