The Congregation came into existence, by the express will of the M. Foundress, on the feast of the Immaculate Conception. Foundress, on the feast of the Immaculate Conception.
The feast of the Immaculate Conception is the oldest feast in the Congregation. It connects us directly to our origins:
The first Daughters of Jesus collected it in the Historical Reviews of data heard from the Mother Foundress when she spoke to them about the inspiration of the Rosarillo: to found a new Congregation…
“It seemed to me that Our Lady was repeating it in my ear over and over again. That is why you have always heard me say that she was the foundress“.Historical Review FI
Herranz confirms this in the words he addressed to them in Salamanca on December 8, 1871, two years later:
“…under the protection of Jesus Christ and Mary Immaculate, they come to cultivate the gardens of childhood and youth…”;
“…the Daughters of Jesus Congregation which, today and with this act, begins to rise up in the Church under the protection and tutelage of the Immaculate Virgin, whose feast we celebrate today…”;
“…always taking Mary Immaculate as the Star of your paths”.P. Herranz December 7 and 8, 1871
When, a few months later, she prepared the text of the Constitutions on the Ignatian basis, Mother Candida made some particularly significant additions:
“…under the visible protection and special protection of the Immaculate Conception of the Virgin Mary…” (FI 1);
“…remembering that our Mother and Patroness is the ever Immaculate Virgin” (FI 28);
“On the 8th day of each month, out of gratitude to the Immaculate Conception of Mary… there will be practical exercises of virtues, after which the Mother will exhort them to self-denial and to the other virtues, especially union and fraternal charity” (FI 18).
He speaks of the Virgin as our Mother. It does so from a relationship of love, tenderness and trust. He takes Maria’s answer for granted. It is along these lines that “to live”, “to be”, “to place ourselves under his mantle” or the invocations with which he opens most of his letters. They are summarized in an act of trust.
The Immaculate Conception is a presence that unites the community of the Daughters of Jesus, that creates communion. She is also a companion, a helper in life, especially in difficult moments when one experiences one’s own poverty more vividly.
But, above all, Mary Immaculate leads us to Jesus. She is our intercessor with her Son to obtain all kinds of good things. He will be the one who helps us to participate in the mysteries of Christ’s life and to open ourselves to the grace that flows from them. It is a Model, a Way for our identification with Jesus. Mary teaches us to be “true Daughters of Jesus”, according to the spiritual conception of Mother Candida.
To be Daughters, to look like Jesus, to be true… This is Mother Candida’s wish for her and for us. For school students. For the laity with whom he relates and for those who are attracted to his life. To bring us to Jesus, his Love and his Passion.
It is a matter of commemorating, every 8th of December, the first day of our existence, with feelings of gratitude to the Immaculate Conception and with the desire to be faithful to our religious commitment: to be “true Daughters of Jesus”.
Where does your devotion to Mary take you? Where does your love for St. Candida lead you? What is Our Lady inviting you to on this feast of the Immaculate Conception? May the Mother Candida Family find us together, hand in hand, at the feet of Jesus and, as true children, may we be able to say: “Here we are, send us”.
HAPPY DECEMBER 8TH! HAPPY IMMACULATE FEAST DAY!
If you want to know more about the Immaculate Conception in our tradition, you can read in our Resource Library “The Immaculate Conception in the experience of the Daughters of Jesus”. This is the conference given by Inés Laso as Superior General, at the closing of the Jubilee Year for the commemoration of the 75th anniversary of the death of M. Candida. Candida. From it we have extracted these data.