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Stand up and testify

This is the invitation that Pope Francis made with his message for World Youth Day. But it is not enough to get up, then we have to set out on the road and make us meet, let ourselves be questioned and witnessed to Jesus in our life. How to do?

As a team of the Pauline Family we lived a summer mission in Basilicata, in the diocese of Melfi, from 1 to 8 August 2022.

To tell how much the Lord has given us to live in this adventure, I leave the floor to Cecilia, a young university student of Medicine, who tells us what she experienced during her mission days.

"It is always difficult to summarize in a few lines an experience that has filled your heart, because no words really can explain the moments we have lived.

I left for this adventure without knowing what I was going to do (so much so that I didn't even know what to pack), I launched myself, without thinking too much, trusting myself completely. On the spot I met the Pauline Family, whose name was already known to me since my parents belong to the Holy Family Institute, but whose various branches I did not know or what distinguished them; I was immediately enthusiastic for their union, complicity, for their contagious joy, for the depth and truth of the catecheses they gave. In a few days I came to feel at home, in my family, with each of them and their spirit was transmitted by osmosis to us young people too.

This experience included a first part of walking / training, more introspective and personal, and a second part of mission, in which we threw ourselves into different realities of the diocese of Melfi, inviting children and adults from all cities to the various events organized by us. We therefore found ourselves in close contact with strangers and in the few moments of our meeting we tried to pass on to each of them how much joy the presence of God gives in our life, how much this meeting can change your life allowing you to embark on a new path in which He is at the center of your existence. The fruits of these events and of our mission activity have been incredible and unimaginable, so many people have accepted our invitation, surprising us more every day. None of us, however, feels really responsible for this miracle and authorized to take credit, we have done nothing but put ourselves in his hands and let him do with us what was his will. In everything we did, in all the people we met, in all the words we exchanged, there was him.

I feel privileged to have made this encounter with him and what I have understood in these days is that I cannot keep his presence to myself in a selfish way, I have to share it and spread it through my words and my life. I must allow this joy that I have in my heart to reach all the people around me. The real mission begins now ”.

sr. Irene Tollini, sjbp

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