A life given to God

A life given to God

Witness to My Life in the Institute of the Incarnate of the Sacred Heart

 By Sister Maria Pierina Guido

 

I 20170201_082543[1]was just 7 years old when I met our first Sisters who came to my city of Cosenza, Italy. Sister Dorothy and Sister Maria Cristina, prepared the children in their convent to receive the Sacrament of the Eucharist. I went immediately to join them because I too was to make my First Holy Communion. In fact I was soon prepared and accompanied numerous girls at the altar to receive Jesus whom I yearned for so much. Their dedication, goodness and tenderness touched my heart deeply.

The Holy Eucharist was celebrated in the Church of the Holy Crucifix of the Reform[1].

After I received Jesus for the first time  I felt a very strong emotion and my heart was flooded with so much love of Jesus then I heard a whisper in my soul, with infinite gentleness: “You must belong to me completely”  where and how the sisters had prepared me. I was so happy and told my mother and father that I wanted to be a nun, they were moved and smiled. They embraced me and said: ” You are still small you need to grow be good and pray.”

As the years passed by I felt my vocation call always more. I went to see the sisters every day and felt happy. They were preparing with performances and songs for the arrival of the Mother Foundress. My sisters and my little brother Franco attended with me. By then I was 10 years old.  I revealed my secret to Sister Dorothy that I wanted to be a nun and she told me to take advantage of the Mother’s visit and speak with her. I told her that I was ashamed and she gave me a monologue: “My secret to the light”, to learn and recite,   and this is what I did.

20170201_082451[1]The Mother listened attentively and gave me a hug and said:   “You’re too young right now, you must grow to love Jesus and to pray and when you are 15 I will be very happy to receive you at our convent in Rome”. I remained happy and I was so touched by the person and her goodness of the maternal mother that she conquered me.

Having reached the age of 15 years, accompanied by Sister Dorothy I left for Rome on May 8th.  At 12.00 noon the priest came for the Prayers to Our Lady (the Angelus) and I got ready to receive Jesus.

I am still in the Congregation at the age of 91 years and my life has not been easy. When I was 25 years old an opportunity came up to open a mission and in my youthful enthusiasm I  felt I was called to a second as a second vocation,  to go into  a foreign land and make known Jesus and His Gospel. I volunteered to go because I had heard in my heart this invitation from Jesus: “You have detached yourself from your family and also from your land to be completely mine.”

In November 1951, in a ship which was very old called the Camporra, along with three other sisters: Sister Happy, Sister Maria Stella and Sister Wilhelmina, from Genoa, I left for Brazil. It is not possible to mention here all the difficulties, renunciations, sacrifices, not finding even a house and having no financial means, but while the others were crying, I felt great joy. Everything was fine for me even though naturally I suffered too.

At a certain point the mission was about to collapse because the sisters, due to the many hardships and lack of essentials  fell ill with  tuberculosis and I, to save them,  offered with all the zeal of my heart my life to Jesus who heard my prayers. I was diagnosed with lung cancer. Operated in the hospital in Sao Paolo, Brazil, I was given just two months to live, but because of insistent supplications and nocturnal adoration of the Sisters and novices (who loved me very much) my lungs were miraculously healed from the mestizas.

I20170201_082425[1] continued to work by the grace of God, I have worked for the Congregation in many ways (despite my personal limitations) and in many positions:  Superior General for 18 years; local Superior for several years; the Mistress of Novices; Vicar general and councillor. I can testify that Jesus, my teacher was at my side, and He did everything.

As I reflect on this I feel increasingly small and not worthy of so much love!    And from my heart arises only thanks to the Giver of all good things, and I ask forgiveness for my lack of correspondence.

But my joy increases in belonging to my beloved Institute of the Sacred Heart of the Incarnate Word  and if I were to be born a thousand times again,  a thousand times  I would repeat my yes to my total donation to Him, my highest and only Good.

Sister Maria Pierina Guido

1- The convent-church complex, situated in the historic Cosenza, is commonly called “Reform” because the eighteenth century was the convent of the Reformed Friars, one of the many Franciscan families. These promoted the devotion to the statue of the Crucified Christ that proved to be miraculous since then. Such devotion was increased by the Capuchin Friars, to the point that, the people of Cosenza now identify where the church is venerated with the title of Sanctuary of the Most Holy Crucifix or simply the Church of the Crucifix, even if it is dedicated to Maria Santissima of Constantinople.

