Walking the Beatitudes
Written by Sr Rachel Fleurant MGL
Sunday, 08 February 2009
‘Walking the Beatitudes’ all began when a friend Clare Burns and I planned a bushwalk that would draw young people together for spiritual recreation and to raise much-needed funds for the Missionaries of God’s Love (MGL) seminary building appeal.
The life of Pier Giorgio Frassati, one of the patron saints of World Youth Day Sydney 2008 was a catalyst for the bushwalk. I was inspired to create a walk that would draw people together for some quiet contemplation away from the distractions of ordinary life and allow them the chance to encounter Jesus through friendship and the Eucharist.
At the start of the 15 kilometre journey, the walkers met at Ceres Community Environment Park in East Brunswick for coffee and to hear about the life of Pier Giorgio Frassati. Discussed was Pier Giorgio’s motto of ‘Action, Prayer and Sacrifice’, and his love for the poor, which he demonstrated with a fearless compassion, saying: “Jesus comes to me everyday by means of Holy Communion. I repay him in a small way by visiting the poor.”
Known as the ‘Man of the Beatitudes’, Pier Giorgio was a man committed to living his faith in public. Many young people today find in Pier Giorgio a modern hero, a man whose love of God transformed his own life and the lives of those around him. His passion for sports, mountains, music and arts and political activism are what drew others into friendship with him and with God.
In the spirit of Pier Giorgio, this enthusiastic band of Melbourne walkers also embraced the greatness of the creator in nature along the Yarra River track. This track led them to the historic Fairfield Boathouse, where they were joined by other supporters of the MGL seminary building appeal for a Mass overlooking the Yarra River. The last leg of the journey included a quick stop at Studley Park Boathouse before finishing the walk at Abbotsford Convent.
The MGLs are committed to the work of the new evangelisation, leading people – especially young people – into a personal relationship with Jesus Christ with new ardour and fresh initiatives.
Source: Kairos Catholic Journal