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Brothers speak of its importance for personal renewal



The Escorial Experience

10/01/2008: Spain - Photo gallery

Evaluations made by the Brothers who attended the August-December 2007 session at Escorial have been collected and summarized. The evaluations show that this time of renewal is truly important, that the course content is of value, and that the experience has enriched the life of each participant.

« Many thanks to my Province, to the Escorial team, to the Brothers who were my companions in the program, and to all those who in any way were responsible for making the program possible. I have found new depths in my life as a Marist Brother. I have had a taste of new ways of relating in community. I have found happiness in the community and with my Brothers: in prayer, celebrations, common experiences, walks, manual work, sharing, relaxation. I have received support, affection, friendship, good advice, happiness, enthusiasm, a sense of humor. Thank you to all; thank you for all.” (EG)

“I have been re-affirmed in my vocation and in the Marist charism. I have been helped in the process of growing religiously by unifying and integrating holiness in daily life. I have seen proof that change is possible despite the advance of years. The experience of solidarity was very helpful for faith development. I have come to know myself better and better to accept myself: to look at my life as a process and my future with hope.” (PG)

“I have had a special chance, unexpected and unmerited. A gift from God and from our Good Mother. What was most important and what I appreciate the most: the Brothers. They have been for me like the Gospel treasure. Without looking for it, I found it. And so, I thank God and everyone who made the experience possible. Our contact with the Badajoz community and with the boarders at “Proyecto Vida” was a special time, as was the week on the theme, the Vitality of Each Province. A sincere thank you to all who help us to see. May the Lord help me to follow their example.” (AG)

“What will remain truly engraved upon my heart is the names of all those who made the program with me. The quality of life, the good example, the human qualities: I benefited from such elements all through the five months of the program. They gave me special enthusiasm in what I experienced. My stay at Escorial has helped me to know myself better and prepared me to undertake a new phase of my life with renewed enthusiasm.” (LP)

“Marcellin’s home is my home; his family is my family; his mission is my mission. It is a home that includes everyone; a multicultural family. It is a home ready to receive those who come; a home which one may also leave so as to go out and meet others. His is a family with works with other church or civic groups to build a better world and to welcome the Kingdom. I make Marcellin’s passion my own: the passion for Jesus, the passion to make Jesus known and loved by young people and by the poor. I rekindle my faith in confronting present-day disbelief. I am a witness to hope. By my friendly and caring presence, hope comes to birth. Like Mary, I make myself more free each day, more ready to give my entire life to God and to others in the ordinary events of daily life.” (EN)

“I feel that I have lived a time of grace. This is so because I was able to give attention, time and effort to fundamental ideas and aspects of my life. The outcome is that I am now better disposed, and have a much more positive attitude about continuing to lead a life anchored in God and at the service of the Kingdom.” (JM)

“I am very pleased to have taken this course. From the religious point of view, I find myself stronger and more ready to give my all to God and my congregation. From the intellectual side of things a number of my doubts have disappeared.” (GF)

“Calmness and exterior quiet made it easy to live in interior peace and enthuse-iastic contemplation concerning the new stage of life upon which I am embarking. To know that I can still, at my age, do many things for children and young people who are having problems.” (MA)

“J’ai nettoyé et approfondi le puits. L’eau de Dieu maintenant sourd avec force. Je veux arroser l’espérance là où j’irai”. (ER)

“I have cleansed and deepened the wells. The water which is God’s gift is flowing forcefully. I desire to water the fields of hope wherever I go.” (ER)

“There were moments when deep experiences occurred, human, religious and Marist: meeting Brothers from other Provinces and other countries; the courses which were offered; the Hermitage and Holy Land pilgrimages; the solidarity experience. I thank God and the Institute for permitting me to have such experiences. Now I grasp with greater clarity that the focus of my religious life is to be openness and joyful availability to the plans which the Lord has for me. I am filled with peace and hope as I move into the future, because I know that He will be with me always.” (HB)

“I hold a conviction deep in my heart : that it is possible to construct a life-giving community, brotherly relationships, sharing attitudes; that my limits, yes, are there to see but that they must be accepted; I am not a less of a Brother because of my limitations. God who has loved me, called and chosen me is ever faithful and never changes. He sends me as a bearer of the Good News of his love for the world; that our Good Mother is ever at my side, giving me strength, boldness and love.” (NC)

“The length of the course and its rhythm, the community… created the conditions necessary for me so as to be able, ever so slowly to work on refinding peace. The conditions were brought about so that the course would become a small seed that could germinate anew in my heart. I thank the Lord for all that I experienced and all that I shared.” (JR)

“A closeness to my confreres, discovering God within them. I felt that one could find God anew each day, and that He was ever at work. The optimism which that has created is a source of life and contentment. Today and yesterday, God is ever at work.” (HB)

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