We plan to put on the wall of Gethsemani, facing the suffering Christ, the instruments of torture which our Saviour visualised in his mind. No words exist, in any language, to describe the sufferings of Christ in his mind. The following photos show some of these torture instruments.
May 23, 2013
Good Friday 2013.
Every year the local people make a penetential pilgrimage on Good Friday visiting chapels and churches as they go. They begin gathering at 6.00 A.M and the march commences at about 6.30 For the last few years, the pilgrimage began at the Bible Garden behind our St. Teresa´s Home and ended at the parish Church of Christ the King, taking between 4 and 5 hours to complete it. This year it was decided to reverse it. As they walk, they sing hymns and recite prayers. The following are photos at the Calvary behind our Home. We thank God for the good weather on that day. See above photos for Good Friday.
We have had many visitors since Good Friday. Many brought presents for our residents which were much appreciated especially since our sources of income are in a decline for the day to day running of our three homes.
A volunteer from Ireland e-mailed the passport photo which I noted very clearly in my mind. When this volunteer arrives at the bus terminal in Oberá, I will know the person immediately especially as there will be a guitar involved.
When the coach arrived from Buenos Aires to Oberá, the passangerss alighted and I saw this person with a guitar. “Not our volunteer, wrong face and wrong colour hair” said I to myself.
Having waited for the best part of 30 minutes, I decided to ask the driver of the next bus. He said that there was no Irish person on board and that it was the last bus from the federal capital. I decided to walk around the bus terminal and within a few minutes spotted the same person with the guitar. I approached and said “Ciara? ”Yes” was the reply. I apologised for the delay in contacting her and explained why. The appearance of Ciara was anything but the likeness of the the passport photo.
Come Monday, 4th March, 2013, Ciara was with us in the St. Teresa of the Child Jesus Home and quickly settled down.
Apart from the usual general duties of volunteers, Ciara also entertained both residents and staff with her beautiful playing of her guitar. Not only that, but also gave great enjoyment to all with her playing of the thin whistle and her singing. To the delight of residents, Ciara sketched their faces and the sketches were put on the bedroom walls.
During our chatting, Ciara made known that she has a good knowledge of German, and also plays the fiddle, piano and piano accordian piano. Ciara played for us during the Mass and at the end sang.
On returning to ireland, Ciara intends to study traditional Irish music. All of us here wish her well for the future.
Never again will I trust passport photos.
God bless Ciara.
The following is a composition by Fr. Liam HayesSVD. Pope Francis 21st March, 2013 All of us in the Homes of the Holy Spirit and the St. Teresa of the Child Jesus, Oberá, and Our Lady of Lujan, Guaraní, wish Pope Francis “Ad multus annos’ in his service to the Universal Church.
For all of us here in the homes words are inadequate to describe our joy over the swift election of our Argentinean Cardinal, Archbishop of Buenos Aires Jorge Mario Bergogolio S.J., as Bishop of Rome.
His being the first Argentine and South American to be elected Pope has caused me to lose a number of nights sleep because I am so happy about it. The other day in Oberá, I met an Argentine Muslim who could not contain his gladness and delight. His reaction is typical of most Argentineans. It is a great boost for the morale of the country – similar to winning the World Cup.
My joy is even greater because of the calibre of this new Pope. The cardinals not alone elected a pope; they chose a man who brings God into the room. You cannot but notice his overwhelming concentration when at prayer or celebrating the Mass. Pope Francis inspires a strong awareness of the reality and presence of God. He is no plaster saint and he is not afraid when the need arises to be prophetic – a quality of his that was very much needed during his tenure as archbishop of Buenos Aires. Bergoglio’s large heart motivated him to do everything possible to improve conditions for those who cannot, even by the sweat of their brows, secure enough food or shelter for themselves or their children not only in South America but throughout the world. Cardinal Bergoglio spoke out on behalf of the poor and marginalized in our world who live in subhuman conditions. He constantly visited such areas in Buenos Aires. He was a frequent visitor to drug rehabilitation and Aids centres as well as visiting prisoners. Now, as Pope Francis, he is deeply committed to the Church’s service to and empowerment of the poor.
