MARCH

06

1848. Claret sails from Cadiz towards the Canary Islands with Bishop Codina.

1850. Claret begins Spiritual Exercises for Ordinands in Vic.

1867. Claret sends Mother Paris a copy of the new catechism that he has sent to all the bishops of Spain and that he would like to see as the single catechism; in November 1865 he presented it to Pius IX and earned his approval.

THE CONSOLIDATION (1899-1906)

THE MISSIONS IN GUINEA DURING THIS PERIOD

Thanks to a Decree of the State Ministry in 1902, in which he was obliged to present an annual Report of the Spanish possessions in Africa, we have abundant information from the hand of Fr. Armengol Coll. In 1903 the publication of the bimonthly Claretian magazine also began La Guinea Española [Spanish Guinea], with the objective of commenting on the religious, material and moral interests of the Gulf of Guinea.

The missions in Guinea can be grouped into three groups: the Fernand group, all located on the island of Fernando Poo, which were separated and isolated from the others, with a lot of information about their lives and apostolic works. The group of those on the borders of the continent, all of them in the vicinity of Muni River: Corisco, Cabo San Juan, Elobeys and Rio Benito. And finally, Annobon, which because of its absolute isolation, because of the special condition of his inhabitants, offered a very particular atmosphere for the apostolate, very different and segregated in its development and in its history from the other missions.

Leon CARBONERO SOL

Journalist (1812-1902)

Villatobas (Toledo, Spain). He was one of the most influential personalities of the Spanish ecclesiastical life of the 19th century. Founder, director, owner, and editor of the newspaper La Cruz [The Cross], a religious magazine that was created in Seville in 1852. He arrived in Madrid in 1828 to study at the Imperial College. He married in 1840 and had six children. He moved to Toledo and later to Seville as a professor of the Arabic language. He was editor of the newspaper El Conciliador [The Mediator] until he founded his great work La Cruz, which made him an important figure in the history of the Spanish Church. On November 1, 1858, Claret founded the Academy of St. Michael in Madrid. Among the partners of the first Hierarchy was Leon Carbonero y Sol. He moved to Madrid during the revolution of 1868. He published a large number of books and held numerous positions. Claret was his great friend and counselor. La Cruz published numerous articles about the saint, including those about his beatification process. He corresponded with Claret. He died on March 4th.

Faithful to His Missionary Vocation

I started giving missions in the parish of Viladrau on August 15, 1840, while I was conducting a novena in honor of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary. Next, I gave another in the parish of Espinelvas, a good hour away from Viladrau. Then I went to the parish of Seva. The mission here was more sensational than the others. A large number of people underwent conversion and made general confessions. This was the start of my fame as a missionary. (Aut 172)

During November I held an All Souls’ novena in Igualada and Santa Coloma de Caral…Thus I remained in Viladrau for eight months, going out on missions and returning. But I couldn’t continue in this way any longer. As I have said, when I was in town, I visited the sick…I was terribly upset at seeing the tears of the people and listening to all the reasons they gave why I shouldn’t leave the parish to go preaching. (Aut 173)

This forced me to ask my superior to relieve me of my duty as regent and free me from any parish obligations. I asked him to let me know his decision soon so that I could go and preach missions wherever he chose. This he did… (Aut 174).

PARA LA REFLEXIÓN PERSONAL

 

Despite the pastoral success he experienced in Viladrau, Claret did not forget his missionary vocation.

  • Have you had to make sacrifices in order to be faithful to your missionary freedom?
  • How could you convert your pastoral work into a more missionary and Claretian apostolate?

Doing God’s will happens, sometimes, by disappointing some people.

  • Have you experienced that?

 

“Oh, how good a Friend art Thou, my Lord!…
Thou dost remember the times when we love Thee,
my Lord, and when for a moment we repent,
Thou dost forget how we have offended Thee.

(St. Teresa of Avila, Life, 8. 6)

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