La Salette in Rio de Janeiro
Editor: This article was written in November of 1935 by a La Salette Missionary serving in Rio. Therefore we have mostly used archival visuals from that time to enhance his reflections.Statue of Christ the Redeemer standing in the Tijuca Forest National Park overlooking the city of Rio. Christ’s arms are open, serving as a symbol of peace.
The following letter from a Missionary of our Lady of La Salette in Brazil affords some interesting side-lights on the life and customs of the people in that great South American republic. From it the reader may gather some idea of the life of a Missionary, with its light and shadow, in that vast and still undeveloped country where civilization in its noblest expressions and barbarity in its lowest form mingle in the strangest pattern. Our correspondent writes to us from Rio de Janeiro:
"From my window where I sit to pen these lines I can look but over the great and marvelous Bay of Guanabara, overcast now with a heavy shroud of black, ominous clouds; and as the mists rise and fall, the statue of "Cristo Redentor (Christ the Redeemer)" on the mountain peak of Corcovado appears and disappears from behind the veil that hangs before its two thousand feet of rocky pedestal.
The rain patters on the tiles outside my window, but, defiant of the downpour, the peddlers bawl their wares through the streets, and urchins who found the weather too bad to go to school, fill the air with a never ending chorus of screams and laughter.
It is only recently that I have really come to know and appreciate this capitol city of Brazil, Rio de Janeiro. On my first arrival in the summer of 1932, I was delayed here a month before continuing my journey southward to our missions among the "gauchos" of Sao Paulo. But my experiences then were similar to those of the average tourist who comes here on a sightseeing visit.
Read more: La Salette in Rio de Janeiro
Mother of the Church on Mission
Editor: The following is taken from the prepared Catechesis Instruction for the 2016 International Eucharistic Congress held in Cebu, Philippines. Question-and-answer format and reflection questions are added.
Why do Asians and others have a great love for Mary?
Theotokos (God-bearer) of Vladimir; Phoitio: Ajvol/wikipedia, 12th century
“Asian Christians have a great love and affection for Mary, revering her as their own Mother and the Mother of Christ”. Thus did Saint John Paul II recall a statement made by the Synod Fathers at their Special Assembly for Asia in 1998. . .
She is the model of the Church in its mission of evangelization because of how she closely cooperated in the saving work of her Son (Vatican II, Sacrosanctum Concilium, 2; citing Jn 10:16) and because she exemplifies the missionary journey that the Church has taken and continues to take.
Why is Mary so special?
As Mary was first recipient of the Good News at the Annunciation before she brought the same Good News to Elizabeth at her Visitation and to the rest of the world at the Nativity of her Son, so is the Church also called first to be an evangelized and an evangelizing community (Paul VI, Apostolic Exhortation Evangelii Nuntiandi,15 & 22).
At the foot of the Cross, Christ entrusted the Church and its mission to the care of his Mother: “Woman, here is your son” (Jn 19:26-27). “Mary is the Mother of the Church which evangelizes, and without her we could never truly understand the spirit of the new evangelization.” (Pope Francis, Apostolic Exhortation Evangelii Gaudium, 284).
Read more: Mother of the Church on Mission