The Best Planned Picnic

IMG-20170924-WA0000

What does it take to plan a picnic?   Some friends, family, food, beverages, great weather and a soccer ball. Sounds about right!

Well, on my way to our Regnum Christi picnic with a dear friend and her children in the car, I was making all the mental plans. I wanted so much to introduce this friend to my Regnum Christi family.   How I hoped she’d get to know them and feel welcome.    I hoped her children would make friends easily and have fun all day.   I really waned to impress my friend with a large crowd of RC members showing up for the picnic and how I wished she’d feel inspired by the comradery, enlightening conversations, joy, laughter, etc.

On arriving at our destination there was only a dozen people.  We were a little early, so we made our way to the chapel and prepared for Mass. As time passed, the chapel remained empty and her children were getting restless.  She decided to take them for a tour of the Church proper and admire the beautiful altar, stained glass windows, statues and paintings.

In the quiet of my heart I pleaded with Jesus, “Lord, Mass is going to start soon, and my friend will miss Mass, because her children will be bored and cry they want to go home. Where is everybody?  Will we have Mass today? “

In God’s timing the chapel filled up, Mass began and my friend and children were sitting right behind me.  Beautiful, thanks be to God!

For lunch, we joined picnic tables, said ‘Grace’, shared foods, introduced new friends, and dug in as the heat of the day was reaching peek numbers.   I prayed, “Come on Lord, it’s the end of September, why so hot still?” Alright, I must complain less and be more, so I got out of my comfort zone and mingled with everyone, chose to be of assistance to my friend and her children. Her children were playing with newly made friends and were running up and down the fields.    We gathered everyone for a group picture, afraid that soon we’d be suffering from heat strokes. The joy of day was evident, even through the heat, conversation flowed, the enthusiasm of the young adults who attended was a joy to witness as well as, the children who were playing and laughing together!

We wanted to say the Rosary by this beautiful newly renovated walk way surrounded by giant Rosary beads, the twenty pictures of the mysteries and Stations of the cross, but it was a couple of kilometers long with no shade.  So, we stayed right where we were, in the shade of a large old tree, drinking water and some of us, myself included had to use a wet towel wrapped around my neck to cool down.

We recited the Rosary in English, Portuguese, Spanish, Italian and yes even Nepalese, which reminded me of the Christ’s call to, “ Go and make disciples of all nations.”  We sang Marian hymns between the decades in English and Latin, it added so much culture and beauty.  I thank you, Lord and Our Blessed Mother for keeping us safe in Her mantle!

As the afternoon hours came and the sun had lost its aggressive heat some of us ventured by the Rosary walkway and took in the beauty and reflecting by the stained-glass art of the stations of the cross.     At one moment the sun rays through the stained glass were playing optical illusions for us, it brought the art out in three dimensions and made it look so alive!  We lingered, reflected and prayed.  Through this experience I felt grateful that the Lord, reminded us of His constant presence!

Well, as the people began to leave, the children were still holding out.    Tiredness began to settle in and I prayed the children would be sleep during the car ride home. All I could think of was looking forward to getting home to rest with a tall cold drink.

On the drive home everyone was still very excited, so I shared some of my highlights and invited my friend to do the same.    With tears of joy in her eyes, she shared that for the longest time she wanted to go to Confession, but the opportunity hadn’t come.     Today,  before Mass,  while  touring the main church proper with her children  she found herself in a confessional cue,  but what to do with her children?    She asked a young dad with his toddler if he could watch them while she went for Confession and he said, “Yes, absolutely!”  (now that’s a Regnum Christi’s soul)!    She said, “ The Lord heard my pleas and  planned all the events to go the way they went,  so I could meet His Mercy”   She was ever so happy and couldn’t thank me enough.     The Lords plans are so different than mine, His ways are so much more above my ways. He always wins and makes everything ever so perfect.   Talk about planning!!!    Thank you Lord for always surprising us!  You keep the best wine for last!

Well as I dropped off this young family, the children were still bursting at the seams with joy, they pleaded, “This was the best picnic ever, please take us again next time, we want to come with you.”    With the joy of your heart Lord, enlarge my heart!

Written by Daniela DallaVia

Click HERE for Picnic Video.

 

 

.

