Xaverian Missionaries – Provincial House
12 Helene Court – Wayne, NJ 07470
Fr. Mark’s Easter Message
To love implies a decision, a choice
Jesus chose to love you and me and every living being “to the end.”
His disciples, too, chose to follow in his footsteps, with their ups and downs.
Today, you and I are also called to make choices that foster unity, love, peace and harmony, so to “make of the world one family.”
As did Marie, some years back, who lived in Beirut, Lebanon, during the war.
She was 17 when she was kidnapped by a group of fanatics who asked her to publicly deny her faith in Jesus. When she replied, “I was born a Catholic and I want to die as such,” they shot her various times that the bullets left like a cross on her chest.
She miraculously survived and since that unforgettable day, she has been in a wheelchair, living in a veterans’ hospital, writing and painting with her mouth.
She never related how she ended up in that wheelchair and in such a condition. She never complained either.
Some years ago a journalist interviewed her and asked her the following questions:
“If you were to meet the person who hurt you so badly, would you be able to identify him?” She answered positively.
“And what would you do? Would you forgive him? Were you in any way brainwashed by those who kidnapped you?” asked the journalist.
And Marie, with a big smile, replied, “I guess Jesus now wants me in these conditions so that I may live and learn how to love as he did. He was given a chair, a throne, much tougher than mine: the cross.
And if there was any brainwashing, then Jesus did it to me, by using the technique and the strategy of love.”
A tragic experience in the life of a young adult… And yet, it speaks of resurrection and new life when we choose to follow the Lord of Life. He didn’t hesitate to give all of himself out of love for us…We are called to respond to that love by “making of the world one family,” reaching out to others, promoting communion, reconciliation, and the common good.
With deep gratitude from all of us, Xaverian Missionaries in the USA and the world over, for your daily prayers, your witness of life, your faithful and generous love for our Missions over the years, we wish a VERY BLESSED, AND GRACE-FILLED EASTER and Easter Season TO YOU ALL AND YOUR LOVED ONES! May the Risen Lord reward you many times over.
Fr. Mark Marangone, s.x.
Cosuma in Mexico
From January 6 – 13 – 2019, the
Fr. Mark writes:
We started our COSUMA meeting in Zapopan (near Guadalajara), Mexico, with two representatives from each of our countries in the Americas to plan our common journey ahead regarding our Mission today and tomorrow. We come from Brazil, Colombia, Mexico, the USA, and from Rome our Superior General and two of his Councillors. In the picture, all 13 of us were present and concelebrated Mass at the nearby parish “Nuestra Señora de Altamira” Parish, Zapopan on the feast of the Epiphany, Jan. 6, together with the pastor, in the center on my right one step up.
Retreat with Fr. Michael
Fr. Michael Davitti s.x. will be giving a retreat on Dialogue between Christianity and Buddhism, comparing the teachings of Meister Eckhart and the Buddha, on February 2, 2019 in Elizabeth NJ. Please call the Provincial House for more information.
General Direction Counselors Visit the US
Frs. Eugenio Pulcini and Fabien Kalehezo, SX, members of our General Council in Rome were with us in the USA from June 4 through the 17, 2018. It’s the first time they have come this way since their election (for Fr. Fabien, from the Democratic Republic of Congo, who served in the Philippines) and re-election (for Fr. Eugenio, from Italy, who served in Mexico and the Philippines) in August 2017 during our XVII General Chapter (Assembly).
They spent a few days in each of our Communities where they met with confreres and staff members and joined our Provincial Council Meeting in Franklin and even found some time for sightseeing. We appreciate the time they took with us and their interest in our activities, outreach and ministries. See a slide show of their visit here.
Fr. Frank Grappoli SX returned from Italy with an “Easter Basket” of images and memories. Enjoy! These two photos are of a young Fr. Frank in the 1970’s.
The Berceto Banquet
Fr. Mark Marangone SX attended the 55th and sadly final Bercetese celebration of its ties to the Xaverian Missionaries and St. Guido M. Conforti. See more pictures at www.bergotto. com. The Xaverian Missionaries express their never-ending gratitude to the Berceto Foundation for over half a century of service!
Xaverian Missionaries US Province Statement on Islamophobia and the Executive Order on Refugees
Jesus replied, “…you shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength.’ The second is this: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ No other commandment is greater than these” (Mark 12:30-31).
The United States Province of the Xaverian Missionaries adds its voice to the chorus of religious and secular organizations that object to the executive orders banning refugees and immigrants from Muslim countries to this country and condemns the Islamophobia gripping this nation.
Jesus himself referred to loving God and one’s neighbor as the greatest of the commandments. They are the core of Christian teaching. Loving one’s neighbor is also the core of the Golden Rule, which is found in every religion and culture on this planet. “So whatever you wish that others would do to you, do also to them, for this is the Law and the Prophets” (Matthew 7:12).
By banning refugees and immigrants from predominantly Muslim countries and inciting Islamophobia, America has violated the Golden Rule itself. We should be caring for those who are fleeing from conflict and strife, not turning them away. We should be welcoming those who wish become part of the mosaic that is our country, not stigmatizing them. We should be contributing to a world of justice, peace, and compassion, not to a climate of fear and hatred.
This country was founded on the principles of tolerance and acceptance. It grew and prospered due in no small part to the contributions of immigrants from around the world. Closing our doors and building walls will only result in diminishing not only our economic and commercial prosperity, but more importantly, our moral and ethical principles and aspirations. In short: America risks losing its own soul.
Xaverian Missionaries serve in twenty countries around the world. We have seen first-hand the hardship and devastation caused by sectarianism, economic deprivation, conflict, and war. In the past America seemed to be a beacon of light to peoples struggling to achieve “liberty and justice for all.” Now the light is dimmed and is in danger of being extinguished.
We strongly urge the new Administration to consider the consequences of its actions. We hope that all people will once again be welcomed into this country, especially those who are in most need. We hope that those who react out of fear will educate themselves on the true teachings of Islam, and not be influenced by lies and propaganda that turn people against each other for political gains. As a religious community, we remember the words of Jesus: “I was a stranger and you welcomed me…. What you do for the least of these, you do for me” (Matthew 25:31-46).
COMMON GROUND: Conference of Dialogue Between Atheists and Religious Believers
The Xaverian Missionaries and the American Humanist Association organized a special conference of dialogue which brought together religious believers, secular humanists, and nonbelievers in conversation to gain perspective on each other’s ways of seeing the world while embracing commonalities in our human experience that unite us for social change. We called it COMMON GROUND 2015.
Through four panel sessions and networking participants joined academics and leaders from national and local organizations to discuss views on finding meaning in life, ethics and values, and how to collaborate for social action.
We believe that there is a lot of common ground between atheists, humanists, and religious believers on ethics, community, and hope.
Our next “Atheist/Theist Meetup” will be on Sunday, November 25, 2018, at 3:00 p.m. at 12 Helene Court, Wayne NJ. Join us here.