From Easter Sunday until the Saturday of the Octave, by the grace of God, we had the visit of the Superior General of the Institute, Fr. Carlos Walker. On that same Sunday, having just arrived, Fr. Walker participated along with the Bishop of Barbastro, Don Alfonso, in the blessing of the bust and the enthronement of the relic (blood) of Blessed John Paul the Great, in our beloved sanctuary of Our Lady of Pueyo. At the end of the event, and after a simple toast in the dining room of the guest house, he met with the bishop for an hour to discuss various issues relating to the Institute’s presence in the diocese of Barbarstro. Then we had dinner along with Bishop Alfonso.
The next day, Monday of the Octave of Easter, we received the first group of pilgrims to the Virgen del Pueyo, those from Berbegal and Barbastro, and with that, the cycle of pilgrimages for 2013 was initiated. At the request of the Bishop, the pilgrims were received by Fr. Carlos Walker, who gladly performed the traditional meeting of the crosses, presided at the Holy Mass, and reminded the faithful present of the importance of this holy place, where entire generations had prayed and were sanctified through their devotion to our Mother in Heaven, and of the eloquent testimony of the monks – martyrs, who will soon be beatified.
From Tuesday the 2nd until Thursday the 4th, we participated in the on-going formation meeting for the religious of the Province of “Nuestra Señora del Pilar”, in which Fr. Walker joined us. On Wednesday, he presided and preached at the Mass in the morning, and gave us two conferences: in the morning, on the theme: “The Church of Christ subsists in the Catholic Church” and, in the afternoon, on the proper law and spiritual life of the religious of IVE.
On Thursday morning, Father visited the Museum of the 51 Claretian Martyrs of Barbastro, a living and most eloquent testimony of fidelity to Christ.
On Friday the 5th, he was able to visit the city of Zaragoza along with another priest, and in particular he visited the Basilica of the Virgen del Pilar, patroness of Spain and of the Hispanic world.
On Saturday the 6th, after an intense week of canonical visit, he departed for the Eternal City.
We are immensely grateful to God for this fruitful and kind visit of our Father General, who wanted to share with us the Octave of Easter and to join us for the first on-going formation meeting of the nascent Spanish-French province “del Pilar”.
Fr. Emmanuel Ansaldi, IVE