Visit to Orphanage in Bethelem

IMG_1181

Two years ago, our Holy Land Pilgrimage took some pilgrims to an Orphanage in Bethlehem run by the Daughters of Charity.   Pilgrims from Brampton were so touched, before leaving for the Holy Land they handed me an envelope with a pretty substantial donation to present the orphanage. This stop was not on our itinerary,  but it was well worth the effort. Once we met the sisters and the children, our hearts melted and the rest of the pilgrims added to the donations… what generosity! After the women in our group, cuddled and tickled the children, we had to “peel” away their husbands who were at awe while still playing and laughing with them. The little girl in the pink sleeper giggled and squirmed when tickled. She was so happy!

If anyone would like to send donations from here,  please follow the instructions below. Thank you!

Personal checks are hard to cash here and there is a high commission fee on it.
A bank transfer is better.

DAUGHTERS OF CHARITY
ST. VINCENT DE PAUL
BETHLEHEM
E-mail: creche@p-ol.com

Our bank account is:
Mercantile-Discount Bank Ltd
Account No 980013-229636
Name: La Compagnie des Filles de la Charite
Saint Vincent de Paul
Swift Code “BARDILIT638”
IBAN:
IL 07 0176 3800 0000 1229 631

Address:
Mercantile-Discount Bank Ltd
Salah Eddin
Salah Eddin street 42
Jérusalem 95908
Israel
Fax : ++972-2-6288961

In Christ,
Daniela Dalla Via

Baby

IMG_1187

Maria Giuducci’s Testimony from the Women’s Triduum

FB_IMG_1497727266946

I felt a deep call to attend the Women’s Triduum of Renewal in May which was guided my Fr. Todd Arsenault, our wise and gentle “leader of the pack”. The retreat far exceeded my expectations. To have one extra day in quiet prayer and meditation refreshed my soul.

St. Elizabeth said to Our Lady, “who am I that the mother of our Lord come to me?” Similarly, I pondered, “Who am I that Mary’s child Jesus, calls me his Beloved?” Pondering this realization that I am his Beloved was a deep and profound moment for me. I knew that no matter what I’ve done or not done, or where I’ve been or what I’ve said, that my Lord loves me with His unconditional love and still refers to me as His Beloved.

This overflowing love is what molds my heart from one of stone to one of flesh; to a deeper relationship, a deeper conversion and a deeper conviction. I am grateful the Lord inflamed my heart this weekend and increased my longing to spend more time in prayer and meditation with Him, my Beloved.

In prayer, the Lord placed a vibrant burst of joy in my heart that reinvigorated my convictions to my faith and to RC and its mission to the Church. My heart is ready Lord.

“Guide me to where you want me. Increase my faith, my Hope and my charity. Let me always long to seek you in solitude but also in all people you place before me.”

– Maria Guiducci

Update from Local Committee

Thank you for your prayers for the Local Committee as we move forward in learning how to serve and support you! It is truly a journey we are all taking together…

Here is a glimpse of what we’ve been working on recently:

On Saturday, May 6, 2017, the Local Committee members gathered at the LC Community home to work on the “mission vision” for the year ahead — to “see” where we’ve been, where we’re at right now and where we are going in the year ahead. 

A vital component to this plan included two reports which were submitted to the Territorial Committee. The ‘Locality Program Plan’ and the ‘Semester Report’ (both of which have been posted to the website for your perusal and reference).

The aim of the Locality Program Plan is to propel the mission of Regnum Christi and is designed to capture the unique and specific circumstances of a locality. It is simply a tool to help guide us as we work together to meet our objectives. Our Territorial Director set out four apostolic priorities and the Local Committee developed a plan of specific strategies and objectives (unique to our locality) to meet those priorities. Our plan was prepared and sent by the Local Committee to our Territorial Director for review and approval. 

The Semester Report is a tool to share both the successes and challenges of our locality with the Territorial Director. It gives the Territorial Committee a snapshot of what is and is not working in our locality so they can know how to direct, support and assist us in the best way. This bi-annual report calls for a consultation process, inviting all of our locality leaders (Team Leaders and AFIRE team members) to share their knowledge, thoughts and opinions and help contribute to three sections: 1.) Census Data,  2). Locality highlights from the past six months and 3). Locality highlights for the next 6 months. All the contributions for our inaugural semester report were compiled and sent to the Territorial Director.

This semester’s report is truly an inspiring portrait of all that we have accomplished as a locality in the past six months. We invite each of you to read this report to see the many reasons to celebrate all the great work you are doing in our locality and be inspired to keep working together to achieve the objectives set out for the next year!

