Rome (Italy). On 18 May 2023 in Rome, in the theater hall of the Generalate of the Institute of the Daughters of Mary Help of Christians, the Novices of the International Novitiate Sister Teresa Valsè-Pantellini of Rome presented “Beyond us”, a story in music, dance, theater, and art, which tells the story of two Daughters of Mary Help of Christians. Present at the show were the Mother General of the FMA Institute, Sister Chiara Cazzuola, with some General Councilors, the Generalate Community Mary Help of Christians, the Community Mary Help of Christians of the International Novitiate of Castelgandolfo, other FMA, and friends.

Unlike the shows of previous years, this time the novices decided not to present a single figure, but to narrate a relationship, the one between Blessed Sister Eusebia Palomino, and her Animator in the house of Valverde del Camino, Blessed Sister Carmen Moreno, martyr in the Spanish Civil War.

“Initially, the choice was directed to Sister Eusebia… but then reading her life, we realized not only that without the notes taken by Sister Carmen about her, today we would know perhaps little of this extraordinary life, but also that their relationship was so free and deep that they encouraged each other in the good and accompanied each other to holiness… without the one, we would not have the other”.

The five Novices of the 2nd year chose to tell the story of these two women through five objects that represent the aspects that most affected them: trust in Providence and love for the poor, certainty in the daily presence of Mary, the ability to live Salesian joy and cheerfulness, docility in the moment of trial, humility, and littleness, that of forgetting oneself to be able to do at least a little good.

The theme of the whole show was, however, the coffee liqueur:

“We discovered that Sister Eusebia, writing her recipe book, did not limit herself to the simplest or most useful things, as we would have expected knowing the poverty of her time, but also studied this unexpected recipe. This tells us of her finesse, her passion for everything she did, her joy, her desire to celebrate. For us, coffee liqueur represents all those things that would never come to mind to do for those who are not really in love… those things that make no sense and that seem just a waste if you do not enter into the logic of God, into His gaze.”

Even the choice of the title “Beyond Us” was not accidental. “Thinking about how to tell these two lives that we had talked about so much, we met with various difficulties and realized that we could never do it alone. So, we decided to ‘expand’ and ask for help from many people who assisted us in a thousand ways: with the arrangement and recording of music and songs, with the drawings, by lending us clothes, props, who took care of all the technical part of the lights, microphones, even those who prayed and accompanied us so… in short, many people!

And it struck us that not everyone was just being available, but being open to the relationship, doing even more than we asked them to. We had to affirm this right away in the title of the show… because it was quite clear that what was happening to us was definitely ‘beyond’ what we were trying to do. For this reason, one of the songs repeats: ‘what is the point of giving life like this? Where is the strength to say yes? Beyond us!'”

At the end of the show, Mother Clare thanked the novices who, although only five, were able with creativity, to put different talents into play. She also thanked them for the message they had left, rediscovering two figures linked to each other. “It is very beautiful, because perhaps we focus only on Sister Eusebia or the two Spanish martyrs (Carmen Moreno and Amparo Carbonell).  There are connections between them that make us see how the holiness of a Sister is linked to the holiness of all and how a Sister realizes her holiness with the holiness of those who have understood her, supported her, and really believed with that gaze of hope that accompanies our journey and our life”.

The Mother then asked to pray for the five of them and for the other Novices of the 2nd year of the Novitiate of Castelgandolfo called to the stage, who will make their First Profession in August.

Upon leaving the theater, the Novitiate Community offered everyone present a taste of the coffee liqueur made following the famous recipe, with this wish:

“We hope that you will be able to recognize in your daily life, which flows sometimes so hectically, small signs of the ‘extraordinary’ that remind us that, even if the good we can do is just a little, it never stops at us, but is taken and multiplied… and so we learn from Sister Eusebia and Sister Carmen to put the feast of the heart in everything we do, to always put a drop of liquor in the coffee… beyond us!”

Photos: Flickr FMA


  1. parabens queridas Noviças pelo spetaculo tão ricos e profundo da vida das nossas querida Ir Eusebia e Ir Carmem.
    Sou tambem eu muito devota e rezo todos os dias a oração a ir Eusebia.
    Obrigada per demostrar tanto carinho e aprofundar a vida desta duas FMA


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.