Author Archives: Sr.Isabel

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Missionaries’ Pilgrimage Day in Texas

by  Carlos Cantú, Rockport, TX

The Schoenstatt Rosary Campaign sponsors two special days each year at the Confidentia Shrine in Rockport, Texas for Missionaries and those who receive the Pilgrim MTA in their homes.  These two days take place in November and March.  The most recent one took place on March 12, 2017.  On these days, new missionaries are commissioned, re-commissioning takes place for those renewing their commitment for another year, and it is also a day for those who have been prepared to seal their Covenant of Love.

Although the day was cool and rainy, it did not deter the participation of approximately 200 pilgrims.  The day began with serenading the Blessed Mother at the Shrine and receiving a heartfelt welcome as well.  Afterwards, everyone gathered in the auditorium for a talk.  Presiding at both the talk and the Holy Mass was Schoenstatt Father, Fr. Johnson Nelissery.  Father’s talk was focused on the Texas motto, MISSIONARIES OF MARY, BUILDING COVENANT CULTURE.  Father also emphasized the meaning of commissioning and re-commissioning.

156 Pilgrim MTA’s graced a side altar.  122 were being re-commissioned to continue on their journey in the great visitation for another year, and 34 were initiating their journey for the first time.

After lunch, everyone gathered anew in the auditorium for the recitation of the Rosary.  After the Rosary, a missionary  gave a moving testimony on how Our Mother Thrice Admirable, Queen and Victress of Schoenstatt  had come to the aid of her family.  In summary, her testimony went something like this:  Her husband was in the process of securing his legal and permanent residency in the United States.  As part of the lengthy process, he would have to travel to the Consulate in Ciudad Juárez, Mexico.  Before beginning the journey, their parish priest, who is devoted to our MTA, prayed with them and entrusted the whole matter to Our Blessed Mother.  They had to travel to Monterrey, Mexico and there board a plane for Ciudad Juárez.  Everything was proceeding normally and they were praying fervently to Our Blessed Mother.  They followed all the steps in the process: go here, go there, sign here, now do this, come back in an hour, etc.  Time was running out and they had to board their plane at 8:00 PM.  It was almost 6:00 PM and the husband tells his wife that she should go on so they would not lose both plane fares, but she would not do so.  She reminded him that they had entrusted the matter to Blessed Mother and She would take care, so she went to a corner and continued to pray fervently.  There was a long line ahead of her husband, there was only one clerk, and only 50 resident documents would be issued that day.  It looked hopeless, when suddenly another clerk appeared, he took the stack of applications and flipped them over, and he called the first name which originally was at the bottom of the pile and it was that of her husband.  Blessed Mother had taken perfect care, She had answered their prayers, and the gentleman had received the longed for documentation which now made him a legal and permanent resident of the United States.  With hearts filled with gratitude, they were able to board their plane with plenty of time.  A round of applause and cheering confirmed what our Father and Founder always said, “She will work miracles!”  It is important to note that on March 12, 2017, this missionary who gave this testimony was re-commissioned for another year, received her second Pilgrim MTA which would visit another 10 families,  and  she sealed her Covenant of Love.

Holy Mass now began with many grateful and joyful hearts.  Immediately after the homily, a beautiful floral crown was brought up in solemn procession.  As Blessed Mother received the crown, the following prayer was recited in both English and Spanish:

“Dear Mother Thrice Admirable, Queen and Victress of Schoenstatt,

as Queen of the Schoenstatt Rosary Campaign, we thank you with childlike gratitude and confidence for the graces you bestown on us your joyful instruments.

Inspired by the Holy Spirit and as Missionaries of Mary, we want to share the love of the Blessed Mother and extend the mission of the Rosary Campaign, growing in love, unity and sanctity in our daily life.

As we follow in the footsteps of Joao Pozzobon, not knowing the destination and the way in these challenging times, let us evangelize, serve and bring Christ into the culture.

In this spirit we crown you: “Queen of Covenant Culture.”