Wittness

Wittness

At Baptism He deigned to raise me:  to be daughter, bride and disciple-missionary

The threefold call

Sister Juliana Nacimento Garciajuliana

It was enough to wait ‘for the moment of God’ in my life to understand why it seemed late.  I am Sister Juliana Nascimento Garcia, the daughter of Julio Cardoso Garcia and Ana Maria do Nascimento Garcia. I am their youngest child, my older sister Raquel is already in Heaven and my brother Juliesio is the second oldest.  I was born in Rondonia State, in a small and distant city called Machandinho D’Oeste, a place remote to human eyes, but close to God’s eyes, who looked at me and called me.

It was February 4, 2003 and a morning different from others. I was baptized that day in St. John the Baptist chapel. I was sixteen and even though I will never forget that moment as one of celebration, a family- get-together and joy – I had great restlessness in my soul. Conscious of the great grace that The Lord was giving me I felt deep inside that Christ was in fact calling me to give my whole life to him.

On that day my Beloved Lord didn’t give me the grace of the Sacrament of Baptism alone but also that of the Sacrament of the Holy Eucharist which confirmed ‘the gift of my vocation’ It was characterized in that moment with a special call which I heard inside, telling me to “announce Jesus and make Him known and loved by all people”.  It was that restlessness in my soul which made me ask the question ‘why don’t I consecrate myself to God?’  How? And right then I had the answer –   the Sisters of the Sacred Heart of the Incarnate Word had just arrived in the city and were present at the Eucharistic service when I was baptized.

In front of the many graces that The Lord gave me that morning, a great desire was in my soul – the desire to no longer belong to myself but to Him who deigned to take me as His daughter and at the same time called me to be His spouse, that is, to ‘consecrate’ myself so that I could announce His Kingdom and be a Disciple-Missionary.  That day, while I was receiving the Holy Eucharist I gave my life to God, and praying I said: “I will be your spouse Lord.”  This was the only thing I knew to say in that moment to be “consecrated” to Him.  There were no longer any doubts – I knew I really wanted to be a missionary.  It was very clear in my mind and soul that I wanted to bring Jesus most of all to those who do not know Him, just as I was before.

juliana2

After some months of vocational guidance and being sure about what I felt inside, I entered the Congregation of the Sisters of the Sacred Heart of the Incarnate Word on July 10, 2003, in the city of Machadinho.  I had much joy and emotion when I entered aware of this great and precious mystery – which is impossible to understand with human reasoning but only through Faith.

On January 2nd, 2004, I became an aspirant in the community of Machadinho, with the desire to love and give myself to Jesus through a life of prayer.

On April 4th, 2005, I went to the House for Postulants in the Cacaulandia-Rio community and the following year to Curitiba (southern Brazil) to continue my formation. It was a time of grace, of understanding myself much more and a deep experience of love and of the mercy of God who loves me and who called me.

With the desire to completely give everything to God I began the Novitiate on February 11th, 2007. This was a precious time for me of new discoveries and experiences which profoundly enriched me in my spiritual and human walk.  I am thankful to the Holy Trinity as I felt much mercy during that period of grace.

It was in this way The Lord prepared me for the ‘real giving of myself’ through formal consecration on January 3, 2009, which I did in front of God and the community.  The emotion I had making my first vows, brought about in me a great joy which I could not contain because I understood the sweetness of the great GIFT of consecrating my life to God.

SisterJuliana Nascimento Garcia- S.C.V.E

50° years of Consecration to God!

50° years of Consecration to God!

La nostra20150716_094608 carissima consorella, Suor Giacinta Caligiuri, ha celebrato il 16 luglio 2015, il suo 50° di consacrazione a Dio nella nostra Congregazione delle Suore del Sacro Cuore del Verbo Incarnato.

Per tale occasione lei ha voluto trascorrere un mese nella comunità delle Suore a Betlemme. Arrivata in Terra Santa, ha potuto fare una bella esperienza, visitando i luoghi santi e vivendo forti momenti di silenzio e di preghiera.

Si è voluta preparare alla rinnovazione della sua consacrazione con una giornata di ritiro, vissuta intensamente. Condividiamo con voi le stesse parole che lei ha espresso a Papa Francesco, nel mese di Giugno, partecipando all’udienza pubblica in Piazza San Pietro: “Sono felice di essere suora, se dovessi scegliere di nuovo, ripeterei la stessa storia!.

Giovedì 16, di mattina, si è celebrata la Messa Cantata nella Grotta della Natività di nostro Signore Gesù Cristo. In quella Grotta santa hanno concelebrato i Frati Minori Francescani, e ha presieduto la celebrazione Fra Aquilino, il quale all’inizio della Messa ha voluto presentare Suor Giacinta alla comunità presente, mettendo in risalto la gioia della consacrazione a Dio nei lunghi 50 anni.

