Torre Annunziata (Italy). The FMA encounter for the 25th and 50th anniversary of religious Profession took place at the Spirituality House “Villa Tiberias” in Torre Annunziata in Our Lady of Good Counsel Province (IMR). It was a good opportunity to enjoy the intimacy of prayer, recollection, and a most exquisite fraternity, of enjoying every detail of this day and a half of spirituality. There were three moments that embellished this experience: the lectio of Fr. Alessandro Valentino, the Eucharistic Celebration at the Shrine of Our Lady of the Rosary in Pompeii, and the study of the Constitutions with the provincial Sr. Mara Tagliaferri.
Fr. Alessandro immersed us in a whole new reading of the book of Ruth, a narrative jewel and a theological discovery: the feminine Gospel, in whose light it reconsidered its own history, the path in the fidelity of a friendship, looking at two splendid women Naomi and Ruth, the first who lives bitterness with sweetness, who knows the pain of exile in a foreign land, where she experiences God as the whole of life and receives as a gift the unexpected fertility of Ruth. A story of friendship between Ruth and Noemi concentrated in the verses that we know of extraordinary emotion: ” Wherever you go I will go, wherever you lodge I will lodge. Your people shall be my people and your God, my God. Where you die I will die, and there be buried. May the LORD do thus to me, and more, if even death separates me from you!” (Ruth 1: 16-18). Thanks to this insistence Naomi understands what a gift Ruth was for her life and so they leave together for their journey.
At the Eucharistic celebration in Pompeii at the Shrine of Our Lady of the Rosary, we had the opportunity to be close to the altar and enjoy the intimacy that privileges responsibility for an even more conscious gift.
Sr. Mara in her talk deepened the Constitutions, rereading some articles in the light of Covenant terms, in order to appreciate their role as a compass in our lives, to taste their value as the Gospel translated into Salesian daily life.
It was a small but significant pause in preparation for this new vocational stage which is 25 and 50 years of religious profession.