– Part Two –
Sunday, July 9, 2023, dawned with rain, but this did not dampen the hearts of the visiting pilgrims, who stayed at our Retreat House from New York, Miami, and Costa Rica. Many pilgrims from the surrounding area arrived desiring to be the first to congratulate the Blessed Mother on this great Jubilee feast day. Childlike hearts embraced their Mother and Queen in a silent but effusive thank you.
Thank you! What would have become of us without you, without your maternal care!
By 9:30 a.m., many of the pilgrims coming from the surrounding villages had already arrived, so, Sr. M. Georgina and two women, Máxima and Mercedes, were the two speakers on stage, who narrated the history of the shrine.
The Victoria Patris Queen descended from her throne
The Mother Thrice Admirable image from the shrine went out to meet her children who came from far and near to celebrate her 50 years of her presence among us.
This was a symbolic visit to her entire kingdom. Representatives of the different districts of the Couples League Branch, Mothers and Ladies, Schoenstatt Young Women and the Schoenstatt Young Men carried their flags. To the rhythm of drums and trumpet our Queen was accompanied in a procession, which began at the Joseph Engling Memorial by the entrance of the property and stopped at different stations: the Father Memorial, the Immaculata’s Memorial Garden at our Sisters’ cemetery, Sister M. Emilie’s Memorial, and at the lobby in front of the shrine.
At each station, a reflection on the graces of the shrine was made: the Grace of Home, the Grace of Inner Transformation, the Grace of Apostolic Mission, and the Grace of Victoria Patris. At the end of the procession surrounded by all the flags, the image of our Victoria Patris Queen greeted and blessed her people while the notes of our National Anthem were intoned. In the end, the people went to the lobby, and to the rhythm of a jubilee song intoned by Elba and her group (the Cantina) hands up, everyone began to dance joyfully.
Thank you, Mother
Lunch was donated and served by the government’s economic dining rooms. During the meal lively entertainment included a Mariachi band, testimonies from members of the Schoenstatt Family of the founding generation, songs, a presentation of an acrostic with the words ‘THANK YOU, MOTHER’, as well as dances presented by the Schoenstatt Young Women and the students from the Polytechnic JPII Dance Group.
Jubilee Holy Mass
At 2:20 pm, the festive program continued with the central and solemn part of the day, the jubilee Holy Mass. The mass can be seen at the following link:
The Metropolitan Archbishop, H.E.R. Monsignor Francisco Ozoria, was the main celebrant accompanied by the Auxiliary Bishop, H.E.R. Monsignor José Amable, Vicar of the pastoral zone to which our Parish of La Victoria belongs, Fr. José Luis Correa, Schoenstatt Father, Continental Coordinator of the Movement for Latin America, Fr. Marcelino from the Priests’ Federation, and other Diocesan priests formed a total of 11 presbyters.
Hold the Scepter
The choir, with its special songs for the occasion, added solemnity to the liturgical act of thanksgiving par excellence, the Holy Mass. Before and as part of the offertory, the scepter was offered to the Blessed Mother as a special jubilee gift from the entire Dominican Schoenstatt Family. H.R.H. Monsignor Ozoria, prayed the prayer for the presentation of the scepter and Father Marcelino placed the scepter in the hands of the Queen by attaching it to the frame of the picture. During this solemn moment, the Sisters sang the song “Hold the Scepter in Your Hands”.
In his homily, the Archbishop highlighted the blessing that this shrine has been for the entire Dominican Church, especially for the Archdiocesan Church. Commenting on the readings of the Mass, he pointed out how the Lord uses the small things to manifest his glory. The almighty King chooses a donkey for his triumphal entry into Jerusalem and to enter into our human reality he makes use of the little servant of Nazareth, Mary. From this little shrine, from this school of Mary, the Lord comes again to bless his people, to show us his love and mercy.
Words of gratitude
Monsignor Ozoria also expressed his gratitude to the entire Schoenstatt Movement, especially to the Schoenstatt Sisters of Mary for their service to the Church.
Monsignor Amable also expressed his gratitude for having the Schoenstatt Shrine in his Vicariate and for the service of the Sisters, and the welcome they give to the groups of the Vicariate when they have used the place for their activities.
Father José Luis Correa also gave his greetings and expressed his joy and gratitude for having participated in the 50th jubilee celebrations of our Victoria Patris Shrine.
After the final blessing, the bishops entered the shrine to thank the Blessed Mother and also took pictures for souvenirs. Then, they went to Casa Ita Pater for a snack. They were followed by many who wanted to greet the bishops and express their gratitude for their presence.
It was a happy and very moving ending, when the pilgrims, who came from far away wanted to say goodbye to the Blessed Mother before boarding their buses to return to their homes. The choir ‘the Cantina’ animated this moment with the jubilee songs as a sign of farewell and reiterated gratitude to the Victoria Patris Queen and the Triune God.
Victory of the Father
Everything was a great victory interceded for us by of our Father and Founder. He accompanied us in the preparation and realization of these jubilee celebrations. The jubilee was inspired by his words:
To Her we owe everything!
Everything, everything: the Victoria Patris Shrine, our houses, the currents of life that have moved the hearts of all those who have consecrated themselves to Her in the covenant of love during the past 50 years. We owe her everything. We have been able to overcome many human and economic limitations with her help.
Hand in hand with our father and founder, Father Joseph Kentenich, and in faithfulness to his great mission, the Blessed Mother’s mission from her shrine for the Victory of the Father, we repeat with our founder: