I suppose you are all wondering how we are getting on here in Belmonte, Spain. We continue to take care of the boarding school of Mary Immaculate. This year, the Community consists of: Sr. María, Sr. Estela, Sr. Megan and Sr. Hope. At the moment we also have two novices with us: Sr. Kelai and Sr. Ana María Lapeña. There are 21 girls in the school this year. We will tell you a bit about what we have been up to in these Castilian lands.
Recently we went with the girls on a trip to Valencia. In the morning we visited the Shrine of Our Lady of the Forsaken, patroness of the city. There we went to Mass and there was also the posibility of going to confession. In the church there is a very beautiful statue of Our Lady. In the statue she is gathering children beneath her cape, protecting them. The youngest girls in our group were convinced that they were the ones represented in the image. Then we went to see the Cathedral. Providentially, we ran into Mari Carmen Chimeno and Africa, who are members of Home and live in Valencia. They volunteered to stay with the girls for awhile whilst the sisters venerated the Holy Grail. For us it was a gift and a great grace from the Lord.
Afterwards we ate some sandwiches and visited the Oceanographic Museum, which is the largest aquarium in Europe. There we saw the greatness of God's creation. We passed through a giant aquarium through a glass tunnel. You could be looking at the fish for hours, and still continue to find new and different kinds. What an imagination God has! There was also a beautiful performance of dolphins and two girls could even touch them.
Another highlight of the year so far was a play prepared for All Saints Day. The saints chosen this year were the holy Cure of Ars, Blessed Kateri Tekakwitha and St. Therese of Lisieux. We did the best we could, within our capabilities... and we had a great time. The girls loved it and had a lot of fun. It was also good for them to get to know the lives of the saints.
Another good experience for the girls was the march for life on October 17th in Madrid. It was an unforgettable experience for the 7 or 8 girls who joined a group going by bus from Mota del Cuervo. They were amazed and happy to discover how many people, many of them young, think like they do. They met up with the sisters from Getafe, which was also a great joy for them.
We want to finish by taking this opportunity to congratulate everyone for the feast of the Immaculate Conception. As she always has her arms stretched out to everyone, we ask her to bring us towards Her son and that she teach us how to live this advent well.
May the Lord and Our Lady bless you all.