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Schoenstatt Hearts Afire: 2nd Chance in July


by Fr. Bryan Cunningham on 26/07/2014

Tree of Evangelisation for Schoenstatt Hearts AfireWelcome to Schoenstatt Hearts Afire, the second unit in July,  on Wednesday 30th July at 7.30pm at the Shrine, St John Fisher’s Kearsley. For evangelisation to be successful and to remain vibrant, it needs to draw strength from the “roots”. The deeper and stronger the roots are, the more alive the tree will be, and the healthier the tree will be. In a certain sense, you could say that the roots are the most important part of the tree. It is so important for our spiritual lives and for the process of the new evangelisation, that we have clarity what our “roots” are, as sources of life. In this unit of Hearts Afire we will look at the roots of our life of faith in the spirituality of Schoenstatt, especially in our Covenant of Love, the Shrine as a place of grace and charism of Father Kentenich. Please put this date in your diary. We look forward to seeing you on the night and encourage you to bring a friend.

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Jesus is the Way


by Fr Duncan McVicar on 25/07/2014

I always used to ask God to show me how to live faith. It’s already a few years since I had a very significant dream, which is vividly imprinted in my mind and in my heart forevermore. No doubt it was an answer to my prayers and it made me feel so deeply cared for and loved! The dream: “I climb up a rather high mountain together with many other people. We walk in silence on a narrow path, in a row.  I understand that we are pilgrims, when I see a church far away high up on the mountain, beautifully “set” on the horizon. I am full of expectance. I love the mountains and I enjoy the view and the peaceful climbing. When we reach the church and when everybody is inside, I immediately notice a priest who shuts all the doors in what seems to me a definitive manner. He blocks the doors nailing pieces of wood on them. Instantly I feel claustrophobic and ask the Priest to please open the doors again. I don’t like to be closed in, I feel uneasy, I want to go outside again, but there is no reply from the priest. I look around and there I see a staircase. I run up the stairs and indeed I find a little door which opens to a balcony and I step out: What I see in that moment is so immensely moving! I see a beautiful green valley stretched before my eyes (it does not seem the same valley we have come from). At the end of this valley there is a golden city.  Everything is so extremely brilliant and beautiful that my heart fills with a longing so strong that I can hardly bear it. I’m overwhelmed and stand there in utter awe for quite a while. Then I do not resist anymore. I cry out, I want to go there, I feel within my heart that the Place is like Paradise. It’s as if from the shining town a voice called me, “come, come, here is beauty, here is love, here is peace”. Then I hurry downstairs shouting: “How can I reach the place I’ve seen from the balcony? There is a golden city! Please open the doors…”  Nobody answers and I feel deeply frustrated for being closed in. Then I find myself standing right in front of the Altar with a little golden Tabernacle. The Tabernacle is beautifully decorated. While gazing at the Tabernacle I suddenly become silent and I feel at peace. In that moment I hear a beautiful voice saying “You know the way, I am the way, there is no other way to reach the place you’ve seen… come through the Tabernacle, this is the only way”. The Voice vibrated softly in my heart. My reaction to the “invitation” was strange. I thought “the Tabernacle is too small to get through, I’ll never manage”. The dream ended and I woke up just in that moment when I was doubting to make it “through” the Tabernacle. I remembered vividly everything and finally, my heart strongly pounding, I understood. JESUS had told me that HE WAS THE WAY! HE IS THE WAY to perfect joy! And I remembered the words He said to His disciples during the Last Supper “Do this in memory of Me”. The Holy Eucharist! The Tabernacle! Since I had this wonderful dream I approach the Holy Eucharist in much deeper awareness that JESUS TRULY IS THE WAY.  [by Margherita Rueger]

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Covenant Mass in July


by Fr. Bryan Cunningham on 16/07/2014

Welcome to our Covenant Mass on Friday 18th July at 7.30pm at the Shrine, St John Fisher’s Kearsley. In Schoenstatt Hearts Afire Series we are looking at the roots of our Faith and how we nourish our lives of faith so that we can become true evangelisers. In June we looked at the great gift of God’s grace in the life of the Church: Our faith finds deep roots in Sacred Scripture,  the Word of God. The celebration of the life of grace is developed through the Sacraments especially in the gift of the Eucharist, the Sacrament of Reconciliation and Marriage as a source of love for a lifetime. On Friday we will look at the roots of our life of faith in the spirituality of Schoenstatt, especially in our Covenant of Love, the Shrine as a place of grace and charism of Father Kentenich. You are invited and please bring a friend!

