Community News From Comunità Cenacolo America
Back from Italy
Jan 28, 2008 in Community News
Just arrived from Italy after a wonderful celebration for Mother Elvira’s birthday. Everything happened last Saturday where at least 1000 people got together in an arena in Fossano, 30 km from Saluzzo, town of the mother house. The day was full of events. First we greeted for her with a loud crowd singing “auguri a te” in the way almost like in a stadium. She arrived, and greeted everyone with a warm talk full of emotion. She is always the first one to be amazed by what the young men and women do for her. Then we had Mass. That is always the culmination of what Comunita Cenacolo is all about!
We had a great lunch that was prepared by a large group of parents and friends of the Community with our famous “Polenta.” It was very appropriate because of the winter cold weather.
In the meantime, I had a chance to visit with some of our American guys and girls who were there for the event. I had a chance to see Tom, Joe S. Mason, Dan L. Erik C., Aaron Q., Sean, Lyle, Luke, Lauren, Lindsey, Layne, Kathleen, Rebecca, Sarah, Susannah. It was a good a moment, giving me a chance to check on them and see how their journey in Community is going. They all seem to be doing pretty well with normal difficulties like everybody else living in Community. I also had a chance to see a lot of old friends from different parts of the world, who were there for the event. It is always beautiful be there. Thinking back about all the past years, the Community has come a long way.
In the afternoon we enjoyed seeing some of the skits that the young men and women had put together. They gave a lot of joy to Mother Elvira. It is always amazing to see what these youth, once lost in the world, now are capable of doing. There were a lot of laughs for Mother Elvira who every year looks always younger and really deserves all these expressions of love.
Monday was the day she spends with the young men of the Community at Envie. Every house of the Community brings a present to her. Believe me, there are some beautiful works of art done by these young men. Hopefully, I will be able to upload photos from the event soon. We as a Community in Florida do not have great artists in our houses. Even if we did, transporting anything would be hard. We decided to make an 8 minute DVD of the 3 houses, showing her what is happening in Florida in a very funny way. David and Andrew and all the guys that participated in the video really did a good job. Mother Elvira really enjoyed it and was amazed by the scenes of the two new houses that she has not yet seen. The guys there laughed like crazy, especially when they recognized some of the guys that were in Europe before, like our legend Minh!
The next day was the time for the girls who also presented some amazing art works, many even better than the guys. Lindsey from the house of Spinetta painted a beautiful picture of Jesus as a present from the house. We can see how talented she is.
Also a lot of skits and dances were performed in the afternoon. It was a lot of fun. The event of Mother Elvira’s birthday I think is the most like a big family celebration because it is very internal. All of us in different ways show how much appreciation we have for the gift of her life, given to us in a very tough and loving maternal way. You can see the love and how much she cares for all of us.
On Sunday the mayor of the city of Fossano expressed a few words of gratitude to Mother Elvira and to all who were present. It touched me when he said that the light he sees in the eyes of our guys is so clear and joyful. He said that for some reason does not see the same light in the eyes of his own kids!
The rest of the days passed quickly between spending time in Community, participating every day at Mass in different houses, and spending some really quality time with my family since my dad was in the hospital. Thanks be to God, after he spent 23 days in the hospital, the bad infection was cured. They did a little surgery just to see if there was any more damage, and it all came out clear. He was able to go home the same day I was coming back to the States. The Holy Spirit really enlightened me when I booked the ticket because it really gave me the right time to do everything I needed.
Now I am back to our reality here in Florida. I just arrived, and I am ready to begin again. We are going to EWTN. We will be on Life on the Rock this coming Thursday, January 31. I will take about ten young men with me for the show! There is a lot of excitement about this! They are all wondering if they get to go!
I am sure I have a lot people to call or email. I will do my best! The guys here in Florida seem to be doing fine. They are busy with everything going on for the preparation for March retreat and the show, “Passion of Christ.”
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