Visit to VMY Croatia 2011
On November 25, a small group of four persons, members of the Vincentian Marian Youth Association in Slovenia, visited is new group of the Association in Rijeka which is in the early stages of being formed. Sister Veronika Popović invited us to give personal witness to the members of this new group and to share with them the significance of the Vincentian Marian Youth in our own lives. At the same time we were invited to speak to the group about the different activities that we have undertaken. We arrived in the afternoon and were greeted by Sister Veronika, DC and Father Dario Gribas, CM. We traveled to the house of the Daughters of Charity in Rijeka where some fifty sister live. The young women were arriving and together we had dinner.. After the meal we were welcomed by the Visitatrix who with great joy and pride greeted everyone who had gathered together in the house. We began with a prayer and then Sister Veronika invited us to begin a process of knowing one another in a more profound manner … the young people who had gathered there were not only from Rijeka but from other places outside the city.
Some group dynamics helped us begin the process of relating to one another. This was followed by the opening remarks of the new president, Petra Hribar, who introduced us to the group. We were able to explain the structures of the Association and the different activities that we are engaged in. As an international councilor I was able to speak about the work and the presence of the Association throughout the world. The young people then viewed a presentation of Catherine Laboure and the Miraculous Medal. We concluded our gathering with prayer in the chapel.
The following day the group in Rijeka prepared themselves to receive the Miraculous Medal as members of the Vincentian Marian Youth. Before the celebration of the Mass we gathered in the chapel to participate in a penitential service and then we shared the Eucharist which was presided by Father Dario Grbac, CM. During the celebration eighteen young women received the Miraculous Medal as they said “yes” to Jesus and Mary. In his homily Father spoke about the mission that had been entrusted to Saint Catherine and about the importance of wearing the medal every day.
After taking some photographs we then had lunch. The Sisters showed us the area that they have set aside for people who are homeless. When we arrived there the people had just begun to pray before sharing a meal. Their prayer consisted of a brief passage from the Bible and then a reflection on the passage.
We thank everyone in Rijeka for their kindness and for making the Vincetian spirit come alive. We are grateful for the different individuals who are collaborating with the VMY and especially grateful for the presence of the Vincentian Marian Youth in Rijeka.
To Jesus with Mary!