BURN WITH LOVE FOR EUCHARIST AND MARY
POPE TELLS MARIANS
VATICAN CITY, MAR 12, 2005 (VIS) - Pope John Paul has written a Message to members of the Congregation of Marians of the Immaculate Conception, known as the Marian Fathers, as they celebrate their General Chapter. Made public today, the Message is dated March 10 from Gemelli Hospital.
The Marians were founded in Poland in 1673 by Servant of God Stanislaus of Jesus and Mary Papczyński who, says the Pope, "knew how to spread and courageously defend the truth of the Immaculate Conception even before it was proclaimed as a dogma of faith. Faithfully follow his example and propagate Marian devotion all around you."
"In this year especially dedicated to the mystery of the Eucharist," writes the Holy Father, "make this wonderful Sacrament even more the center of your personal and community life, placing yourselves docilely at the school of the Blessed Virgin, 'Eucharistic woman'. ... If your heart burns with fervent love for the Eucharist and for Our Lady, the shrines you run in various parts of the world will be even more genuine 'cenacles' of prayer and welcome."
Noting the many "exemplary religious" who have been Marians, "often in difficult and risky situations," even to the point of giving their lives, the Pope asks the congregation "to intensify your apostolic drive, committing yourselves with renewed enthusiasm to the promotion of priestly and religious vocations and satisfactorily preparing those aspiring to your institute to be generous workers in the Lord's vineyard. May your pastoral collaboration with lay faithful grow, dedicating special attention to the young and to the needy, to the marginalized and the elderly. Be apostles and witnesses of Divine Mercy for everyone."
"'For Christ and the Church': May this continue to be the program of your religious family to whom I wish an abundant harvest of apostolic fruits."
MESS/GENERAL CHAPTER/MARIANSVIS 050314 (300)