They were days of misty fog pierced by a soft triumphant light. So were the pilgrimage days we spent in Claretian lands at the beginning of December 2018.
The 13 Claretians of this Forge-23 travelled those places, noticing how the clarity of a gospel-pierced life was still stronger than that thick and persistent fog that blurred the Osona region.
We came from Angola, North of Potosí, Dominican Republic, Chile, Argentina, Honduras, Malaga, Italy, Colombia, Las Palmas de Gran Canaria,… And to those places we will return very soon to tell many of what we have seen and experienced.
Having arrived in Vic, we started our immersion in this city and through various sceneries soaked in the life story of a universal man: Antonio María Claret, our holy Founder and Father. Those places made up the puzzle of an itinerary of his life, all of it spurred by the presence of God: Sallent (birth and childhood); Fusimaña (the tender intimacy with the Mother); Barcelona (convulsed youth full of projects and disappointments); Vic (the cultivation of roots); Viladrau, Seva, Santa Eugenia … (narrow stages for a young and restless priest); the sepulcher of Claret (his remains sealed with love); Monserrat (permanent presence of the Mother from the high massifs); CESC (guardian and notary of a past being increasingly unveiled); Casal Claret, Claretian complex of Barcelona (the permanence of an indestructible ideal); Sagrada Familia (imposing chest that shows Barcelona and the world our Catalan saint, first of the statues placed on the exterior, witness of his missionary and wandering ambitions).
As pilgrims and disciples we received an enormous amount of information. The data heard, surprising, sprinkled with anecdotes and emotions, confirmed how the charisma is transmitted and strengthened only by the rubbing and contagion. From a far distance, the mist hides and veils the deepest realities. We had to approach. From closeness and with witnesses, we saw in the proximity how the light was drilling mists and fog and allowed us to taste what remains always hidden to the distracted an occasional tourist. Those places transmitted energy, were electrifying…. They did not leave us indifferent… In addition to numberless photographs, we brought printed in our mind the ideal of a man who felt sent to the peripheries of the whole world and to whom the Lord has united us as children who continue to believe in his blessed madness.
Shortly after having passed through these places, we have a calmed and very grateful memory to many people. We cannot ignore it: to Fr. Carlos Sánchez, to whom we owe not little of what we experienced in those intense and frantic days; to Fr. Josep Armengol, who assisted us in the House of Spirituality -now with the absence of the sisters of the Claretian Institution-; to Fr. Joan Soler who opened the doors of Casal Claret to approach the reality of immigrants and the marginalized; to Father Toni Costa and his community with whom we walked through Sallent; to our Curia and to the infirmary community of Barcelona, for the brief and brotherly meeting they offered us.
Claretianos de la Fragua 23