May all of us be renewed in our mission of evangelization as we look ahead with the hope and joy that comes from our call to serve Christ and his Church through the movement. 

LocalityProgramPlan2017-2018

Semester Report May 2017

My Mother in Law (Laura)’s Passing

20160514_204327

Dear friends,

Words are so inadequate to express the unfolding of last week’s events as they were carried by your prayers and immersed in Divine Mercy.

On Thursday, April 20th, birthday of Laura’s youngest child, all her children found ourselves around her bed in her remaining hours.    At the nursing home, with heavy hearts and spinning minds, we celebrated the youngest daughter’s birthday, because “mom would have wanted it this way”.    The same evening before Mass I told our Pastor of her conditions and afterwards he promptly came to pray over her the prayers for the dying.   Surrounded by her two sons, the pastor and I, Laura heard the Salve Regina in Italian and received a blessing.   Before leaving, our pastor summoned me to recite the Divine Mercy Chapel.

“Lord, you’re carrying us.”

Laura spent Thursday night in the company of her oldest son, my husband, who was watching her every single breath and in the company of Divine Mercy. Friday morning, again all her children were by her side and before noon I brought one of our boys to see their ‘nonna’ since he had an exam in the afternoon.

” Lord, your timing is always perfect.”  

Friday, Divine Mercy hour came and at 3:07 p.m.  my husband called from the nursing home, “Mom gave up her last breath”.    In the middle of Divine Mercy chaplet, still clutching the rosary beads, I thought, “Wow, look at her, embraced by Divine Mercy.”    Shortly after, I called our parish office to report her passing (what does one do at such time, I had no idea of protocol), thank God, the nursing home is only a minute from the church. When I reached our Pastor, he was on his way to her room to pray over her and sustain her children.

” Lord, you never abandon us.”

Saturday, was spent cleaning her room from her belongings and meeting with family again.

Divine Mercy Sunday, I was recommending my husband to be strong, since he had to read the First Reading.   Before Mass started the Celebrant, Priest announced the Mass was being offered for the repose of Laura.  All weekend Masses were offered in her memory.   Then again while reading the Prayers of the Faithful, my poor husband came across his mother’s name.   A sting in the heart, yet so consoling.

” Lord, you’re forever present.”

Divine Mercy Sunday 3:00 p.m. we’re gathered as a parish for The Hour of Adoration, reciting the Divine Mercy Chaplet, while my husband was planning for his mother’s funeral as it was the only time available at the funeral home.

” Lord, you accompany us in your ever so gentle ways.”

Monday, April 24th, we had to remind my husband of his birthday, since he had forgotten it.  Laura’s passing time, encompassed her youngest and her oldest children birthdates.

Tuesday, April 25th at Laura’s visitation, people we hadn’t seen in years, people who had just had surgery and even a husband of another resident from the nursing home came to pay their respects. Again, to the surprise of many, our Pastor was there blessing her body and praying for her and the family.

” Lord, you always move so many hearts.”

Wednesday, April 26th, Laura’s funeral was out of this world.   The church still decorated with the many Easter flowers, the Divine Mercy and St Faustina images were still displayed and surrounded by flowers beside the altar. It was a constant reminder of the presence of the risen and merciful Lord. Long before guests started filing in I wanted to spend some time by the Tabernacle which is in a chamber off to the side of the church proper and there was the musician/singer in deep prayer.

“You’re the giver of all gifts, Lord.”

Friends, relatives, extended family and parishioners were in somber attendance. Even some of our Regnum Christi family members and Legionary of Christ priests came to share our sorrow.    It was ever so comforting to see them, knowing they all have such busy schedules and some Regnum Christi members even took time off work.

” Your generosity Lord overflows my cup.”

A touching moment before the funeral was when a Filipino parishioner, assigned to read the Prayers of the Faithful asked me how to pronounce the name Laura in Italian and left practicing, “Laura, Laura.” Our Pastor’s tribute to Laura and homily touched many hearts, as they’re still sending us their reactions. For many, Laura’s accompaniment to eternity’s threshold was ever so regal.  She was a true princess!

 ” Teach us to see with eyes of faith, Lord.”

The day of Laura’s funeral was also the Feast of Our Lady of Good Council.  Now that our earthly “mamma” is gone into eternity, our Heavenly Mother is to be a mother to us.

