Schoenstatt Girls Youth Groups in Burundi
during the Pandemic
I am the Schoenstatt Sister of Mary responsible for the Schoenstatt Girls Youth in Burundi, Central Africa. World-wide we find ourselves in a time not easy to do our apostolate because the coronavirus pandemic restricts us. Therefore, this past year I prayed more intensively to Father Joseph Kentenich, founder of the Schoenstatt Movement, before I began work with the Schoenstatt Girls Youth. I asked him to help us have visits and workshops for the girls so they would not lose the spirit of Schoenstatt.
The good behavior of others
I am happy that all workshops and visits were successful. None of the girls with whom I met had a problem regarding Covid. The Mother of God did as she promised in the Founding Document of Schoenstatt on October 18, 1914: “I will draw the hearts of the youth to myself and educate them to be useful instruments in my hand.” In addition, during the past year the Blessed Virgin Mary led many young people into our Schoenstatt Youth. When one asks the youth what motivated them to join the Schoenstatt Movement, they say that they found there what is essential, above all self education, education regarding the life of the Blessed Mother, and the good behavior of those who belong to the Schoenstatt Movement.
Ridiculed and yet faithful
Our ideal, our guiding star in everyday life is: “Let us be faithful children of the MTA.
” We strive to be like the Blessed Mother,
to grow in faith and love because that is the foundation for loyalty. Many youth testify that Father Kentenich helps them from heaven in their daily life. They like to pray the novena to him. One student who is also the leader of the Schoenstatt Movement at her school gave this testimony. She said that before a test, she and others who also belong to Schoenstatt began to pray a novena asking our father and founder for help so that they would pass the exam well. Others, who do not belong to Schoenstatt ridiculed them: “You are not normal; instead of studying, you your waste time praying. We will see if this Father works miracles.” Despite this ridicule the girls remianed loyal to Father Kentenich and they all passed the exam. The others were astonished about their loyalty to Father Kentenich and to prayer.
Over 1,000 young women participated in a workshop
Despite the pandemic, the Mother of God drew many young people from Burundi into the ocmmunity of the Schoenstatt Girls Youth. Two hundred eighty-eight young women sealed the covenant of love with the Three Times Admirable Mother of Schoenstatt. Three hundred sixty-nine renewed the covenant of love. One thousand, one hundred and fourty-eight young women participated in the workshops that we held in various dioceses. Fifteen of the young women established a home shrine in their home giving the Blessed Mother a place in their home. The Schoenstatt Movement has spread to every diocese of Burundi and to almost all of the parishes. Currently we have 878 Schoenstatt Girls Youth groups and 326 children’s groups. I would like to sincerely thank everyone who supports the Schoenstatt Movement in Burundi with their prayers!