ABOUT US Marie Balavenne Year March 2016 August 2017

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Nigeria Celebrates.

The inaugural mass for the year of \Mari Balavene Lagos-Abeokuta Zone took place  in Ilogbo, at "Marie Balavenne’s" Catholic College on 19th of March 2016 which coincidentally was the Solemnity of St Joseph, Spouse of the Blessed Virgin Mary! The Lagos-Abeokuta zone consists of Assumpta Community (Ilogbo, Ota), Jean Leuduger Community (Idimu, Lagos), Ota Community (Ota) and Aradagun Community (Lagos).

Present at the celebration were sisters from the different communities, members of staff and students of "Marie Balavenne’s" Catholic College Ilogbo, who also considered it as a feast day for them, some pupils and teachers of Holy spirit catholic Nursery and Primary School, Ilogbo, our aspirant, the parish priest of our worshipping community, some parishioners from the main parish and out stations where the Daughters of the Holy Spirit are actively involved.

The celebration started with Holy mass officiated by the parish priest.  In his homily Fr. Yemi Sobiye connected Marie Balavenne’s life to that of St Joseph whose docility to the prompting of the Spirit was well highlighted in the gospel narrative.

After the mass, we had the second part of the celebration which included the brief history of Marie Balavenne and the congregation presented by one of the sisters. The history of this humble woman expose us to the ordinary things she did in extra ordinary ways, for example gathering other children to teach them and feeding the poor every day, teaching the widows and young girls skills to serve as means of survival for them. Teaching the children resulted to establishing the first school in that village.  She also taught catechism classes in the church with Renee Burel who later joined her and she did other things in the church which made her to be recognized. We were told that the congregation started in 1706 when Marie and Renee made their first commitment. The talk broadened our knowledge on how the first sisters were called sister of charity and later changed to Daughters of the Holy Spirit. Alongside the talk was also vocation talk for all seated either to sisterhood, secular or associate branch of the congregation.

There was a beautiful drama presentation, choreography and other wonderful entertainment by the students of Marie Balavenne’s Catholic College, Ilogbo, who are proud to be associated to this docile woman. What a beautiful celebration we had!

Written by Sr. Mercy Aghahowa, Editted by Esther Amowe, Assumpta Community, Ilogbo for the Lagos/Abeokuta Zone. Published on 25/06/2016

The year of Marie Balavenne was a unique one for us, the Sisters from Vice Provincial House, Marie Balavenne, Modakeke and Amazing Grace Communities,  Associates and Aspirants. We started the celebration with Mass celebrated by Fr Jonathan at around 9.35 am on the feast day of St Joseph. In his homily, he made us understand that, he was able to read about Marie Balavenne, Rene Burel and DON Leudeuger from the Congregational Website. How they were inspired by the Holy Spirit and dedicated to the mission of love through caring for the poor ones of our society. He also said that he has seen the Sisters living simply and humbly among our people. Interestingly, he made mention of the commitment of the Daughters of the Holy Spirit to the children wherever they are. Also a brief history of Marie Balavenne was read during Mass.

After the Mass, we all gathered to have light refreshment. And all ended with closing prayer.

From Amazing Grace Community, Osogbo, NIGERIA 

The first mass in commemoration of the year of Marie Balavenne our foundress (DHS) took place on 19th of March, 2016 at the Vice-Provincial house. Osogbo.

Present at the mass were four communities Modakeke, Amazing Grace, Marie Balavenne Community, Ipetu-Modu and Vice-Provincial house. Few associate and aspirant were also in attendance. The mass started at 10.15 a.m. and was celebrated by Rev. Fr, Jonathan (from the society of the missionaries of Africa). In his homily, He advised us to make love the centre of our lives. He also said that our Charism of Simplicity touched him deeply, that in the world of materialism and Consumerism. We have chosen a simple way of life which is a visible sign to the people we work with in our different apostolate and mission. Being the feast day of St. Joseph the husband of the blessed virgin Mary, the priest emphasized on the roles Joseph played in the history of Jesus, as his foster father. Although, Joseph died when Jesus was very young but before then, he handed on to Jesus his carpentry workshop after he had taught him. Jesus worked diligently in his father's workshop and today he is known as the son of the carpenter and a carpenter himself.

He stressed that it is the same thing applicable to our history as Daughters of the Holy Spirit. After going through the brief history of Marie Balavenne and life of the DHS on our website, he discovered a lot about the life of Marie Balavenne which he also sees in us through our simple life style. He dwelled more on our charism: which is a response to God's love, a call to live together in community and to go out and share the fruit of our togetherness with the children, women, sick and the poor in our world. He concluded by encouraging us to continue in our simple way of living what Marie Balavenne handed to us, promoting friendship and unity among ourselves and those we work with in apostolate and mission.

The brief history of Marie Balavenne was prsented by Sr. Jeannine. After the mass, there was group photograph, followed by refreshment and we all departed to our various communities.

Marie Balavenne Community, Ipetu Modu. NIGERIA. Published on 25/06/2016 


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