Last week, the St Frances X. Cabrini Shrine in Upper Manhattan hosted over 1,500 youth on pilgrimage. The energy and faith of the teens was electrifying! It was an honor to introduce them to Mother Cabrini, to answer their questions, and to pray with and for them. All were headed toward a Redemptorist Mater conference. The first Redemptorist Mater seminary is outside Newark, on the grounds of an orphanage founded by Mother Cabrini.
Cabrini Lay Missionaries (CLMs), Guadalupe Province, shared a beautiful Feast of the Sacred Heart and the celebration continued until June 13th.
On the Feast Day, we had a special prayer service, via Zoom. During the service, Adela Jarquin and Marianne McGowan, renewed their commitment to the CLMs for 3 more years. We are so grateful for their continued presence and their work toward the Cabrinian mission.
Following the renewals, five new CLMs made their initial commitment for 1 year. We are blessed to have Digna Merchan, Sheny Hinestroza, Susan Pierson, Veronica Hernandez-Perez and Victoria Ortiz-Perez begin their new journey as CLMs. Digna lives in New York, Susan in Pennsylvania and Sheny, Veronica and Victoria are from Guatemala. Each person received a certificate, their CLM handbook and a symbol, which is worn as a sign of being a CLM. They will be sharing more about themselves in the coming weeks in our CLM Corner in The Update.
We certainly did not let distance or a pandemic stop us from celebrating the gift of our new CLMs. On June 13th, we met again on Zoom. The Cabrini Sisters were invited to join us so they could meet our new members. We had Sisters from Colorado, Guatemala, New York, Pennsylvania and Nicaragua. It was a beautiful gathering as our new CLMs spoke about themselves and the amazing work that they are doing. A special blessing was prayed by all for our new CLMs. We pray that they will continue to bring the love of Christ to the world.
Thank you to everyone who helped to make this such a special time for all our CLMs.
VATICAN CITY (CNS) – At a prayer service on May 31st in the Vatican Gardens, Pope Francis concluded the Catholic Church’s monthlong rosary marathon with special prayers to Mary, Undoer of Knots, one of his favorite titles for the mother of Jesus.
Pope Francis and his guests prayed that Mary will “untie the knots that oppress us materially and spiritually so that we can witness with joy to her son, our Lord Jesus Christ,” said a Vatican news release.
Pope Francis entrusted to the Blessed Virgin five prayer intentions, five knots to undo,”
the statement said. The five are: injured relationships; unemployment; violence, especially domestic violence; universal access to healthcare and vaccines; and the need for renewed pastoral enthusiasm and outreach.
The rosary in the Vatican Gardens concluded a month of special recitations of the rosary from Marian shrines and parishes around the world, all with the intention of asking Mary’s intercession to help end the coronavirus pandemic and to give strength to people working to end it or suffering its effects.
June 11 is the Feast of the Sacred Heart of Jesus
Devotion to the Sacred Heart of Jesus is devotion to Jesus Christ Himself, but in the particular ways of meditating on his interior life and on His threefold love — His divine love, His burning love that fed His human will, and His sensible love that affects His interior life.
Christ crucified is the revelation of the Father’s glory. Understanding this splendid revelation fills our hearts with the unique joy of being loved and participating in the salvation of the kingdom. This was the message entrusted by the Sacred Heart of Jesus to St. Margaret Mary Alacoque, calling us to render love for love, to make amends for the indifference and the coldness of so many hearts, to free our own hearts from egoism and violence. We learn from the Sacred Heart of Jesus what it means to give ourselves to the world. ~ Frances Cabrini: Remembering the Journey
For Mother Cabrini, steps, words, movements, thoughts were the field of action in which the Heart of Jesus could work, especially in souls who were open in expectant and faithful love. Joyful intimacy with the Sacred Heart of Jesus, an abundant communion of love, is available to everyone. Those who love Jesus are happy when He is loved by others, but at the same time, they desire their own love to grow. ~ Frances Cabrini: Remembering the Journey
Let us pray:
Oh, Sacred Heart of Jesus, may we be patient and persevering in times of desolation, trusting that your love and grace will be ever present.