Immediately following Holy Mass, 12 persons who would be sealing their Covenat of Love in the Confidentia Shrine led the procession to the Shrine.  Carlos and Elizabeth Cantú had prepared the 12 persons from the Diocese of Brownsville for their Covenant of Love and assisted Father Johnson with the ritual.  With great joy and gratitude, they received their covenant medals and signed the Covenant Book.

It was a day of many graces and blessings for all.


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Taller de Formación para Misisoneros

Misioneros de Winnipeg, Canada, en la parroquia Nuestra Señora de la Asunción, se reúnen el 21 de enero para ofrecer un día de taller y formación. Allí han de participar todos aquellos que reciben la imagen de la Virgen Peregrina de Schoenstatt, y por supuesto, todos los misioneros que portan la imagen a distintos lugares.

Los Patiño, de Paraguay, y los Larrea, de Ecuador, buenos conocedores de Schoenstatt, dirigiran una reflexión en torno a la historia de Schoenstatt, sus cuatro hitos, y cómo nos debemos dejar inspirar por estas fechas y estos eventos.

Su fuente de inspiración es la novena del Padre Kentenich que resume su vida y su obra.

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Be Genuine, Presume Nothing, Bring Christ and Mary

By Curtis Kneblik
In reaching out to others it is best to be authentic and real.  I mean, don’t put on a holy atmosphere as if you had something they don’t have. It’s best to just be yourself!  We are all sons and daughters of the Father, we are already special. Being a missionary of the Pilgrim Shrine doesn’t make us any more special, it doesn’t raise our dignity higher than we already are, sons and daughters of the Heavenly Father.  Therefore, be yourself, be a son, be a daughter, share your love for Mary and Jesus through your gestures, your words, your simple faith.
I like holy cards, and I use them quite a bit.  I wish I had an MTA with the Lord’s Prayer on the back… The Holy Card is an easy way to share the image with someone and I allow the picture to do the work.  I become small and even make light of my business card.  I say, “I don’t have a business card but I hand out these pictures of Jesus.”  I leave it at that. I let them take the next step if they want to comment or ask a question.  We don’t have to teach them the catechism, but allow Mary to do the work through her picture.
Offer the picture to someone at church and say,  “have you seen this picture of Mary, isn’t she beautiful?”  then just wait and see where the conversation goes.  Our goal is not proselytizing but sharing the image.
Why do you approach them?  Because I love the Blessed Mother and I want to share them with others.  Presume nothing.  Someone may be needing a lift that day and you offer a picture.  Let the Spirit guide you…look for signs.  “Be on the lookout” it says in one of the evangelization documents.  We are to be on the lookout for opportunities to encounter, and authentically encounter, not proselytize.
Are you genuinely kind and interested in the person or just trying to pass out MTA cards or shrines?  Think about your encounters with people and then think how you would hand out the card with the image of Christ and Mary, without feeling awkward.  If you feel awkward then they will feel awkward. How would you want to be approached? That could also be a guide into how you approach others.
I have felt intimidated by people who have an agenda and are trying to sell me on their viewpoint.  People generally don’t like salesman – so don’t be one!  Be genuine, be caring, and share out of love with NO preconceived expectations on how they are to respond.  Some will respond in a grateful manner, some will be suspicious, some will reject it out right.   BE OPEN TO LISTENING INSTEAD OF TALKING!  People want to be listened to more than being talked at.

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Reaching Out to Others, Bringing Christ and Mary

By Carol Mechler, IL

Reaching out to others with joy to proclaim the message of the Gospel, which we live and are a witness of, is the challenge and duty given us, the laity, in this new time of evangelization for the Church.  Thankfully, we have our Blessed Mother Thrice Admirable, Queen and Victress of Schoenstatt and Queen of the Three Graces on the Move to help us achieve this challenge, this duty.

