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Italian article on consecrated virgins


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Just thought I would pass this along! Here is an interesting article on a meeting of Italian consecrated virgins: http://www.avvenire.it/Chiesa/Pagine/Ordo-Virginum-la-Parola-vita-.aspx

And here is my very rough and mostly literal translation (which I first posted on my blog's facebook page):

“Ignorance of Scripture, in fact, is ignorance of Christ.” If this is true for all Christians, how much more so for those who have embraced the life of special consecration! For that reason, this celebrated saying of St. Jerome was chosen as the theme of the national convocation of the Ordo Virginum in the dioceses of Italy, in a program lasting from Thursday through Sunday at the Archdiocesan seminary of Milan, in Vengono Inferiore.

This charism, which finds its roots in the first centuries of Christianity and at the same time reflects the breath of fresh air of the second Vatican Council, is characterized by “spousality” with Christ and by “diocesanity” [i.e., its rootedness in the local diocesan Church], as stated expressly in canon 604 of the Code of Canon Law and in the recent pastoral letters of the Italian bishops’ conference, as well as by consecrated virgins’ prophetic presence in the world, in the ordinariness of life interwoven with work and social and ecclesiastical commitments.

The road to Heaven, in fact, passes through the earth and the only compass can be Scripture. “The Word of God is a treasure given to believers and the revelation of God’s passion for for us,” writes the Biblical scholar Rosalba Manes, a consecrated virgin of the Diocese of San Severo. “As Jesus assumed our human weakness and was made in the likeness of man, so also the Word of God, expressed in human language, is made in the likeness of our human speech. In the Word of God, we experience a prodigy: God has adapted His discourse to us so that we can know His tender and merciful nature and His saving action, which we are permitted to experience continually.”

The confrontation with the Word is not reserved only for great special occasions, but should be concretely chosen every day, as was underlined by Maddelena Mazzeschi, a consecrated virgin of the Archdiocese of Perugia-Città della Pieve and an entrepreneur. “The passages of the Gospel are the central thread of my daily life. When it comes to deciding what to do or how to do it, my first thought is how the words of the Gospel respond to the moment I’m living, and therefore how to conform my choices to this. This method, which I have followed since I was fourteen years old, has become automatic by now—this is not to say that we are always able to succeed, but this is the desire.”

And Rosella Bressani, a consecrated virgin of the Diocese of Pavia and a civil servant also confirmed: “The hearing of the Word is first of all fundamental for my life of baptism. It is the light that shows me the way and allows me to go forward without transgressing. It is therefore what permits me to renew my ‘yes’ each day and to remain faithful to my vocation.” And in the inevitable difficulties of this journey, Scripture becomes even more the rock we can hold fast to, as was evidenced by Evelina Monteleone, an accountant and a consecrated virgin of the diocese of Mazara del Vallo: “The Word of God is, together with the Eucharist, is the fundamental nourishment for my existence. I participate in Mass every morning before I go to work: it is a necessity for my heart. Often human beings disappoint us, but the Word remains the point of force from which we can stand with our eyes fixed on Jesus.”

Just as every relationship is nourished by gestures and words, so also is the relationship with the Lord, as underlined by Maria Antonietta Nieddu, a retired teacher and consecrated virgin of the Diocese of Nuoro: “Prayer is the rhythm that marks my relationship of love: it is the festive welcome of the Spouse who comes to meet me, I listen lovingly to His Word, in constant dialogue for an ever-deepening understanding of the Beloved, which becomes tenderness towards our brothers and sisters.”

After all, for those who desire to have “the same sentiments found in Christ Jesus,” as exhorted by St. Paul writing to the Philippians (Phil. 2:5), the recipe is familiarity with His Word.

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I liked this:   "Rosalba Manes, a consecrated virgin of the Diocese of San Severo. “As Jesus assumed our human weakness and was made in the likeness of man, so also the Word of God, expressed in human language, is made in the likeness of our human speech. In the Word of God, we experience a prodigy: God has adapted His discourse to us so that we can know His tender and merciful nature and His saving action, which we are permitted to experience continually.

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I liked this:   "Rosalba Manes, a consecrated virgin of the Diocese of San Severo. “As Jesus assumed our human weakness and was made in the likeness of man, so also the Word of God, expressed in human language, is made in the likeness of our human speech. In the Word of God, we experience a prodigy: God has adapted His discourse to us so that we can know His tender and merciful nature and His saving action, which we are permitted to experience continually.

I really liked this line, too!

Again, though, this is a very rough translation. I did my best to keep it as word-for-word literal as possible while still making basic sense. So it sounded much more stylistically elegant in the original Italian!

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