Many plans came undone in order to fulfill that of the Heart of Jesus. In this time, we are making a pilgrimage to this special encounter, united with the rest of humanity, which is experiencing the Paschal Mystery in the uncertainty and suffering that the pandemic brings.
And thanks to the undoing of our plans, we seventeen sisters from 11 countries and 4 different continents have made our own pilgrimages to get here. We have been making our way in the middle of the pandemic to reach Rome; some for 2 years and others, less. But all of us have the same desire to make a pilgrimage to the Heart of Jesus, from which we were born. We do not walk this time alone; we are accompanied by our families, communities, provinces, neighbors and all the people who have shared life with us. They are part of our history, which makes us who we are. With them, we arrive here.
We started the Third Probation with the opening gathering in which the General Team encouraged us to be open to what God wants to give us in this time. Inspired by no. 109 of the constitutions:
“Aware of her smallness, but trusting in God’s faithfulness, she strives to live a genuine love for Christ in the Eucharist and to give herself in service to his people.” We were strongly encouraged to live a genuine love and a real dedication to our brothers and sisters from within a particular family, the Handmaids of the Sacred Heart of Jesus. We all shared that, despite being in a country that is not ours, with Sisters we do not know and cultures so foreign to our own, we feel like family. We are happy to begin together this journey of definitive self-gift in the Institute.
For the first time in many years, the Third Probation is taking place in XX Settembre, the community in which Saint Raphaela lived her last years and where her presence is felt in every corner. Upon arrival we found a new house, prepared for us with many loving details, which invited us to prepare our hearts in the same way, so as to open ourselves to this new experience.
We ended the morning with a celebration of the Eucharist, where our universality and family atmosphere were strongly felt. We thank Fr. Cipriano Díaz, SJ and the Sisters of Torricella and the infirmary community who accompanied us and celebrated with us the joy of this moment.
3th May 2021