Dopo l’omelia, Suor Giacinta, guardando la stella, dove la tradizione colloca la nascita di Gesù Bambino, ha rinnovato solennemente i suoi voti di castità, povertà e obbedienza, seguendo le orme del Verbo Incarnato e della Venerabile Madre Carmela, nostra Fondatrice.

La sua testimonianza di gioia, semplicità e fede è stata accolta da tutti coloro che l’hanno accompagnata con molta emozione, ringraziando Dio per l’opera  che ha compiuto in lei.

Sister Carmelita Fernandez de Oliveira

Sister Carmelita Fernandez de Oliveira

Suor Carmelita Fernandez de Oliveira

CELEBRAZIONE DEL GIUBILEO

25 ANNI DI CONSACRAZIONE A DIO NELLA TERRA SANTA

 Ti ringrazio, Signore per il dono della vita, per la vocazione e la consacrazione a te, in questa Congregazione del Sacro Cuore del Verbo Incarnato. Per me, carmelitaDesertostare qui, in Terra Santa, oltre al grande desiderio che avevo da tempo di venire, credo che è stato un momento di “kairos”  di Dio per me.

Ho iniziato il mio pellegrinaggio al Santo Sepolcro, con la Messa di Risurrezione, e ho finito nella Grotta di Betlemme, con la Messa cantata di Natale.

Tutte le mie giornate qui, sono state vissute con intensità e gratitudine, tutto mi ha parlato di Dio Amore, perfino lo stesso Deserto di Giuda. Il mio cuore esulta di gioia, sento rinnovata la mia anima, il mio spirito e tutta la mia vita; ho un grande desiderio di ricominciare ancora un cammino nuovo, da percorrere nella conversione quotidiana.

Ho avuto anche due giorni di ritiro spirituale nel Getsemani, donde ho avuto la grazia di fare la sintesi della mia vita consacrata. Ringrazio Dio per tutto e specialmente alla Provincia del Brasile, che mi ha permesso questi giorni di grazia, alla Superiora Generale, Madre Vittoria Valentino, e anche tutte le suore di qui, Betlemme: Suor Clementina, Suor Ruth e Suor Martha, che mi hanno aiutato in questo pellegrinaggio. Dio benedica tutte per tutto il bene.

Con affetto Suor Carmelita F. Oliveira

Betlemme, 7 maggio 2015.

Sister  Juliana Nascimento Garcia

Sister Juliana Nascimento Garcia

At Baptism He deigned to raise me:  to be daughter, bride and disciple-missionary

The threefold call

Sister Juliana Nacimento Garciajuliana

It was enough to wait ‘for the moment of God’ in my life to understand why it seemed late.  I am Sister Juliana Nascimento Garcia, the daughter of Julio Cardoso Garcia and Ana Maria do Nascimento Garcia. I am their youngest child, my older sister Raquel is already in Heaven and my brother Juliesio is the second oldest.  I was born in Rondonia State, in a small and distant city called Machandinho D’Oeste, a place remote to human eyes, but close to God’s eyes, who looked at me and called me.

It was February 4, 2003 and a morning different from others. I was baptized that day in St. John the Baptist chapel. I was sixteen and even though I will never forget that moment as one of celebration, a family- get-together and joy – I had great restlessness in my soul. Conscious of the great grace that The Lord was giving me I felt deep inside that Christ was in fact calling me to give my whole life to him.

On that day my Beloved Lord didn’t give me the grace of the Sacrament of Baptism alone but also that of the Sacrament of the Holy Eucharist which confirmed ‘the gift of my vocation’ It was characterized in that moment with a special call which I heard inside, telling me to “announce Jesus and make Him known and loved by all people”.  It was that restlessness in my soul which made me ask the question ‘why don’t I consecrate myself to God?’  How? And right then I had the answer –   the Sisters of the Sacred Heart of the Incarnate Word had just arrived in the city and were present at the Eucharistic service when I was baptized.

In front of the many graces that The Lord gave me that morning, a great desire was in my soul – the desire to no longer belong to myself but to Him who deigned to take me as His daughter and at the same time called me to be His spouse, that is, to ‘consecrate’ myself so that I could announce His Kingdom and be a Disciple-Missionary.  That day, while I was receiving the Holy Eucharist I gave my life to God, and praying I said: “I will be your spouse Lord.”  This was the only thing I knew to say in that moment to be “consecrated” to Him.  There were no longer any doubts – I knew I really wanted to be a missionary.  It was very clear in my mind and soul that I wanted to bring Jesus most of all to those who do not know Him, just as I was before.

juliana2

After some months of vocational guidance and being sure about what I felt inside, I entered the Congregation of the Sisters of the Sacred Heart of the Incarnate Word on July 10, 2003, in the city of Machadinho.  I had much joy and emotion when I entered aware of this great and precious mystery – which is impossible to understand with human reasoning but only through Faith.

