Welcome visitors

On Sunday 4th August at Manchester Airport we welcomed Fr. Andrea and the brothers of the Irish House, arriving from Italy.

On the Monday we started an intense day of work with each of the “Irish” Lads working together with a “Kendal” Lad.

We also had the possibility to have confession, or a simple moment of sharing, with Fr. Andrea.  In the afternoon the unmissable football game for most while some brothers made (also unmissable!) pizzas for dinner. Thanks to the good weather we ate in the courtyard in the company of some friends of our fraternity.  The atmosphere was very joyful.

On Tuesday we decided to dedicate most of the day to prayer, starting with Holy Mass in the morning.  We then prayed the walking rosary on Scout Scar and in the evening we lived a deep moment of Eucharistic Adoration on top of the hill behind the house.

Thanks to the Community for this visit, for the possibility to know new and old brothers and to receive new courage for our respective walks.

We entrust to you Mary our desires and our vocations.

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Festival of Life – extra day for English speakers!

On the Monday following the main weekend of the festival those of us who fitted the category of “English speakers” – which included people from England, Ireland, America, Malta, Singapore, Australia…. – were fortunate to have the opportunity of an extra day, hosted by the house at Cherasco.  As befitted an “English” day the weather, having been hot and sunny all weekend, broke and it poured with rain all day! Our hosts coped brilliantly with not only finding they had many more guests than expected, but also having to accommodate us all indoors. We enjoyed fantastic home made pizzas for lunch, and celebrated the 1st anniversary of Don Marco’s ordination as a priest.

We are very grateful to have the gift of this extra time to spend in prayer together and in catching up with family and friends, including several who were previously in our Kendal house and have moved on the other houses and we extend huge thanks, and congratulations, to “Cenacolo Cherasco” for the lovely day we spent there.

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Festival of Life 2019

Once again this year some of us received the gift to participate in the Festival of Life in Saluzzo from 11th-14th July. The event started with a greeting from Fr. Stefano and Holy Mass celebrated by Fr. Pino Isoardi. He focused on the importance of testifying to the faith and to prayer, following the example of those who helped people less fortunate and those who lost their way.

During Friday we listened to the testimonies of some of the priests of our Community who testified to the great faith and strength of Mother Elvira and other testimonies of boys and girls in the Community.  During the evening we lived a moving time of Eucharistic Adoration with the personal intentions of some of the responsibles of the houses, of the priests, and members of the families living in the Community.

On Saturday we listened to some testimonies of people from outside the Community about the importance of cultivating our faith and staying close to the prayer for those leaving the Community also. The bishop of Saluzzo confirmed some boys and girls of the Community. The day ended with the recital “Seguimi” (follow me), this year enriched with many choral scenes, a spectacle which became a testimony of faith, hope and prayer as in the motto of this year’s festival – We are Witnesses (Acts 3:15).

Sunday, the tent was packed for Holy Mass in the morning, and then in the afternoon there was the final greeting from Fr. Stefano, with also a lot of songs, dancing…..

Thank you Lord Jesus for the life of Mother Elvira; thank you for this gift. Thank you for your daily guidance on the good path to become witnesses of new life, faith and hope.

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Cathedral Celebration, Lancaster 16th June

On Trinity Sunday we had the opportunity to meet the Bishop of Lancaster Diocese, Bishop Paul Swarbrick, in the splendid cathedral in Lancaster.  One of the brothers was invited to sponsor the son of friends of the Community at his Confirmation.

Bishop Paul took great care to talk to the young people and to explain the importance of this day.  He emphasised the great gift they were being given from the Holy Spirit. At the end of the ceremony the usual photographs were taken and he promised to visit our community soon.

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Open Day Spring 2019

P1060960cThis year our weekend started on Friday again with a meeting of prayer in the Monastery of Our Lady of Hyning with our families, and with Fr Massimo Rigoni and Brother Konrad from Saluzzo.