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Seeing The Rainbow


by Fr Duncan McVicar on 11/07/2014

One rainy afternoon I was driving along one of the main streets of town, taking those extra precautions necessary when the roads are wet and slippy. Suddenly, my daughter, Sarah, spoke up from her relaxed position in her seat. “Dad, I’m thinking of something.” This announce-ment usually meant she had been pondering some fact for a while, and was now ready to expound all that her six-year-old mind had discovered. I was eager to hear. “What are you thinking?” I asked. “The rain!;” she began, “is like sin, and the windscreen wipers are like God wiping our sins away.” After the chill bumps raced up my arms I was able to respond. “That’s really good, Sarah.” Then my curiosity broke in. How far would this little girl take this revelation? So I asked… “Do you notice how the rain keeps on coming? What does that tell you?” Sarah didn’t hesitate one moment with her answer: “We keep on sinning, and God just keeps on forgiving us.” I will always remember this whenever I turn my wipers on. In order to see the rainbow, you must first endure some of the rain.

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YOU say – but GOD says…


by Fr Duncan McVicar on 11/07/2014

You say: “It’s impossible” God says: All things are possible (Luke 18:27)

You say: “I’m too tired” God says: I will give you rest (Matthew 11:28-30)

You say: “Nobody really loves me” God says: I love you (John 3:16 & John 3:34)

You say: “I can’t go on” God says: My grace is sufficient (2 Corinthians 12:9 & Psalm 91:15)

You say: “I can’t figure things out” God says: I will direct your steps (Proverbs 3:5-6)

You say: “I can’t do it” God says: You can do all things (Philippians 4:13)

You say: “I’m not able” God says: I am able (2 Corinthians 9:8)

You say: “It’s not worth it” God says: It will be worth it (Romans 8:28)

You say: “I can’t forgive myself” God says: I Forgive you (I John 1:9 & Romans 8:1)

You say: “I can’t manage God says: I will supply all your needs (Philippians 4:19)

 

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Taste and See Family Mass in July


by Fr. Bryan Cunningham on 03/07/2014

Tree of Evangelisation for Schoenstatt Hearts AfireYou are invited to our Taste and See Mass 13th July at the Shrine , St John Fisher’s Kearsley starting at 3.30pm with Holy Mass and followed by a shared meal, concluding at 5.30pm. In our last Taste and See on the Solemnity of Pentecost we looked at the roots of our faith and the gifts of the Holy Spirit. Continuing with the Schoenstatt Hearts Afire we want to look at the second “set of roots” of our Faith in Schoenstatt’s spiritual way. Please come along and bring family and friends with you. Only this week great progress was made with the Mosaic Prayer Garden. Here is a picture of the meditation on the Holy Family of Nazareth and how they live their Covenant of Love with each other and God our Father.  (more…)

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Covenant of Love Day in Brasil – Not just World Cup


by Fr Duncan McVicar on 02/07/2014

Geraldo Alckmin, the Governor of the State of São Paulo, has officially instituted October 18th of every year beginning in 2014, as a commemorative date as the Covenant of Love Day.  Therefore, Law N° 15.462 is published in the official calendar of the State of São Paulo as “Covenant of Love Day”. “The Covenant of Love Day was established and it will be celebrated annually on October 18th in the State of São Paulo”.  This is the published text of Law 15462 in the Official Journal of the State, on June 20th, signed by Governor Geraldo Alckmin. In her report, Rita Passos, the state representative, justifies the influence of the Schoenstatt Movement in the Brasilian culture through the thousands of families who receive the visit of the Schoenstatt Picture of Mary, the Pilgrim Mother. The Schoenstatt Rosary Campaign has brought forth “true missionaries, an authentic campaign of evangelization integrated to the objectives and projects of the diocese and the Brazilian National Conference of Bishops – CNBB”. Moreover, she mentions the influence of the Schoenstatt Shrine in Atibaia, which is a centre of pilgrimage and of prayer and considered a holy place, visited by thousands of people who come to express gratitude, to ask for graces or simply to learn about it, since it is about a place “where it is good to be”. The favourable votes of the other representatives and the approval of the governor are the recognition of the reality that was presented:  the very positive influence of the Covenant of Love, that will be one hundred years old, is part of the Brasilian culture. In this way a commemorative date is added to the entire state that accommodates more than 21% of the total population of Brazil, more than 43.6 million people. The celebration of this date is an important contribution for the present and the future, the Covenant of Love exercises an important influence in the history and in the culture of all Brazil. It is worthwhile to recall that in some cities this date is already officially celebrated by public agencies, such as in Londrina for this year 2014, and the city of Confins, which has introduced a Public Holiday on October 18th, because of the influence of the Schoenstatt Covenant of Love among its population. [From Sister M. Nilza P. da Silva]

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