Pope Francis has been an influential figure in the Latin American church. He also made a huge impact on the lives of innumerable people as the lives of many individuals who shook addictions testify. He is a man who radiates hope. It is difficult to imagine or describe a more genuinely modest and self-depreciating man. Yet he is uncompromising about Gospel teaching.
He is the first Jesuit pope in the history of the Catholic Church. Here in the north-east of Argentina you find a number of ruins of the famous seventeenth and eighteenth century “Reducciones”. Those who have seen the film, “The Mission”, may recall that the Reducciones were experimental settlements set up by the Jesuits both to evangelise the Guarani people and to protect them from violence and greed of the European city dwellers. These heroic efforts are part of Pope Francis’s religious tradition.
Pontifex means bridge-builder. May our new Pope be a bridge between earth and heaven for millions of people.
Let us never forget to pray for Pope Francis and all of his intentions in our daily prayers and when attending the Mass.
On 28th March, we reported that Ramón Raberto was our first terminally ill resident.
About weeks ago, he was confined to his bed in our St.. Teresa of the Child Jesus Home.
We prayed with him and for him on a daily basis. Last week, the last week in March, Fr. Liam gave him the last rites. Since then, his breathing becaume very difficult for him. His family was contacted and came to visit him.
Last Tuesday, 2nd April, the family came again at about 3.45 pm I (Séamus) was with them for a brief moment. Ramón was struggling to live and I decided to personally inform Fr. Liam. Fr. was praying in the little oratory and, on being informed, came immediately to the bedside of Ramón. Fabricio, one of our very dedicated assistants, said that Ramón might have about 6 hours more with us. We prayed for Ramón.
At about 4.45 pm, Ramón left this world peacefully, having died a dignified death. After the funeral Mass yesterday, he was buried in the nearby cemetery.
Let us pray for his soul and for the souls of the faithful departed and also for his family.
Wishing all of our readers a very happy Easter.
From all our residents and staff.
On Friday, 1st February, 2013, assistants brought 45 year old Ramón Roberto to our St. Teresa of the Child Jesus Home.
Ramón is a widower with five children from his first marriage. Later he married for the second time and his second wife gave birth to three children. Unfortunately, for some reason we do not know, she left him.
Years later, he suffered an accident resulting in leaving him patsaplegic. He was living on his own in his own house. Although kind neigbours helped him, he had great difficulty in moving around his home. Eventually, he became very ill and was moved to the Soberbio hospital for it was decide to move him to the SAMIC hospital in Oberá.
For some considerable time, he never had any visitors, neither family, other relatives or friends.
Fr. Liam is the chaplain to the SAMIC and came across Ramón. Rámon, suffering from cancer and bed sores, begged Fr. Liam to take him to our home.
He was visited by staff members. A decision ws then taken that we should accommodate him.
Ramón, with the loving care of our staff, has become a lot more comfortable.
He is now in his permanent home. He will never leave us as he is our very first terminally ill resident.
March 2013. Some of our flowers in our Summer.
Progress is being made on our Bible Garden. At present, the construction of the Garden of Gethsemani continues.
We are trying to be practical with its construction taking into account how visitors can enter and leave it and at the same time make it as original as possible. The photos show how advanced we are.
A few weeks ago, we had the pleasure of having Global Alliance Secretariat Manager / PA to International Director at Leonard Cheshire Disability with us for a quick visit, namely Eleonora Catalli. She was very impressed with the three homes, the staff, and management. Eleonora was extremely happy with the care and love shown to the residents by our staff, their dedication, the manner in which each member dealt with awkard situations concerning individual residents. Eleonora was informed about the conditions in which our latest residents came and how they have since advanced healthwise and every otherwise.