On Saturday we welcomed our loved ones and also some close friends of our Community for the Family Day: Rosary, Eucharistic Adoration and Holy Mass for the feast of the English Martyrs. We met for lunch in a joyful atmosphere especially thanks to the magic tricks of Fr Massimo. We spent the afternoon with some free time and after the Divine Mercy chaplet we listened to some testimonies relating to this feast day. Our get-together ended with a very Italian meal of pizza.

Finally arrived Sunday with the actual Open Day. We welcomed our guests with the essential refreshments and then we gathered in the barn to recite the Holy Rosary: as a small gift we had made a video of the walking rosary with our thanksgiving intentions for this new life. After a deep and moving Eucharistic Adoration we had a moment of songs and dance and then we ate lunch: lasagne and chilli con carne.

In the afternoon the Divine Mercy chaplet, some very touching testimonies from Damian, Martin, Patryk and one of our friends Clare.

A tea break finished the day in which we said goodbye to our brothers Mateusz , transferred to Poland, and Louis who was leaving the Community after ending his walk.

We want to say thank you to all the people who participated in the Open Day, thanks for your affection…. to all the friends and benefactors, the priests close to our Community, the nuns of Hyning Convent and all those who helped to make the Open Day happen.

Thank you to the Community because they again confirmed their commitment to us by sending Fr Massimo and Bro Konrad to be with us. A special prayer for all the Martyrs past and present on this their feast day, for all those who lost their lives to defend their faith in the risen Jesus, and for all those persecuted for their faith; Our Lady Queen of Martyrs intercede for them and for each one of us.

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Celebrating and enjoying Easter

… with Fr Chris.

We now look forward to seeing our families tomorrow, and to welcoming all our family & friends at our Open Day on Sunday (5th May).

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Parents’ Day at Boarbank Hall

The Community does not ask for any “payment” from the families of those who are welcomed into the various houses but what is asked for is the commitment to conversion, a walk in the Christian way of life parallel to that which their son or daughter is doing within the community. Experience over the years has shown that the rebirth of the lads and girls depends also on the commitment of their parents and that they discover the importance of the family which is why the Parent Meetings take place. It is important that as many parents and family members do attend whenever possible.

The annual Cenacolo Parents Retreat for UK parents was held on Saturday 23rd February at Boarbank Hall.

On arrival we were warmly welcomed by the Sisters who run the facility with plenty of tea, coffee and biscuits to refresh us. Others from the Liverpool group, together with parents from around the country, were in attendance.

Boarbank Feb 2019
The day then commenced with everyone introducing themselves followed by DVDs. The first DVD was of the community in Italy about 15 years ago doing a play about the 4 seasons which was very funny and had everyone laughing. The play was acted out by girls from the Community and some of their children. The girls who took part successfully turned their lives around through the Cenacolo way of life.

It truly showcased the talent and creativity of those within the Cenacolo Community given the time and space to be themselves without the pressures and distractions of the modern world and oppression of addiction. It also showed that although the spiritual side of community is at its very heart, those in community also have time to enjoy themselves!

The next DVD showed Mother Elvira at the 1st Anniversary Mass for the opening of the Cenacolo house in Kendal, with Father Michael and the Bishop in attendance. One of the girls who had been in the previous DVD acted as interpreter for Sr. Elvira.  Sr. Elvira spoke with love, warmth and humour of the boys and girls and illustrated her wisdom around the ethos of the Cenacolo Community.

The afternoon session provided a chance to hear testimonies from two parents who had been to the “Cherasco“ house in Italy for experience and also from two of the young women who had been part of the Cenacolo experience. One had only recently returned home to England after five years and will be starting back at University next year. Both girls were fantastic examples of how, with the help of God, they had turned their lives around for the better and left addiction far behind them.

Following the testimonies session it was time for the group to move to the Chapel for rosary and Mass which was celebrated by Fr. Michael. We were able to include our Cenacolo prayers within the Mass. After Mass, time was set aside for those who wished to take part in adoration in front of the beautiful tabernacle.

After a final cup of tea it was time to wish everyone well and a final goodbye until we meet up again. Travelling back to Liverpool everyone felt uplifted with renewed hope in their hearts and thankful to all who had made the journey and taken part to make it such a joyous day.

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