Blessed Mary of the Crucified Jesus gathers her Carmelites
EMMAUS – Wednesday, May 2, the Patriarch presided over the inaugural Mass of the meeting of Carmelites, gathered in Emmaus, around the Palestinian Blessed Mary of Jesus Crucified. At the end of the celebration, Patriarch Twal gave a conference on the Blessed Carmelite.
From May 2 – 8, some thirty religious of the four Carmels of the Holy Land (Jerusalem, Bethlehem, Nazareth and Haifa) met for their formation meeting. This year they have chosen to live it around the life of Blessed Mariam Baouardy, known by the name of Mary of Jesus Crucified. The session started at Emmaus-Nicopolis, the place that Jesus in person, in 1878, indicated to Sister Mariam as the Emmaus of the Gospel.
In the homily, the Patriarch recalled how Blessed Mariam was “the daughter of the Holy Land”. “The Land and its hills – he said – were in her and in her inspirations and illuminations, she has discovered “the whole depth of the spiritual message of the Holy Places“. Patriarch Twal, based on the example of Sister Mariam, invited everyone to “touch these places, to smell the fragrance, to be very close to them, to be so familiar… to become ourselves another Holy Land in which Jesus can be born, grow up and act”.
Patriarch Twal then offered the Carmelite sisters a presentation entitled: “Mariam and her Patriarch”. He described the special relationship of his predecessor Bishop Vincenzo Bracco with Blessed Mariam, describing their holy friendship: “the Patriarch was the spiritual director of Mariam, and Mariam was the spiritual support of the Patriarch”. And in conclusion: “in each of their paths are found real traces of holiness”.
“A friendly presence very close”
Sister Anne-Françoise, superior of the Carmel of Bethlehem and organizer of the session, testifies in turn to this holy friendship with Blessed Mariam: “Sister Mariam is like a friend who helps us and shows us the way of the Gospel. She relates that she can bring to each one something, thanks to her history”. It is without doubt for this reason that the Carmelites have wanted to live this occasion around the Blessed Palestinian. She “often in ecstasy… lived naturally on earth and in heaven”. “Nothing could stop her excess of love” states Sister Anne-Françoise again. Love mixed with great delicacy from her youth as the little Teresa: “the one represents the way of simplicity and the other, with her visions, the way of the extraordinary, but both teach us the Gospel”.
Every day of the session of the Carmelites’ aggiornamento was characterized by lectures concerning Blessed Mariam. The lecture by Bishop Giacinto-Boulos Marcuzzo, given on Monday May 7, entitled: “Mariam and the local Church, in relation to the last Synod” which demonstrates the great relevance of Blessed Mariam should be accented.
Amélie de La Hougue