On January 2nd, 2004, I became an aspirant in the community of Machadinho, with the desire to love and give myself to Jesus through a life of prayer.

On April 4th, 2005, I went to the House for Postulants in the Cacaulandia-Rio community and the following year to Curitiba (southern Brazil) to continue my formation. It was a time of grace, of understanding myself much more and a deep experience of love and of the mercy of God who loves me and who called me.

With the desire to completely give everything to God I began the Novitiate on February 11th, 2007. This was a precious time for me of new discoveries and experiences which profoundly enriched me in my spiritual and human walk.  I am thankful to the Holy Trinity as I felt much mercy during that period of grace.

It was in this way The Lord prepared me for the ‘real giving of myself’ through formal consecration on January 3, 2009, which I did in front of God and the community.  The emotion I had making my first vows, brought about in me a great joy which I could not contain because I understood the sweetness of the great GIFT of consecrating my life to God.

SisterJuliana Nascimento Garcia- S.C.V.E

Camila Farias Parlot

Camila Farias Parlot

Renata, Mariana e CamilaI am Camila Farias Parlot, born on January 6, 1992, to Adeilton Parlot and Maria Aparecida Farias Parlot. I am the third daughter after Willian and Welida.  I felt the call to follow God since I was very young. I loved to go out with my family and friends, to go dancing and do sports.  I was part of the community of St. Miguel Arcanjo in Machadinho D Oreste (Rondonia-Brazil); I helped as a catechist in the community by visiting the sick, and was a member of the youth group and of the liturgical group.

Because of the life and apostolate of our Sisters, the desire to serve The Lord grew in me always more every day and on February 7, 2010, I entered the Formation House of the Congregation, in Porto Velho. I felt very welcomed by the sisters and by everyone who lives there.  In helping the neediest I have had beautiful experiences with God.

Our mission and spirituality is very rich: to contemplate the Heart of Jesus, the Word Incarnate.  On February 2, 2014, I began my novitiate, and a phrase of our beloved Foundress, Mother Carmel, is accompanying me during this period of formation:

 “Prepare your heart to be the garden of love”

Sister Laura Cecilia Alaniz

Sister Laura Cecilia Alaniz

Hidden in the Heart of the Word

Una parola, una voce, uno sguardo, sono bastati per fare crollare la moltitudine di sicurezze umane che pensavo bastassero per essere felice. Ma quella Voce, quella Parola, quel Seguimi” penetravano pian-piano nel mio intimo e mi riempivano di tante inquietudini. Inoltre quei desideri d’infinito che dormivano nel mio cuore, nell’attesa d’uscire, si svegliavano per dare senso a tutti i miei sogni e progetti. Il sentirmi amata, pensata, sognata, scelta da tutta l’eternità per un Amore che sorpassa i limiti di quanto io possa pensare, fare o immaginare mi colmava di gioia. Solo lì scopro il filo rosso che coinvolge tutta la mia vita e mi permette d’individuare in ogni momento e situazione che mi trovo dentro un progetto d’amore. È lì scopro che la mia vita è significativa; è lì che Lui mi si rivela facendomi prendere in mano la verità di me stessa: chi sono, cosa voglio? In questo contesto ho iniziato un cammino di discernimento, di libertà e costante ricerca della volontà di Dio.

laura

Ma come raccontare la squisita pace che ha riempito il mio cuore al momento della consacrazione religiosa? Come spiegare la gioia immensa di sentirmi amata? Come ringraziare il Signore che mi ha dato tanto facendomi sua sposa, di volermi accanto a Sé; di essere parte di un carisma a cui sono chiamata ad incarnare nella mia propria storia?

laura2

E oggi convinta che non erano e non sono le mie forze, ma la SUA FEDELTÀ che mi ha condotto fino a pronunciare il “SÌ”, a scegliere Colui che riempie il tutto del mio essere qui e adesso; un SÌ a vivere come Lui ha vissuto; un SÌ che mi conduce al segreto della felicità autentica, che é quella di donare la vita perdendola; di scegliere la Via dell’Amore che dimentica di sé per fare spazio all’altro. Un SÌ che si rinnova ogni mattino perché non so quanto sarò capace, non so quanto sarò libera, ma la strada la so: “Prendere la Croce e andare dietro a Lui”.

Suor Laura Cecilia Alaniz (Argentina)