The XVI Meeting of St Alphonsus at El Espino and IV Iberian Meeting of Laity in Spain


The Lay and the Religious Redemptorists of Spain and Portugal gather for the XVI Meeting of St. Alphonsus and IV Iberian Meeting of lay members.

(Burgos, Spain) The lay and religious Redemptorists from Spain and Portugal met at El Espino Monastery (Burgos, Spain) from July 29 to August 3. One hundred and thirty lay adults and fifty children and young people have met in these days of formation, meetings and prayer.

On Monday afternoon, Fr. Provincial Superior of Spain presided over the Eucharist, opening the meeting and encouraging us to work together as lay and religious from the point of view of the Redemptorist charism.

Father Ignacio María Fernández de Torres spent with us one and a half days from Tuesday morning until Wednesday afternoon reflecting on the social doctrine of the Church.

On Wednesday afternoon, Father Pedro López, representing the General Secretariat of Evangelization and the Commission for Shared Mission, presented us with the draft directory for the shared mission. And later, the text and the expectations of the various groups were discussed.

Thursday was the feast of St. Alphonsus, a day for the party, culture and fun. We visited the town of Frías and in the afternoon, we celebrated the Holy Mass commemorating the feast of St. Alphonsus. During the Eucharistic celebration, the marriage of Rosa Mari and Manolo, laypeople from the Community of Vigo (Spain) was blessed, who were engaged as Lay Missionaries of the Most Holy Redeemer (MLSR) before the Provincial Superior of the Province of Madrid, Fr. Francisco Caballero. It was a festive ceremony and community engagement, where the celebrant (Fr. Pineda) made a historical memory of the meetings of lay people in the province.

On Friday morning, the Portuguese laity prepared a session on prayer and conducted for the group based on Psalms. In the afternoon, we held a general assembly, where the start of activities of the Provincial Commission for the Shared Mission was presented that met for the first time within this Meeting and convened a meeting of Redemptorist laity for the days 22, 23 and 24 of November. The Portuguese laity invited them to participate with them on November 9 in the community celebration of the commitment of new Lay Missionaries of the Most Holy Redeemer. They also invited to participate with them, in the month of March, at the beginning of a reception activity in their community of Porto.

Every day they have revolved around three moments of prayer (morning, mid-day and night) and an evening Eucharist. It has also been shared fraternally with a few refreshments in the “snacks” at noon and with a theatre performance and magic moments.

We successfully completed the XVI Meetings of Saint Alphonsus and IV Iberian Meetings of laypeople. As in previous editions, lay and religious from different communities of Spain and Portugal, we have lived together fraternally, making one of the priorities indicated by the last General Chapter: The Shared Mission.

Rafael Junquera (MLSR)

General Commission Member for the Shared Mission