His vision is now lived in 30 countries including Canada, the US and Cuba
ONTARIO, Canada.- As the feast of St Pedro Poveda was being celebrated in 30 countries,on July 28, the movie POVEDA about his life and legacy was being shown over television in Canada through the efforts of members of the Teresian Association (TA) in that country.
A fitting homage on the 85th anniversary of his martyrdom, according to Febe Aguirre who spearheaded these efforts and worked with a team to organize a Triduum of preparation for the feast day, via zoom.
Members of the TA, families and friends in Canada, various states in the US and in Holguín, Cuba, joined the gathering as well as people from the Philippines, Japan, and Venezuela, in spite of the different time zones and language. All was possible with the use of social media and the expertise of Sarah Bangit, Clarisse Rubias and Vicki Gerardo.
For three consecutive evenings the group prayed and recalled aspects of the life and spirituality of Saint Pedro Poveda, a diocesan priest who had the vision of believing in the laity and the role they could play in the midst of society through their witness and evangelizing.
In 1911, in Covadonga, Spain, he conceived the idea and began gathering collaborators that would live his dream. In 1924 the Church granted pontifical approval to the association he had created, thus allowing it to expand beyond the borders of Spain. It is now present in 30 countries of four continents
As such, the Triduum “was rooted in the very life of our Founder, in the life of our vocation-mission, and the experiences that many of us shared”, Aguirre explained.
Some 50 people, via zoom, were able to listen to Costantin Kabamba Matshitshi as he shared in French about his work with inmates as a correction officer in Laval Quevec. Aida Varela from Miami presented the work with young people in Chicago and South Florida, helping immigrants through the programs EDIW (Education for an interdependent World). Olga Anglada from Chicago spoke of actions being taken by the Poveda Education Project (PEP) and the work she and her husband Roberto do with families.
The group also learned about the presence of the TA in the United Nations. Patricia Stockton explained how the TA is an NGO with consultative status and participates in issues related to to education, women rights, sustainable development and climate action. It does it in New York and in Geneva.
“Pedro Poveda encouraged us to live with the mind and heart in the present moment”, she said. “He encouraged us to dream and make a reality our dreams”.
In her words about the TA mission in the US and Cuba, Toni Miranda recalled a song dedicated to Poveda and his ‘good idea’ of the Teresian Associacion.
“One idea and only one is all he had and all he needed. On his journey to the sun, he passed our way and did us good”, says the song.
For Miranda, during the 60 years of presence of the TA in the US “Pedro Poveda has passed our way and done us good”. She summarized the work done in South Florida touching lives in Education, Social Work, Communication, Migrant Ministry, formation of the laity, Spirituality and Church leadership. She also spoke about the evangelizing work in Holguin Cuba, forming the laity in the fields of Education, Communication and Theology, as well as supporting and forming new members already joining the TA.
Gigi Geraldo and Ana Lobo shared about their Christian witness in their own profession and Dolores Gracian, the first member to bring the TA to the United States shared about her life, now retired from teaching Chemistry at a New York College, but living her vocation in fidelity to Poveda who stressed that “prayer is the only strength of the Teresian Association”.
On July 28, Fr. Don Pumputis, from St. Joseph Catholic Church in Stratford, Ontario, celebrated an on-line Mass for the group. He offered a summary of Poveda´s life and of his legacy, highlighting the witness of Canada TA members, now celebrating 10 years of presence in the area.
Al this was happening as the film POVEDA was being aired in the Salt and Light TV.
Earlier in the day, on the other side of the Atlantic Ocean, a special Mass was celebrated near Madrid, where the relics of St. Pedro Poveda are venerated. Cardenal Carlos Osoro, Archbishop of Madrid presided the Eucharist that was celebrated on the altar that stands over Poveda´s relics.
He invited all who followed the Mass via YouTube to live as Poveda in truth, freedom and hope, paying attention to reality around and offering responses.
Following the Mass, a short video was shown, announcing the three-year preparations for the 100-anniversary of the Pontifical Approval of the TA in 1924. The video was produced by Karina Anglada.
After the video, there was a presentation of the Second Epistolary Volume of St Pedro Poveda, containing his letters from 1918 to 1924 . ( A.Cantero)