May we be grateful for the gift of your consolation and let it invigorate our faith, our hope, and our love.
May we always discern for this “work of your heart” in the light of your good spirit and hold firm in times of discouragement and darkness. We ask this, O Jesus, trusting in your promise. Amen.
Each week during Lent,
one of the Cabrini Lay Missionaries has offered a reflection.
The reflection for Easter Sunday is offered by
Lorraine Campanelli, CLM Director
Alleluia! Jesus is Risen! Alleluia!
After 40 days of not using the word Alleluia, isn’t it a magnificent word to hear? “Alleluia, Praise the Lord!”
Our journey to Jerusalem is over. Everything Jesus said has come true. In John 2:19, we read, “Jesus answered them, Destroy this temple, and I will raise it again in three days.” They did destroy the temple but as promised, Jesus rose in three days and with it brought eternal life and the forgiveness of sins to all of us. Truly, this is an Alleluia moment! Jesus, crucified, is alive!
As we end our reflections let us be reminded of the final blessing for our Easter Mass,
‘Go in peace, Alleluia, Alleluia. Thanks be to God, Alleluia, Alleluia.’
Let us go and celebrate the Good News! Blessed Easter to all!
On February 2nd, the Feast of the Presentation, Sr. Ayantu Abera Bishaka and Sr. Tigist Hailemariam Loha, both from Ethiopia, made their first profession of vows in a ceremony at the Sacred Heart Novitiate in New York City.
The following account is a reflection on the ceremony by Evarlyne Ndunge Ndeti, an MSC candidate.
I do believe in meaningful words that are made deeply from the heart as a promise. These vows were something that I witnessed as Sister Ayantu and Sister were offering their lives and service completely to God for His greater Glory.
The significance of religious life is embodied in the profession of vows taken before God and all those who gathered for the ceremony.
Sister Diane Dalle Molle, MSC, Superior of the Holy Spirit Region, and Sister Genet Henok, MSC served as the official witnesses of the recitation and signing of the vows. In declaring their intentions, Sister Ayantu and Sister Tigist answered their call and responded, “HERE I AM”.
Everyone present and virtually watched the two newly professed sisters make their temporary vows to God. The two radiant young women vowed that they would live out their words and continue spreading the Love of Jesus to the entire world. They were full of joy, hope and enthusiasm.
I could not stop rejoicing and thanking God for the opportunity of attending this special occasion, albeit virtually, joining many MSCs.
While listening and watching their ceremony, I gave my silent word and prayer to God and asked Him to continue blessing and protecting them.
May God Bless You, Always.
~ by Mark Pattison, Catholic News Service
WASHINGTON (CNS) — Hours before his inauguration as president, Joe Biden and incoming Vice President Kamala Harris were joined by the spouses and congressional leaders from both political parties for what was termed a Mass of thanksgiving early Jan. 20 at St. Matthew Cathedral in Washington.
Among those invited to the Mass were House Majority Leader Nancy Pelosi, D-California, a Catholic, House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy, R-California, new Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-New York, and Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Kentucky.
Sen. Amy Klobuchar, D-Minnesota, tweeted, “Such an honor to be able to attend the inaugural church service this morning at the Cathedral of Saint Matthew. It is aptly called the ‘Mass of Thanksgiving.’”
Jesuit Father Kevin O’Brien, president of Jesuit-run Santa Clara University in California, was the scheduled celebrant.
It was important to Biden, she said, that a bipartisan group of congressional leaders join him as “the beginning of a path forward” to national healing and political unity at the outset of his term.
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Many teens have been unable to make their long awaited Kairos Retreat in the spring and summer. While there is no way to replace the 4-day retreat experience, Cabrini Retreat Center in Des Plaines, IL, has been able to offer “virtual sacred space” as a way to keep the spirit of Kairos (which means God’s time) alive.
