Women builders of peace in a Church which goes forth.
At this time, it seems of vital importance that we take up our position as women builders of peace in a Church which goes forth.
Let us look to Mary, Queen of Peace, Patroness of WUCWO and learn from every “circle of peace” where she was and still is a protagonist. Mary creating the atmosphere of peace in her family, in the house of Nazareth; Mary causing peace in her people, in the environment of Jesus, for example when she “steals” the first miracle from her Son at Cana; Mary uniting the apostles in harmony and prayer in the Cenacle, to wait in a climate of peace for the coming of the Holy Spirit at Pentecost; and Mary intercessor of peace at so many moments in the history of humanity. Mary as a builder of peace in the family, in its wider environment, in the first cell of the Mystical Body, which was the “Church that goes forth” par excellence and in so many countries.
Pope Francis, when he consecrated Russia and Ukraine to the heart of Mary on 25 March, said to her: “Mother of God and our Mother, to your Immaculate Heart we solemnly entrust and consecrate ourselves, the Church and all humanity, especially Russia and Ukraine. Accept this act that we carry out with confidence and love. Grant that war may end and peace spread throughout the world. The “Fiat” that arose from your heart opened the doors of history to the Prince of Peace. We trust that, through your heart, peace will dawn once more. To you we consecrate the future of the whole human family, the needs and expectations of every people, the anxieties and hopes of the world”.
We know that there are more than 20 countries with armed conflicts in the world and all of them are thirsty for peace. As Easter approaches, let us open wide our hearts to pray for peace in the whole world and to receive the grace for ourselves and our organisations to be builders of peace in a Church which goes forth. May the Risen Lord give new strength to our action and mission.
When the Holy Father talks to us about the “Church which goes fort” in Evangelii Gaudium 24, he explains that Jesus “has loved us first”, taking the initiative to come to meet us and therefore we have to “boldly take the initiative, go out to others, seek those who have fallen away, stand at the crossroads”, shrinking distances that allow us to get involved, “touching the suffering flesh of Christ in others”. In this way we can accompany the processes of those who experience suffering and fatigue. And we must even celebrate liturgically with these people in order to bear fruit with them.
This is what we intend to realise in an in-person event, open to all WUCWO women from different parts of the world, in Athens in October 2022, if Divine Providence spares us from force majeure. The title of our Third Meeting with Women from the Middle East and the Mediterranean will be precisely: Women builders of peace in a Church which goes forth. Let us also leave this project in the hands of Mary, our Mother.
I invite you to pray together to our Patroness, Mary Queen of Peace, our prayer (see WUCWO website): “O Loving God, your Son, Jesus Christ, came into the world to do your Will and leave us His Peace. Through the intercession and example of our Blessed Mother Mary, Queen of Peace, grant us the wisdom and humility to reflect that peace to the world. Inspire our thoughts, words and deeds to bear witness to your presence in our hearts. May your Holy Spirit fill us with every grace and blessing so that we may pursue what leads to peace for all humanity. Amen”.
I bid you farewell, dear friends, with an affectionate “Easter Alleluia” so that together we may celebrate the victory of Jesus over death, of peace over war, of harmony over hatred.
María Lía Zervino, Servidora
WUCWO President General