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21 January

Saint Agnes
1952, First Marist Brothers foundation opened in Rwanda
1996, Brother Basilio Rueda, Superior General 1967-85, died in Guadalajara, Mexico

Marist Calendar - January

Mediterranean Province



Syracuse: encounter of elder brothers

16/05/2019: Italy

Twenty-six Brothers over 70 years old have participated to an encounter organized by the Mediterranean ProvinceWe were coming from Spain, Italy and Lebanon. From 2 to 7 May, we have met at Syracuse, in the Italian island of Sicily. All this region, known as the Magna Grecia in old times, has been a crossroads of different cultures, Greek, Roman, Arab, Normand…, leaving each one its own trace.

The central position of the “Pilgrim Hostel” where we were lodged, allowed us to move easily on foot to different places and to develop an intense program of activities, carried out with a calm rhythm, adapted to our age.

We have organized religious activities such as the Visit to the Sanctuary of Our Lady of Tears in memory of the miracle that happened in 1953; the cathedral and the church of Saint Lucy, holy patroness of the town, and the large underground tunnels of San Giovanni’s Catacombs.

Among the cultural activities, we can mention the visit to the Neapolis Archaeological Park, with a huge Greek theatre, a Roman amphitheatre and the famous Ear of Dionysius. We also visited the Archaeological Museum Paolo Orsi and had a full day outing to admire the captivating mosaics of Piazza Armerina and the famous Valley of the Temples in Agrigento.

A full day was devoted to a peaceful touristic walk through the Ortigia Island, the historical heart of Syracuse, presided at the entrance by the beautiful bronze statue of the Syracusan genius Archimedes. We enjoyed the squares, the narrow streets, the historical buildings, the seafront promenade and the typical gastronomy. To complete the day, we made a boat trip around the island until the nearby sea caves. 

Intense and touching were the two afternoons we spent with the international Marist community of Syracuse, part of the Project La Valla 200>, made up of two brothers, two laywomen and two laymen from five different nationalities. Gathered with them at the CIAO Centre, we were able to understand to joys, difficulties and hopes of this type of communities and, at the same time, to enter more deeply into the reality of immigration in which they are fully committed. We are very thankful to them for their enthusiasm and cooperation with us.

At the end of the encounter, all the participants showed their appreciation for the chosen place, the programme implemented and the brotherly atmosphere prevailing during these days.


Br. JM Ferre

1964 visits