“Lady of Good Council, pray for us!”

Well friends, I just wanted to share a little bit of heaven with you. I could write a book about all the details and graces we experienced. During these trying times your prayers were storming heaven and heaven heard you and the flood of Divine Mercy opened wide for Laura and her loved ones. Even during the heart wrenching moments, there was much beauty, joy, charity and above all, peace.   After receiving so much, how can anyone hold back?

“Yes, the love of Christ impels me!”

Again, words are so inadequate to express my gratitude to have stumbled into the Regnum Christi movement, but the Lord knew it from eternity, that through my Regnum Christi family I would be lead closer to Christ’s heart, my faith has been reawakened, and my heart ignited to see the hand of God in all things, especially during the difficulties. To be surrounded by such a spiritual family that reached out to me and my loved ones in solidarity, is truly a grace from God.

Finally, to discover the importance of prayer, that heart to heart communion with the Risen Lord is a true gift!

“Oh Lord, through this taste of heaven, you have increased my longing for your Kingdom!”

Christ our King!

Thy Kingdom Come!

Volunteers Needed for Local Committee

volunteers

Are you feeling called to serve on the local committee? 

The heart of the apostolic mission of Regnum Christi is lived out in the locality by its members through its sections and apostolates. The Regnum Christi Local Committee serves this mission by providing governance support at the locality level under the direction of the Regnum Christi North American Territorial Committee based in Atlanta and chaired by our Territorial Director, Fr. John Connor, LC.

The Local Committee reports to the Territorial Committee and is chaired by our Local Director, Tima Borges.  Membership consists of a representative group of Regnum Christi members and Legionaries from our locality.  Their function is to direct the common apostolic mission, fostering communion and collaboration among the branches in the locality.

The committee meets at least quarterly and is responsible for all common areas of work in the locality, including RC section apostolic work, local apostolate operations and the financial health of the locality. The committee works in collaboration with other institutions, territorial apostolates and programs, and our Legionary community.

Up until recently Veronica Touhey was the Recruitment Coordinator and Christine Cardwell served as the Local Committee’s Secretary. We are grateful to both Veronica and Christine for their generosity in sharing their time and talents to serve the locality. They have both discerned that it is time to step down and give another member the opportunity to serve on the Local Committee.

There are currently two vacant roles on our Local Community. If you are feeling called to serve the locality in this capacity please contact me or your section director.  Click here to read the summary of the two vacant roles on the committee.

The Recruitment coordinator could also be called the ‘growth’ coordinator. For us, the word “growth” means drawing as many people as possible to Christ and helping them to experience his love so that they will know him, love him, and imitate him in their own life.

Functions of the Growth Coordinator

  • Help to maintain a keen apostolic awareness in each member of the section so that they will draw more people closer to Christ and the Church.
  • Infuse a deep mystique of growth and vocational promotion on all levels, for the good of the Church. Keep promotional material current and ensure it is available at events.
  • Organize discernment courses and coordinate incorporation ceremonies at Christ the King celebration and maintain stock of the materials needed for new members (i.e. Prayer books, Commitment cards, Bibles, Crucifixes)
  • Help all members promote and invite others to participate actively in the apostolic activities organized by the section’s teams, in the formative activities, and in the spiritual activities organized by the Movement.
  • Ensure that in events there is an atmosphere of charity and apostolic dynamism that will be positive and attractive for anyone who visits and has contact with the teams of the Movement.
  • Make sure that all people discerning a call and the new members of the movement are offered personal attention. This is of paramount importance.

 

The Local Committee Secretary is an administrative role, aimed to assist the Local Director in communicating with the Local Committee members and holding each of them accountable.

Functions of the Secretary:

  • Attend quarterly meetings and record minutes of meeting, including action items and deadlines.
  • Send e-mail messages to the Local Committee members including the minutes of meeting, agenda and other reminders and updates as needed.
  • Assist the Local Director in collecting data from consultation survey’s and the annual report to be submitted to the Territorial Committee.
  • The secretary is a non-voting member who can also provide their perspective of team/ section life and can voluntarily assist with initiatives of the Local Committee.

It would be beneficial to have someone in these roles as we look ahead to the 2017-2018 calendar. If you are feeling called to the Secretary or Recruitment Coordinator role on the Local Committee please contact your section director or Tima before June 1, 2018 with any questions or to express your interest.