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We are no longer Brothers but we do not stop being Marists !

 

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II Meeting of former Marist Brothers of El Salvador

18/07/2012: El Salvador

I would like to share the experience of the II Meeting of former Marist Brothers living in El Salvador. I live in Guatemala, but I had the great chance of being present at their meeting.

There were about 20 former Brothers, of different generations, from the 1960s to our day ... There were people of all ages, accompanied by their wives.

This took place on 10 June, feast of Corpus Christi. We began with the Eucharist at 8 o’clock, in the chapel of the school « San Alfonso », with the people who take part in this celebration each Sunday.

We then went to the Hermitage – as the meeting room in the school building is called – and the  “spectacle” began: embraces, greetings, cries of joy or surprise, enquiries about so and so, etc. ... 

Br Hipólito Pérez made us welcome and co-ordinated the presentation of those taking part. One curious detail : someone, having lived many years with another, finally learned that the latter’s family name was « Napoléon » ... We also did a photographic tour of the different communities of the Province.

Br José A. Baños introduced us to the document Water from the Rock, which describes Marist spirituality.

We had a break and a snack ... It was especially a sharing in group ; people asked for news of so and so ... he has died … ;  someone else is living in  ... and working at ... We did not notice the time pass ! We were already being called to the next meeting.

Br Roberto Linares animated a little but very rich dynamic in little groups, well distributed, for further life sharing : a very profound presentation, an exchange about the aspects of the Marist life each one is living daily now, how each felt about sharing his life with someone who had been a Marist Brother, etc. And again we ran out of time.

Br Provincial took the floor again to share some news of the Institute, the Province, some concerns too ; the possibility, for example, of holding next year’s meeting at Los Cóbanos ... The gathering ended with the singing of the Salve Regina. And then we went on to share a good meal and some pleasant conviviality.

Some Brothers had come from other communities ; it was good to see Brothers rediscovering former Brothers with whom they had shared  important and sometimes difficult moments at a time in their lives. We celebrated the joy of meeting.

There is no doubt :we are no longer Brothers, but we will never cease being Marists !

_____________
Leonel de León Valdés

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