EUROPE/ITALY - Scalabrinian Missionaries: 125 years at the service of migrants, a very current charism

Monday, 26 October 2020 missionary institutes   emigration   nuns  

Piacenza (Agenzia Fides) - The Missionary Sisters of Saint Charles Borromeo, also known as "Scalabrinians", are celebrating their 125th anniversary. Since that 25 October 1895 they have been the "migrant nuns". "This will be a special Jubilee this year, in the midst of the Covid-19 pandemic", underlines the note sent to Agenzia Fides by the General Curia of the religious. For this reason, the missionary communities present in 27 countries of the world have organized themselves through online events and moments of meditation and prayer. The initiatives (which will last for a whole year) started from Piacenza, where yesterday, Sunday 25 October, a Eucharistic celebration was held in the Cathedral presided over by Mgr. Luigi Chiesa, Adriano Cevolotto, vicar of the Bishop of Piacenza, in the same place where the mortal remains of the founder are kept, Blessed Giovanni Battista Scalabrini.
On 25 October 125 years ago, in the presence of the co-founder, Venerable Father Giuseppe Marchetti, four pioneer nuns, Blessed Mother Assunta Marchetti (co-founder) Carolina Marchetti, Angela Larini and Maria Franceschini, professed their first vows. "The appeal that Pope Francis addressed to us still echoes strongly in our hearts, saying 'I encourage you to put your charism ever more at the service of the Church', an expression that nourishes historical memory, not only remaining in this celebration, but living in the heart of migrations, 'not only as a memory of the past, but as a prophecy for the future', paying attention to the challenges of our time, following Jesus Christ, 'always on the way' towards migrants and refugees"- affirmed Sister Neusa de Fatima Mariano, Superior General of the Scalabrinians -."In the grace of this jubilee time, we want to continue the path confirmed in faith and hope, walking humbly with our God".
"The face of Jesus Christ is present in the many migrants who, in the world, flee or take refuge. It is a suffering face, but full of hope - continues Sister Neusa - Scalabrinian women have always welcomed with open arms, in the deep spirit of this Jesus who always asked to open hearts and to look at the world with pure eyes. We have been doing this for 125 years and we will continue to do so, with the same passion as our first sisters, in obedience to the evangelical mandate - I was a stranger and you welcomed me" . (SL) (Agenzia Fides, 26/10/2020)