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Celebration of Saint Marcellin in Chile

16/06/2006: Chile

I am going to tell you about a simple and moving Eucharist celebrated last Saturday. It was then followed by a lunch at the brothers’ house in Santa Monica Street, where the Marist Fraternities of Chile gathered together to celebrate our holy Founder.
The Mass was celebrated by a Jesuit priest, the nephew of one of the sisters of our fraternity. The celebration was beautiful, full of simple and profound gestures, in an atmosphere of friendship, welcoming, faith and gratitude. There were also times of humour in celebrating the terrestrial and eternal life of Saint Marcellin.

After the lunch, we headed towards the house of our brothers in Sotero Sanz Street, to share with them our joy and to have a moment of spontaneous and community prayer. On arrival, we found ourselves in front of the door of the Nunciature, next door to the house of the brothers; Bishop Aldo Cavalli, the nuncio, greeted the people who were arriving.

And someone said:
- It’s the bishop!
I shouted loudly:
- Eh, My Lord, we have prayed for you this afternoon. We are a prayer group.
Another added:
- We are some Marist fraternities!
He then raised his hand to greet us and said to us:
- Oh, the Marists!

And he called us over by his hand. I was a metre away and I walked towards him. As I am one for joking rather than protocol, I greeted him by hugging him and I said to him:
- Pardon me your Eminence, from far away I did not know who you were…

He was very happy… and we all greeted him. We told him that we were very moved because we were celebrating Saint Marcellin and that we had come to greet our little brothers. He then told us that the Marists were good neighbours, co-operative and generous, etc.

As I am bit of a comic, I started the song ‘El misionero’ in the middle of the street. The Nuncio applauded us and he seemed as happy as a child…

We were going to leave when somebody said to me:
- Invite him to come with us!
I then said to him:
- Your Eminence, would you like to come and pray with us?
He said:
- I would be delighted to! He closed the door of the Nunciature, crossed the street and we took him to the brothers.

The brothers were very happy to have the visit of this joyous group of laypeople with the Nuncio…
The activity took place in the brothers’ television room. Nelson Pizarro reminded each person of their gifts and we said a prayer of thanksgiving and recited some Hail Marys. We sang, holding everybody’s hands and we prayed by listening to our heart…. Brother Eulogio said a few kind words to the Nuncio. He then gave us a beautiful speech and we all sang the ‘Regina Coeli’ with the brothers and the Nuncio. It was marvellous!

I feel that the Holy Spirit manifested himself in all the gestures and all was a gift from the Lord and from Marcellin for us who have the Marist heart and who are happy to feel ourselves to be Marists.

Ah! We then sang to the Nuncio: ‘Rejoice in being Marist!’ as we had learnt in Colombia during the American meeting of Marist Fraternities… Everything came from God, from the Virgin and from Saint Marcellin.

Later, I did the reading of all that in faith…

I said some jokes to the Nuncio… And he looked at me tenderly and thanked me for having done what I had done and for being as I was, very spontaneous, a little disorderly, without taking protocol into account, and especially for having invited him as he had a wonderful time.

I said to myself then: Thank you Lord for having loved me so!

Finally, still moved and grateful, I want to share all of this with you dear friends.

Mónica Zúñiga, Santiago

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