Our Pilgrim MTA’s task and mission from the Schoenstatt Shrine is to continually bring Jesus, her Son, anew to the world.  She wants to conquer the hearts of many who long to be close to God in their daily lives.  She brings the light and hope of the Lord into the lives of those who work with and receive her.  She intercedes the Three Graces of the Shrine to support religious and moral renewal of individuals, families, and family life.  Our Blessed Mother needs willing and capable instruments to help her achieve her task and mission.

Our MTA calls us and gives us a home in the Shrine where she forms us to be her willing and capable instruments, then sends us out with her and Jesus through her Pictures of Grace with a spirit of Marian Covenant Love so that many others may know all about the blessings awaiting them in the Shrine.  This is the work of the Schoenstatt Pilgrim Mother, an Apostolate of Evangelization and Renewal within the Catholic Church.  It is for us, the laity, to help us reach out to others and share the Good News of the Gospel.  We are blessed to have such a powerful tool to use to touch peoples’ lives, to bring Christ and Mary to homes and parishes, everywhere where they are needed.

Dear Blessed Mother Thrice Admirable, Queen and Victress of Schoenstatt and Queen of the Three Graces on the Move, visit us your children.  Walk among us, comfort us, care for us, and heal our hearts with your motherly love.  Bring Jesus into our homes our Domestic Church, into the homes of our dear ones who are sick, into our hospitals and nursing homes, everywhere where you and Jesus are needed.  Distribute the Three Pilgrimage Graces of the Shrine to warm our cold hearts, to renew us in our faith, and to deepen our personal love for Jesus your Son.  With the Three Pilgrimage Graces, educate us and form us into the New Persons in the New Community.  Intercede for us that the wide halls of the holy Church be filled again to the praise and glory of God the Father, God the Son, and God the Holy Spirit.  Amen.   


“Take this picture of the Blessed Mother and give it a place of honor in your home.  Then your home will become a little shrine in which the picture of grace will mediate many graces, create a holy family atmosphere, and form holy family members.”

Father Joseph Kentenich, Founder of Schoenstatt


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Before Closing the Year 2016

Before closing the year 2016 missionaries from Atltanta, Georgia, gathered to renew their commitment, to crown the images of the Pilgrim Mother, and send out two new missionaries, for the new year 2017.

These missionaries wish everyone a blessed year 2017, and send us a quote from Father Kentenich:

“Remain loyally united, and do not forget: ‘Love conquers everything!'”

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Arizona’s Grand Crowning

By Sally LeRoy


In Arizona we were blessed to celebrate the crowning of the Queen of the Three Graces on Saturday, November 19, 2016. This is also the birthday of Father Joseph Kentenich, the founder of Schoenstatt. The procession was lovely! The Holy Mass celebrated by Fr. John Ebbesmier, the Pastor of St. Joachim and St. Anne parish, was glorious.  He also officiated the crowning our Pilgrim Mother “Queen of the Three Graces on the Move!”

We completed our joyful morning by stating that we receive these when:  1) we, as missionaries take our Pilgrim Mothers to others, such as nursing homes, hospitals, people in need of her visit. When we do that, we all have the feeling of “being at home with her at our side.”  2) we let the Blessed Mother work and transform our hearts, that is, the grace of inner transformation, and 3) when we share the joy of Mary’s presence in our lives with others, that is the grace of apostolic fruitfulness.


We are grateful to Fr. John for saying “yes” to celebrating our special Holy Mass and for his meaningful homily.  A word of thanks also to all missionaries, for recognizing our gift and taking the Pilgrim Mother to those in need.  We are called to be witnesses in the world and go forth with her to those who are at our side.  Also, a word of gratitude to all those who helped, Barb, Steve and Jessica – whose music touched our hearts! To Mary Alvin, for doing the first reading, Jeremiah and Mark, who did an excellent job as altar servers. Thanks also to all the procession participants, each and everyone who took part in our celebration!!


Finally, we lifted a prayer for the repose of the soul of Deacon Bob Meyers. He was with the national convention last year at the crowning ceremony.


Following the Mass, approximately 20 of us met at Mercer’s Restaurant for fellowship, fun and food.



