Belmonte (Rome), February 12 and 13, 2024 – A meeting to deepen Schoenstatt’s spirituality and the organization of the Movement’s priestly column was held at the evocative International Schoenstatt Centre in Rome.

Participants in the meeting: Mgr Ignazio Sanna and Fr Marcelo Cervi, from Schoenstatt Diocesan Priests Institute; Fr Facundo Bernabei and Fr Beltran Gomez, from the Schoenstatt Fathers Institute; Fr Siméon Rwasa, a Burundian who serves in the Diocese of San Miniato in Tuscany, Italy; Fr Ilario, Congolese who serves in the Diocese of Volterra, in Tuscany; Fr Giuseppe Gradino, from Torretta, Archdiocese of Monreale, in Sicily; and Fr Valentino Menegatti, Archdiocese of Ferrara-Comacchio.

Priests welcomed into the Schoenstatt Family

Due to pastoral and university commitments, many priests could not be in the meeting, which began on Monday, 12 February with a welcome and greeting from H.E. Mgr Ignazio Sanna and Sr. M. Júlia de Almeida.

Father Valentino introduced the participants, sharing his experiences and expectations. Father Facundo Bernabei presented the Schoenstatt Movement, explaining its history and structure. At 6pm, the Holy Mass with Vespers, presided over by Bishop Sanna, was celebrated in the Shrine.

After dinner, Mgr Sanna gave a talk on “Schoenstatt: a proposal of spirituality for diocesan priests”.

 The Priests’ League emerges

The following morning, 13 February, the participants went on pilgrimage to “Cor Ecclesiae” Shrine, where they were welcomed by Sisters of Mary community. Sr. M. Julie Brcar presented the history and mission of the Shrine.

Father Beltran Gomez presided at Holy Mass and, finally, Father Marcelo mediated the discussion on the possibility of creating a League of Priests.

The meeting was a spiritual enrichment moment and sharing among the priests and, at the end, the participants decided to start a League of Schoenstatt Diocesan Priests in Italy.

The decision brings great joy to the entire Schoenstatt Family, which sees in this new circle of priests an open door to take the Schoenstatt mission ever deeper into the heart of the Church.