Yes, you read that correctly! The Ladies of Charity/AIC prepare for 400th Anniversary! Not many groups in the church… of for that matter outside the Church… can claim that distinction. They are one of the oldest continuously functioning groups of laity in the Church. They were the first foundation of Vincent in 1617.
First of all they intend to deepen their grasp of the charism and continue imitating Christ and St, Vincent as they have done for 400 years.
They will also share with others who they are and make themselves known. They are asking their leaders to develop specific plans for each country, region and local group.
Finally, they celebrate in 2017 in many different ways. Their present plans include the pilgrimages to Paris and Chatillon where it all began. Their 2017 International Assembly March 12-15 will convene in Chatillon and they hope to have 400 participants.
The following SlideShare presentation offers some thought about how they intend to celebrate.
Alicia Duhne, International President, writes of their plans to mark the truly special occasion…
We have selected our logo which will you will receive very soon.
We invite you to continue undertaking the steps of preparation for this celebration. Last year we deepened our charism and this year we propose communicating about our Association. This is why we have been sending the reflections linked to the AIC Charter. In this way we will have more elements to continue deepening our knowledge and to be able to speak to others about who we are and what we do in our Association.
I would like to take this opportunity to remind you that we are counting on you to promote the careful study of these reflections within the groups of volunteers. To this end, I invite you to send them to all the regional coordinators and your spiritual advisors (national and regional) so that they can in turn pass them on again.
During the recent Assembly in Guatemala we also looked at a few ideas being used to communicate verbally and visually in our associations. We are attaching a PowerPoint to share some of the suggestions with you.
In 2017, we will have:
- The Jubilee Year from 8th March to 8th December, with activities which we will inform you of nearer the time.
- Our International Assembly in Châtillon from 12th-15th March (with 400 participants). We will let you know later how many volunteers from each country will be able to be present at this Assembly as well as the details of the celebrations.
Before ending my message, I would like to recommend that you read in your own time the new encyclical of our dear Pope Francis “Laudato SI”, which speaks about the care of the Common Home (a call for the preservation of the environment). You can read it if you go to the Vatican website: www.vatican.va – I recommend it. The following paragraph about Saint Francis of Assisi really caught my attention:
“He was particularly concerned for God’s creation and for the poor and outcast. He loved, and was deeply loved for his joy, his generous self-giving, his openheartedness. He was a mystic and a pilgrim who lived in simplicity and in wonderful harmony with God, with others, with nature and with himself. He shows us just how inseparable the bond is between concern for nature, justice for the poor, commitment to society, and interior peace.” (Paragraph 10)
I send you my warmest regards and blessings as your sister in Christ and Saint Vincent,