Renewal of consecration a cause to rejoice

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Home > Media > News > Renewal of consecration a cause to rejoice
Renewal of consecration a cause to rejoice

Three members of the Palavra Viva community making their solemn renewal of commitment is cause for rejoicing, Archbishop Julian said.

He was speaking at the Vigil Mass at Sacred Heart Church in Newstead, Launceston, as consecrated lay women Ana Maria Alkmim, Mariana Martins and Cassia Sampaio renewed their commitment to poverty, chastity and obedience within the Palavra Viva Catholic Community.

The founder of the Brazilian-based community, Alysson Norberto da Costa, attended the Mass, as well as a community priest, Fr Adenilson Carpina, who is based in Rome.

Afterwards, Cassia, 30, described her renewal of commitment as ‘amazing’.

“The combination of the liturgy and prayer, and friends and all the people we met in Tasmania, sharing this with us was a very deep moment.

First professed in 2017, she and other community members renew their commitment each year for six years, when they make a perpetual commitment.

“We are saying yes to Him again, to keep on our mission [of] giving ourselves to Him; and to thank Him for His graces, and to continue to share our evangelising charism to make a difference in the life of the people.”

She says she was called to join the Palavra Viva Catholic community after a profound, life-changing encounter with Jesus on a retreat in 2012.

“He was calling me to leave everything and follow Him,” Cassia recalled.

“I felt in my heart that I had to join the community and receive formation, share my experience with Jesus, take part in daily Mass, adoration, praying the rosary. I felt that calling to give my life entirely to Him.”

The Palavra Viva Catholic Community has 28 mission houses around the world, including Launceston.

Cassia says she is grateful to see how God is using them to help people experience Jesus.

“Yesterday we had a young person with us, we have known him for two years and now he wants to be baptised in the Church. It is very fulfilling, to see how God is using us to draw people closer to Him; through our work with young people; with families; to share the same experience with Jesus that I had; encounters; bringing meaning in to lives.”

Ana Maria Alkmim, 24, plays guitar and sings as part of Palavra Viva’s music ministry. She explained what the solemn renewal of commitment meant to her.

“It means the covenant with the Lord, and God is the Lord of my life,” she said. “It means I am sure of the choices I have made and I will keep renewing them until I reach Heaven one day.”

She said that Australians had been welcoming to the community and its charism of evangelisation.

In the coming year the community was planning more youth retreats and parents’ retreats; as well as continuing to work at the University of Tasmania where a Catholic students’ group has been set up.

Being a consecrated lay woman is ‘like being a nun but we don’t use the habit’, according to Ana.

“But we have consecrated our lives solely to God. We make a commitment of poverty, chastity and obedience. We live in the world. We go to the places we live to introduce many to our charism but we belong to God and we live a consecrated life.”

The third member of the community to renew her commitment, Mariana Martins, has since returned to the Palavra Viva Catholic Community in Brazil. However, the community in Tasmania is still six-strong, as a new member has arrived.

During his homily, Archbishop Julian said: “We rejoice in their decision to follow Jesus in this particular path that the Lord has revealed to them.

“We pray for them that the Lord’s abundant blessing may descend upon them afresh this day. We rejoice in a particular way because they will continue to live their consecration amongst us here in Tasmania.”

Image: Palavra Viva Catholic Community members (L-R) Ana Maria Alkmim, Mariana Martins and Cassia Sampaio renew their commitment to consecrated life. Photo courtesy of the Palavra Viva Catholic Community.