We had a good couple days of retreat with the CFR’s last week in all the three houses. There was catechesis, Mass, Adoration, and testimonies, and the guys really were touched by it. They are so similar to us in some ways. Because they live community life, they can relate to us. We were happy to have Mass for three days in a row in all three houses. What a gift!
Last week we three guys entered: John from LA, James from OK, Dan from MI. Lukas came back after he left a month ago, so the houses are getting pretty full, especially Mary Immaculate. It is nice to see so many guys. It always brings joy to help others, and that is what Community is all about. We like to help these young men and women that are so lost in our society, which focuses so much on superficial things without the reality of our total humanity. We see when new guys come in how sad they are.
At OLOH we are pretty much working a lot in landscape and gardening. After all the rain, everything is growing like crazy. If the weather holds up, we are able to do a lot of work outside, but pretty much every day we get some storms. This is life in Florida in the summer—sunny, hot, humid and every day thunderstorms. I think there is a pretty good feeling inside the houses. Those who had been more trouble, like our young Mitch, are like settling down a little bit, and that is making us pretty happy.
At Mary Immaculate, we are making some good progress in our dormitory, which finally is insulated. We are working on the siding. Hopefully, in not too long, it will be done, but it is always hard to predict. The costs are still pretty high to arrive to the end, including having another new septic and drain field and the new road, so please help with it! The guys are living in pretty simple and unique conditions, but they seem happy with what they have. More and more we see that, if you ask people to respond and if you offer only a simple life, they are happy with what they have.
Mary Immaculate is so beautiful during the winter, but so bad during the summer with the many, many mosquitoes, but the guys are used to it and don’t complain. Even those that had left and came back, like Lukas, knew what to expect and made the right decision to come back.
At SMG the girls also are tasting the Florida weather and the nice big fat mosquitoes. I really encourage them to work inside in our big shop, and they are making many different crafts and quilts. We would you to help organize something in your parish, where they can speak few minutes about the Community after every Mass and sell their crafts, because it will help our missions in South America. Please find some parishes willing to do it. It is a nice way to spread the word of the Community and getting some very unique and pretty items that the girls are making. It will give them more motivation to make more!
Lindsay’s dad, Paul, came for an experience with her. It was a blessing for the two of them, for sure, but it also was a very special gift for the girls to have Paul there with them. Emilia’s parents from Italy are coming for an experience, too. The girls also will at St. Catherine in Orange Park FL on June 25, for a day of celebration on the anniversary of the apparition of our Lady in Medjugorje to give testimony and to lead music during Adoration. We also preparing something special on July 6 for the Feast Day of Santa Maria Goretti at the house, where we will invite friends of the Community to celebrate for the gift of life that the house has brought!
Joyce and I we will be in PA next week to meet with the regional families of region 1, 2, and 3—and any others who want to participate. If you can, come and join us, no matter what region you are from. With a smaller group, we can talk much more specifically. It will be a nice opportunity to see all of you, and we are very happy about it. For info, contact Kay at firstname.lastname@example.org, because we do not know where we will be. On Sunday 14, we will be at the CFR’s in Newark for the 25 anniversary of priesthood of Father Glenn Sodano, one of the founders of the CFR’s. Then we will spend few days in the area!
Mother Elvira and Father Stefano went to Fatima last week. They had been invited by a group of people to see different properties in the hope to have a Community house close to the shrine. It looks like it will happen pretty soon. We will see!
At Pentecost in Italy on the hill of Saluzzo, all the consecrated from the Community renew their vows. Three of the young women who are in the Formation House received the veil. Please keep all our consecrated in your prayers because they will be the pillar and foundation for the future of Cenacolo. Most of the people who come to the Community because of serious problems get better, and then they say “thank you very much” and “goodbye.” Instead the consecrated will be in Community forever.
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