Return to the Spirit • A Video From Fr. Tomaž Mavrič

by | Apr 6, 2017 | Formation, Reflections | 1 comment

Here is the third video of the series dedicated to Folleville, presented by Fr. Tomaž Mavrič, CM.

You can see the first video of this third series in this link, and the second in this link.

Let us recall that two series have already been published:

These new videos were filmed on January 2, in Folleville.  We wanted to communicate the feelings that Vincent experienced in January 1617 when he traveled to Gannes.  Vincent was alone when he arrived at the de Gondi estate; no one was waiting for him.  Today, that is different … today there is a community of brothers and sisters there.  Folleville is much larger and today Saint Vincent is waiting for us!!

Fr. Tomaz Mavrič, CM tells us:

Approaching then the church, Vincent saw the church from, at the beginning, far away and then, all of a sudden, he is there in front of the entrance, at the door. What could he have felt coming in, a cold place? It was winter. How many people? Probably he was not really very much interested on how many he will see there. And then, approaching the altar, slowly getting towards the pulpit, experiencing that, that moment, those minutes, seconds getting up the stairs to get to the place from where he started to speak. And, in fact, it was not Vincent any more. It was God. It was Jesus speaking through him. What he felt, so experienced, after his sermon was a miracle. He started to understand that God works through people. He started to understand that one needs to be a tool in God’s hands. And miracles started happening. Conversions started happening, 400 years ago.

But here we are today, looking into our own Folleville. In our Follevilles around the world, we as Vincentian Family, we as followers of the Vincentian charism, are encouraged to, first of all, re-experience that moment again and then share it with the world.

How many people are waiting? How many people are in need of spiritual help, of physical help, material help? We need to take the person as a whole, not just one part, but as a whole. This is what Vincent got to understand. He again understood that Jesus is calling him to take the person who is in need in all its totality. Let’s go to our Follevilles around the world and again revive our own fire, revive the charism within our own, within ourselves and then encourage others to follow in Vincent’s steps, which is the step of Jesus in the gospel. We need to do something beautiful. We are called to do something beautiful for God. And here we are. This year, it’s our beautiful chance and gift to do so.

Video link in other languages:

Questions for dialogue:

After watching this video together, we can discuss with these suggestions:

  1. Am I aware that God wants to act — and He does, in fact — through me and my brothers in the Faith? What does it mean for me to be an instrument of God?
  2. What people are waiting for us? What people today, in our environment, need our spiritual, physical, material aid?
  3. For a follower of St. Vincent de Paul, is preaching the gospel the same as serving the poor? How do we integrate these two sides of our charism in this twenty-first century? How can we renew our service with a new vigor, from this 400 anniversary on?

General presentation of this video series

For us, 2017 is the anniversary year of the charism. Unlike other founders, Vincent de Paul did not have visions or receive messages from on high.  At two key moments in his life the Holy Spirit surprised Vincent and made him question himself with regard to two different forms of poverty: people are dying of hunger and… people are condemned because they do not know the truths necessary for salvation.  Thus, there was a hunger for the Word and a hunger for food … both of which result in a twofold death: death of the body and death of the soul.  After the failures that occurred during the first decade of his priestly ministry (failures that were revealed in the letter that he wrote to his mother and spoke about an honorable retirement which would allow him to spend the rest of his life with her [cf. CCD:I:15-16]), Vincent began to discover a new meaning in his life as a result of his charitable activity on behalf of the poor.  Folleville and Châtillon were the crossroads where Vincent encountered God.  After those events, Vincent became involved in a mission that gave meaning and direction to his life … and, as members of the Vincentian Family, gives meaning to our lives.

At the beginning of this Holy Year, this Charismatic Year … or perhaps it is better to say at the beginning of this Jubilee Year, Father Tomaž Mavrič, CM, superior general, mindful of the suggestion of an individual confrere (namely, Father Luiggi Mezzadri), decided to continue to communicate with all the members of the Vincentian Family through short video messages that are easily accessible in the various social media. He began with some reflections on Vincent’s cape, hat and shoes which from the time of the French Revolution have been preserved in the Mission House in Turin (Italy). And he now continues with this new series of three videos, inviting us to deepen in the Vincentian charism:

    • Go to Folleville
    • My Folleville
    • Return to the Spirit

Initially these messages were available in eight languages: Spanish, English, French, Portuguese, Italian, Polish, Slovenian and Slovak … Now add three more: Ukrainian, Russian and Hungarian. We are open to make these messages available in other languages and dialects.

This work has been entrusted to Piotr Dziubak, a film-maker who has produced various important documentaries, for example, De Gasperi-mio padre; Santo subito.  Alle perferie del mondo con Giovanni Paolo II; Liszt; Das Fenster zur Welt – 50 Jahre Zweites Vatikanisches Konzil.

Video courtesy of CMglobal YouTube Channel, based on an idea by Fr. Luigi Mezzadri, CM, and directed by Piotr Dziubak.

1 Comment

  1. Tom McKenna

    Excellent and moving presentation

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