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Fire on the frontier

29/06/2013: Costa Rica

Cordial salutations, friends of the Marist family, from Los Chiles of Costa Rica. Today we are opening the windows of our community to breathe in with you the festive air of the presence of Marcellin on this frontier TICA-NICA (Costa Rica – Nicaragua), by means of our hands, our hopes, and our hearts which want to burn, bringing us a little closer to those « Burning embers » which our Superior General, Br Emili Turú, talks about.

Marcellin is not only the saint dressed in house clothes and slippers to remain at home ; this year we bought him some new shoes and took him for a walk on the village square, presenting him to the parish community.

On8 June, Saturday, at 7 in the morning, the three Franciscans of the parish gathered around the altar to celebrate a beautiful Eucharist in honour of our Founder, which had never been so well accompanied by a numerous congregation and by many children attending catechism.

The whole celebration was Marist : chants, prayers, offerings, and homily, the responsibility of Br Efraín Romo. The parish community reacted with warm applause indicating acceptance and novelty !

TheConstitutions, the violets, the image of our Good Mother, the bread and wine as well as the pictures of the life of Saint Marcellin, painted by the children, were the Marist symbols presented on the altar.

A new gesture to emphasize was themoment when all the children present went up to the altar and surrounded the painting of the GREAT FRIEND OF CHILDREN AND YOUTH. The principal celebrant asked for the Saint’s blessing on each of them. Through our hands, the Saint being honoured presented little bags of sugared almonds, which was for them a fantastic joy going by their smiles and the speed with which they returned to their places with the « spoils » won. Br Teódulo had prepared a bookmark representing a simple profile of Marcellin taken from the personal letters of the Founder. He gave that to the children at the end of the eucharist. This was to make Saint Marcellin better known « on the frontiers »… May the fire become « burning embers » on this frontier and others.

At the end of the eucharist, those taking part shared an aperitive. The « chef » showed himself generous and creative, well up to the occasion.

The Marist spirit and fraternity were beyond doubt very visible : all was very fine ! I am going to come back next year, that’s for sure… How beautiful this celebration was ! A very big thank you, Brothers !

These were some of the sentiments expressed by the people there…

Thank you, Lord, for allowing us to journey to the new lands from this corner of the world, following your humble servant Marcellin Champagnat.

______________
Br Teódulo Hernando

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