On Saturday, December 18, we celebrated Mother Frances’ feast in Padua with our friends and relatives, and with the communities of Casa Nazareth and Porta San Giacomo. It was a special occasion for Associates both because it gave us a chance to celebrate the Founder, and because it provided a good reason to see our Franciscan Sisters of the Poor again. This year we also celebrated the 35th anniversary of the Associate Relationship, and Carole, Giacinto, Stefano and Valerio renewed their covenants. The event took place in the Charity School in Padua, inside an historical and completely frescoed and restored hall.
The event required a careful preparation. Everything was special: the presence of Congregational Minister Sr. Licia, Sr. Maria Chiara’s set up a liturgical dance, and the celebration itself which was prepared by the Associate. For those who renewed their Covenants, it was the conclusion of a path which had began last summer, and was guided by Sr. Loredana and Sr. Tiziana. The welcome we received from Sr. Licia made the emotion we felt a shared joy.
“It was a very special renewal,” says Valerio, “both because I lived felt deeply my personal discernment and because it was the first time that three brothers and sisters accompanied me on this journey. I felt very strongly the presence of God among us and a joy that is still alive inside of me”.
“This renewal was more difficult than I thought it would be.” says Gigi. “I discovered once again that the Covenant is not a formality but a true renewal, maybe also a revolution and a rebirth. I reflected on what it means to be an SFP Associate. I listened for answers from the natural world surrounding me in Messina. My YES was not obvious, but it was a YES of joy shared with all the Congregation, with the Associates and with sr. Licia and Sr. Marina in particular, who supported me.”
“The emotion grew within me as the upcoming event approached. I felt responsible for its success.” Said Carole. “I was happy for the presence of Sr. Licia and the other Sisters, and I was especially thankful that my daughters attended. Also, I want to send a deep ‘thank you’ to those who helped prepare us for this day.”
Written by Carole, Giacinto, Stefano e Valerio
Published: February 14, 2017