Today’s youth have grown up communicating through social media, which is a blessing in this era of physical social distancing. Teens now experience a much needed “Cabrini welcome” in a new form.
Cabrini Sisters and friends are welcome to view posts and encouraged to “like us” Posts can be found on Instagram at @cabriniretreatcenter and on Facebook at Cabrini Retreat Center Kairos Connections.
Below is a sample posting:
Cabrini Retreat Center Kairos Connections
Published by Frances Cabrini · July 8 ·
“Not only did Cabrini house me for 3 1⁄2 days, it changed my life. That building allows for exponential growth amongst groups of teenagers, and it begins to feel like a second home. Cabrini is staffed with very welcoming staff members who will go above and beyond to make you feel comfortable while you stay there! On my Kairos retreat, I was given the opportunity to grow closer with people in my grade, and I wouldn’t have had time to do that if it wasn’t for Cabrini opening their doors to us. Each and every moment at Cabrini felt like
a different universe; the air truly is better at Cabrini.”
This weekend, on July 4th, those of us in the Cabrinian community who are in the United States
will be observing Independence Day, a national holiday.
At this unprecedented time in our world and in our nation’s history we pray:
God of justice and Lord of all, you guide all of creation with fatherly care.
On this Independence Day, we recall the day when our country
took its place among the family of nations.
You reveal that those who work for peace will be called
your daughters and sons.
Continue to send your Spirit to touch the hearts and minds
of all who cherish the rights to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.
As you have called us to be one nation, grant that under
your providence our country may share your blessings
with all the peoples of the earth.
We ask this through our Lord, Jesus Christ, your Son,
who lives and reigns with you in the unity of the Holy Spirit for ever and ever.
May the Sacred Heart of Jesus bless you, your loved ones
and all those who believe in the promise of peace and good will.
~ Priests of the Sacred Heart of Jesus, Sacred Heart Monastery
~ by Mark Piper, National Catholic Reporter
I have been the director of the Cenacle Retreat and Conference Center in the Lincoln Park neighborhood of Chicago since June 10, 2019. The last few months have been difficult on all of us who operate retreat centers. We are used to the cycle of welcoming and sending forth, of hellos and goodbyes, but waiting so long after a goodbye to say hello once more is new to us.
In late February, we took note and precautions due to the pandemic. But by March 13, before the state of Illinois issued its shelter-in-place mandate we chose to close to the public until we could safely reopen. As with retreat centers across the world, [we] provide the space for people of all walks of life to go out and do justice, love, mercy and transform our world. [At retreat centers] whoever they [may be], they are welcome to grace our simple, holy halls.
Every [retreat] colleague of mine has been burdened and vexed. We’re figuring out how to pivot, how to live our mission as places of welcome, acceptance and healing, under new and existential duress: necessary prolonged closures.
in Illinois, Nancy Golen, Director of the Cabrini Retreat Center in Des Plaines, shared that these mandates have, “caused Cabrini to be separated from our ministerial identity as a place of physical sacred space.”
“Approximately 80% of the guests at Cabrini are youth. The closure came at a time when we would have been at full capacity with multiple Kairos Retreats,” she said. “For decades, we’ve welcomed and cared for young people. As we plan our reopening there are many considerations to restore that sense of sacred safety. Cabrini’s sponsors have been open to offering the retreat space for other forms of service.”
Civic or health care representatives have approached some centers about utilizing their space to house first responders, quarantined individuals or homeless persons. Some obliged. Other retreat centers have found that impractical due to vulnerable populations who live on-site. Nancy said that, “Due to the way our facility is designed, and the nature of COVID-19, no fit was found for the space to date.”
“We miss our guests. Despite bleak financial realities, we maintain a trust in a God of love and abundance,” said Mark Piper. “A trust that, when it is safe, we will say ‘welcome’ once again. Until that day of our next holy hello, we’re in anxious solidarity, praying this long goodbye.
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