Armida Barelli – A woman beyond her time

#Armida #Barelli #woman #time

On May 21 last, in the parish of Santa Maria delle Stelle in Comiso, the diocesan conference entitled: Armida Barelli: a woman beyond her time was held.
Emanuela Gitto, national vice president of the Youth Sector of Catholic Action, introduced us to the figure of this woman, proclaimed blessed on 30 April.

The conference was organized by the Diocese of Ragusa, by the diocesan Catholic Action, by the parish of the Mother Church of Santa Maria delle Stelle in Comiso and by the parish AC.
Thanks to the interest of the diocesan president of the CA, Rosaro Schininà, it was also possible to visit the traveling exhibition created by the Toniolo Institute, to make known the figure of Armida Barelli.

The conference was included in the celebrations that, every year, on the third Sunday of May are held in Comiso in honor of Maria SS.
Addolorata, to achieve two important objectives: to make CA “Action” and therefore to leave the sacristy, as Pope Francis wants, and to share the beauty and the good, with all the others, as in a family.
In a world full of influencers, bloggers, in which everyone has to say and complain about everything, we wanted to share the principles, values ​​and creative and far-sighted impulses of a woman, Armida Barelli, who managed to be a forerunner of that movement which has led women to have an active role in society and in the Church and which has not yet ended, as Gitto pointed out.

The speaker at the beginning of her speech underlined that “the parish is the beating heart of the association, the place where we live the ordinariness of our being lay, where most of our experience of faith passes.
If everyone looks at their own path of faith, at their own path of life, most of this is linked to the parish “.
These words contain everything that leads CA to participate in the organization of the feast together with all the parish groups.

The party, after the pandemic blackout, is the place for the rebirth of relationships.
Young and very young, involved in “doing”, give their best! Because sometimes words are little compared to the facts of those who, devoted to Our Lady, commit themselves every year in one of the different areas of the organization of the feast: going from door to door for begging means learning to ask, to to be humble and to welcome whoever is behind the door; organizing a choir that accompanies the important moments presupposes dedication and the exercise of authority if, in the end, the result must be full harmony and unanimous prayer to Mary; set up the main altar, where the simulacrum of Maria SS.
Sorrowful, for the “unveiled” wait, it requires passion and skill, so that every year the “unveiled” one, gradually unveiling the face of the Virgin of Sorrows dear to the “matricrisiacs”, may arouse new amazement.

But the party is also something else: attention to the needy and the collection of basic necessities, which the parish S.
Vincenzo distributes; setting up virtuous circles involving important institutions, such as schools, because it is essential to always have children at the center.
In fact, within the celebrations, the family of the late Dr.
Turi Schirmo, who died prematurely, is giving away a scholarship, named after him, for the purchase of books for the first year of high school, for the most beautiful composition, among all those presented by third-grade students, on a theme of significant social and moral value.

In this swarm of commitment and industriousness, in which everyone puts their talents to good use, the CA proposes their own, that is, being training and adds contents to those already present in an event attended in various ways by many people.

A conference on Armida Barelli served to propose a woman, now blessed, who lived her time to the full without disdaining to take care of it.
Strengthened by a Franciscan spirituality, thanks to her friendship with Agostino Gemelli (co-founder with Barelli of the Catholic University of the Sacred Heart) “you understand – reports Gitto – that what God had in mind for her could also be realized in the world ( not necessarily with monastic life).
A revolutionary idea, that is, an ordinary secularism, a lay apostolate ».
Already, before the Second Vatican Council, in 1918 you promoted the idea that everyone can participate in the life of the Church by virtue of baptism.

On the mandate of the Pope, Barelli toured Italy to create the “Female Catholic Youth”.
She invited women to leave the house and above all to get educated because “we are a force in Italy, we women” she loved to repeat, promoting the vote for women.
Revolutionary ideas if we think of the historical context and that other movements, which fought for the vote of women, wanted them to be far from the Church and religion, because they were pointed out as causes of female submission.
Instead, she wanted educated women to make a conscious contribution to society and for this she used the tools of the time to boost the associative press, even adapting it to members, even illiterate or blind.
Finally, always animated by the idea that everyone can participate, through the Opera della Regalità, she created the leaflet of the mass in Italian, so that everyone really participated in mass consciously.
Everything she did, including the foundation of the Catholic University of the Sacred Heart, contributed to the realization of an idea: trained Catholics had to make a concrete contribution to the changing society of that time.

How can we fail to see the relevance of his message today in a time equally changing and full of contradictions? How not to collect his legacy, and as responsible Catholics contribute to improving society, putting God and human dignity back at the center, eliminating superstructures that make us lose sight of the essential with classifications to combat stereotypes that do not exist now.

Giovannella Incardona

Tags: catholic action, blessed, mother church of santa maria delle stelle, Armida Barelli, diocesan convention


Editing “Together” comes out with n ° 0 on 8 December 1984.
Since then the editorial staff has been the “training house” for many young people who have collaborated with passion and commitment.

News from Sicily 2022-07-05 09:37:00

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