Hope Reborn

The growing friendship between the CL Community in Florida and Cenacolo through the Way of the Cross and a pilgrimage

Over the last few years our CL Community in Florida has had the opportunity to grow in friendship with the Comunità Cenacolo in St. Augustine, FL. Cenacolo was founded by Mother Elvira in 1983 to provide hope and healing to those suffering from addiction. Our Florida CL communities recently had two special opportunities to spend time with them.

The first was when our community of Jacksonville was invited to attend the Way of the Cross in St. Augustine led by the local Cenacolo communities and attended by the local bishop. The gesture was particularly well taken care of, with the same care to which we have been educated by our movement. Clearly, the Way of the Cross was prepared and lived in the memory of His passion.

The second was when friends from different CL Florida Communities gathered at the shrine Our Lady of La Leche in St. Augustine for a pilgrimage of prayer. After the gesture, we were welcomed for dinner at Cenacolo. We celebrated Mass with our dear friend Fr. Michael Kieler and enjoyed fresh baked pizza, which they prepared for us. The evening was spent together with the men that live there and some women from another house in the area. Once again we were surprised by the unity among us generated by the common belonging to the Church, our Mother.

Looking at them as they are walking a tough path of recovering from addictions is not easy. They tell you their stories which are full of struggles and they are clearly wounded. In their lives there is daily work, prayer, and communion held together with wanting to quit or to at least hide for a while. Yet, there is hope in their eyes.

It is not easy to look at them because when we do it puts us in front of our own weaknesses. Their hope somehow reminds us that we need to wake up from our own distraction.

To accept their welcoming smiles, to listen to their stories or to look at them while they serve exquisite pizzas, leads to the surprise of something more. It is the surprise of the unity generated by His presence among us.

We left their house that night with our hearts full of hope.

CL Communities of FL