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March 29, 2016

“A dream that you dream alone is only a dream; a dream that you dream together becomes reality.” That was what a Brazilian singer, Raul Seixas, said.
So, dreaming together, the idea of the experience of Easter in Porteirinha, Northern Minas, Brazil, between March 23 and 26, was born. With the mission to evangelize and to experience with the people, Daughters of Jesus and lay educators of the “
Colegio Imaculada” of Belo Horizonte, of the Social Work “San José Obrero” and of the Social Work of Montes Claros joined Sister Amônica, in Porteirinha, to live Easter with young people who did the Easter for Youth in 2015 and felt called to the “Magis” in their lives.
“Arriving in Porteirinha, in the Gangorra community, we were certain that our Paschal Triduum would be different and unique. The place is an example of sustainable living, built in an environmentally correct way, attesting that we can live simply and stripped, taking care of the ‘Common Home’, Mother Earth. It was possible to perceive the joy of reunion, surprise, the openness and warmheartedness of each young participant. The reflection of the night was an invitation to get together with Mary, on the road with her son Jesus to the cross and resurrection.
On Holy Thursday, we recalled the Last Supper of Jesus with his disciples, when he instituted the Eucharist and the priesthood, and invited us to “love-service” translated into concrete loving gestures. We got to know, on that day, institutions that make the difference in social responsibility in the city, bringing life and dignity to a variety of people in need in the region. We participated in the celebration of the Washing of the Feet in the Community of the Assumption.
Good Friday, the day to relive the passion and death of Jesus, began very early, with the Way of the Cross in a place privileged by nature, awakening us to the care of the “Common Home”. It was also an auspicious day to reflect on the meaning of the Sacrament of Reconciliation. A day of silence, prayer, worship and sharing the Passion of Christ which continues in our broken world. We participated, too, in celebrating the Veneratiion of the Cross and the scene of the Passion.
On Saturday, waiting for the Resurrection, we accompanied the sunrise, singular show of the power of nature. We contemplated life reborn in each new day. The desire and action were to distribute the signs of resurrection in the city market. Youth, educators and sisters enlivened the atmosphere with music and joy. We gathered signs of life from the people. We gave hugs and a recipe of a homemade repellent against mosquitoes attacking people’s health, we approached people to express in a poster everything that is a sign of resurrection for them, we collected garbage, did paintings on the faces of children … and much more. We planted seeds of life and peace.
Returning to the Gangorra community, we had the celebration of the Eucharist, a festive lunch and then we came back with a grateful heart, on fire and wanting to be better people, able to sow love, hope, joy, justice, fraternity and faith in the ways of life. Our hearts became filled with the certainty that the experience has been very rewarding and the charism and mission of Saint Candida remain ever alive. We expressed gratitude for each one who has made possible our meeting with joy, love and care.”