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Covenants and Crowning


In preparation for the crowning, the missionaries of upstate New York, in Buffalo, renewed their covenant of love. For many years these faithful missionaries have been spreading the love for Christ and Mary, through the Pilgrim Mother.



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Mary was crowned in the Bronx, too.

By Millie Cornelio

On Friday, October 21, 2016, the families of St. Simon Stock Parish, in the Bronx, united to crown the Pilgrim MTA shrines. Esmeralda Ramos with the Daughters of Mary began the celebration with the rosary, leading the families into the Eucharistic Celebration. The Holy Mass was offered in thanksgiving for the 102nd Anniversary of Schoenstatt origins and the covenant of love.

For a better understanding of the celebration I was invited for an explanation of Schoenstatt and of the crowning.

Meals & Refreshments were served together with the delicious MTA cake, a well-known in our community.

We thank Fr. Nelson Belizario for his constant support and love to the Mother Thrice Admirable and the Schoenstatt Family. We also thank Fr. Alvaro, the main celebrant. Many more thanks to all that made of this beautiful celebration another opportunity for the community to gather as one family and learn and experience the Schoenstatt living the covenant of love.

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El frío no los detuvo.

By SRC Office

El viento frío nos hizo pensar en la pureza de la Virgen, en la mañana del sábado, 22 de octubre. Nos reunimos en la ermita del la parroquia de San Andrés, en Clifton, diócesis de Arlington. Después del desayuno, una reflexión, canciones y anuncios, pasamos a la ermita para coronar nuestras imágenes y rezar por los cristianos perseguidos, por nuestro país, y por las muchas intenciones que traemos en nuestros corazones. Recordamos de manera especial a María Sazonov, quien fue un instrumento escogido para mantener esta ermita y para fortalecer la Campaña en el área de DC.


The cool windy air of Saturday, October 22 in the morning, gave a sense of purity and of the joy the Blessed Mother must have felt when looking upon all everyone offering her a crown and trusting in her power.

The missionaries of the DC area met in Virginia, at the Schoenstatt Wayside Shrine of St. Andrew’s Parish, in Clifton, Arlington diocese. Close to 25 missionaries gathered to crown over 40 images of the Pilgrim Mother. After breakfast, a reflection, songs, and some announcements, we went to the Wayside Shrine for the crowning ceremony. The brisk air did not keep us from honoring our Mother and Queen, and asking her to intercede for our country, the persecuted Christians around the world, and our many intentions. We called to mind in a very special way Maria Sazonov who cared for the Wayside Shrine with so much love in the past and who was very instrumental in strengthening the Rosary Campaign in the DC area. With great enthusiasm we sang and prayed, that the MTA will keep us as her instruments of the three graces.




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The experience in Bayou Region was beyond expectations.

By Joan Rodrigue

We crowned our Pilgrim MTAs and recommissioned our missionaries before the 10:00 AM Holy Mass on October 22, 2016. The Holy Mass was celebrated by Father Al Davidson at St. Joseph the Worker in Pierre Part, LA. Regional Coordinator, Joan Rodrigue began the ceremony with a brief overview of the history of the Schoenstatt Movement, the Schoenstatt Rosary Campaign, Father Joseph Kentenich, Blessed John Pozzobon in connection to the message of some words from Our Holy Father, Pope Francis. Special emphasis was placed on why we pray for the three graces, our world and our country. Immediately following, Father Al recommissioned the missionaries, we crowned Our Lady of the Three Graces on the Move, and celebrated the Year of Mercy. Approximately 110 members of the Bayou Region of the SRC were in attendance. The Bayou Region encompasses the parishes of Assumption, Ascension, Lafourche, and Terrebonne. To prepare for our crowning, many of us began tracking the number of rosaries said from May 1 – October 22 . We spiritually traveled from Brazil across America and then from Wisconsin to Assumption Parish. We needed a total of 6552 rosaries and we were able to exceed our goal.

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