Close this search box.

Apostolic Movement

Stefan Keznickl: Father Kentenich saw and worked on the divine spark in every human being

By: Susi Mitter

Stefan Keznickl met Father Kentenich 30 years ago through other Schoenstatters. At the time, he was 27 years old. He describes these first encounters as follows: “This is what I had been looking for always: something authentic, original, with a seal of holiness. To live Christianity in the sense of the original Christianity. That is what Schoenstatt embodied for me. That is why I am still here with the same enthusiasm.”

Stefan traveled 20 years later to Milwaukee with a group of Schoenstatters and met with Father Kentenich in a new and deeper way: “There were women, men, parents, young people then, now grown men of my age, who knew him. And these people talked about Father Kentenich’s intense paternity. They themselves embodied it in their personal existence. Some of them attended his “school” for years and talked about it with such authenticity, with a twinkle in their eyes, even though Father Kentenich had been dead for 20 or 30 years. I have never experienced anything like that.”

Stefan Keznickl is convinced that anyone today can get to know Father Kentenich personally and be guided by him: “There are many ways to get to know Father Kentenich. Come to a Schoenstatt shrine, listen to a talk, read a biography. There are also biographies that are not from Schoenstatt which are very well written, with an outside perspective. Have a cup of coffee with me. I could talk about Father Kentenich for hours because he energizes me. Something which is very nice is talking to elderly Sisters of Mary who knew him personally. When you talk to a sister who is 80 or 90 years old, you see the light in her eyes when she talks about him and that is the best thing that can happen to you. It’s such a profound experience!”

Stefan Keznickl also comments on the accusations currently being thrown at Father Kentenich: “I was in the Men’s Federation in Switzerland, I spent a lot of time in Germany, I am Austrian, I spent a lot of time in the United States and a lot of time in Chile. All that I have experienced in the Schoenstatt Movement, no matter in which community, has nothing to do with this Kentenich who disables people. On the contrary, he led everyone I met to the absolute freedom of the children of God. God has said yes to us, and it is a matter of working with his gift, his talent, his grace, whatever this divine spark is called”.



with your loved ones

Related articles that may interest you