St. Annibale comes to Luisa Piccarreta’s house again
On Sunday February 4, 2018 – http://www.luisapiccarretaofficial.org/news/st-annibale-comes-to-luisa-piccarretas-house-again/320
It was with great emotion and joy that the parish community of S. Maria Greca
and the Little Children of the Divine Will welcomed the relics of St. Annibale Maria Di Francia
at Luisa Piccarreta’s house.
The relics were brought this morning at 10.00, almost recalling what happened when Luisa was still alive.
St. Annibale was linked to Luisa by a spiritual fraternal and sincere friendship that began in 1910 when Canon Maria di Francia met her for the first time. He went to her house after he became aware of the fame of spirituality that surrounded her.
For seventeen years, their spiritual friendship grew ever stronger, until the day of Father Annibale’s birth into heaven on June 1, 1927
“It is just great that our first meeting starts right here, where we gather, also where Father Annibale met and supported Luisa several times, celebrated Mass, prayed …” With these words the Rogationist Father Angelo Sardone, who brought the relics with Father Filippo, began his talk and greeted all the faithful who were there to pay homage to the Saint from Messina.
Many times Father Annibale went to Luisa’s house; and in his last years, the Archbishop of Trani appointed him Ecclesiastical Censor of Luisa’s writings. As he met her, the Divine Will penetrated more and more his soul and the more Father Annibale entered that spirituality, the more he became aware of the need to spread the writings:
“It is really necessary to make these writings known to the world now, and I believe they will do a great deal of good” he commented in a letter. In fact he immediately began to print the “Hour of the Passion” and worked hard to publish Luisa’s writings, but he left, however, unfinished the work because of his death.
The esteem that Father Annibale placed in Luisa was reciprocated by the confidence that Luisa had for him. In fact, she was deeply impressed by the wisdom, prudence and holiness of Di Francia and always addressed him with words of gratitude: “The Lord will reward you greatly for the work of the Hour of the Passion, may it be one of the most beautiful gems that will shine above your head.”
And when she learned the news of Father Annibale’s death she felt tortured because of suffering: she poured out in tears, but in the Fiat commended to Jesus that blessed soul:
“He was the only one left to me, to whom I could open my poor soul. How well he could understand me – it was to a saint that I would entrust myself, who had very much comprehended all the value of what Jesus had told me about the Divine Will… but – Fiat! Fiat! Fiat! everything ends down here.” (Vol.22 – June 1, 1927)
St. Annibale, a soul who was dear not only to Luisa but also to Jesus who granted him to shine in the Light of the Divine Will, in fact, in the same passage of the diary He comforted Luisa: “My daughter, courage, you must know that everything which that soul, so dear to Me, has done, all the knowledges he has known about my Will, have caused him to enclose as much light within his soul. So, each additional knowledge is a greater light that he possesses… Diving into the eternal light of his Creator, he found himself in the Celestial Fatherland, in which he will continue his mission about my Will, assisting everything himself, from Heaven.”
May these words be an encouragement for us to be aware of the great good that we acquire through the knowledge of the Divine Will. The example of St. Annibale could lead us to internalize them in our hearts so that, like Him, we can shine in the eternal Light of the Divine Fiat
With this hope we are preparing to experience this important week of spirituality, rich in teachings and moments of prayer that will end Saturday, February 10 with the consecration of our hearts and the entrustment of the entire community to St Annibale.
Statue of Luisa Piccarreta at the Orphanage of St. Anthony in Corato
From the Book of Heaven – October 7, 1928
Now, in order to be able to say what Jesus told me, I have to make a brief mention – that here in Corato a House has been founded, which was wanted and started by the venerable memory of Father Canonical Annibale Maria Di Francia, and which his children, faithful to the will of their founder, have executed and given the name of House of the Divine Will, as the venerable father wanted. And he wanted me to enter this House; and on the first day of its opening, by their goodness, his sons and daughters, the reverend mothers, came to take me and brought me into a room which is such that, as the door of this room is opened, I can see the Tabernacle, I can listen to Holy Mass, I am just under the gazes of my Jesus in the Sacrament. O! how happy I feel, that from now on, if Jesus wants me to continue to write, I will write always keeping one eye on the Tabernacle and the other on the paper I write on. Therefore, I pray You, my Love, to assist me and to give me the strength to make the sacrifice that You Yourself want.
So, as this House was about to be opened, one could see people, nuns, little girls – people coming and going, all in motion. I felt all impressed, and my Sweet Jesus, moving in my interior, told me: “My daughter, this group of people whom you see all in motion for the opening of the House of my Divine Will is symbolic of that group of people when I wanted to be born in Bethlehem, and the shepherds were coming and going, to visit Me, a little Baby. This pointed out to all the certainty of my birth. In the same way, this group of people, all in motion, points out the rebirth of the Kingdom of my Divine Will. Look at how all of Heaven echoes my birth, when the Angels, celebrating it, announced Me to the shepherds, and putting them in motion, made them keep coming to Me, and I recognized in them the first fruits of the Kingdom of my Redemption. So now, in this group of people, of little girls and nuns, I recognize the beginning of the Kingdom of my Divine Will. O! how my Heart exults and rejoices, and all of Heaven makes feast. Just as the Angels celebrated my birth, so do they celebrate the beginning of the rebirth of my Fiat in the midst of creatures. But, look at how my birth was more neglected, more poor – I had not even one priest near Me, but only poor shepherds. On the other hand, at the beginning of my Volition, there is not only a group of nuns and little girls from out of town, and a people rushing up to celebrate the opening, but there is an archbishop and priests representing my Church. This is symbol and announcement to all, that the Kingdom of my Divine Volition will be formed with more magnificence, with greater pomp and splendor than the very Kingdom of my Redemption; and everyone, kings and princes, bishops and priests and peoples, will know the Kingdom of my Fiat and will possess It. Therefore, you too, celebrate this day in which my sighs and sacrifices, and yours, to make my Divine Will known, see the first dawn and hope for the Sun of my Divine Fiat to soon rise.”
St. Annibale and Luisa Piccarreta – Two Souls United In the Divine Will
“These days will surely be full of grace for everyone“. With those words, on Sunday February 4, Father Angelo Sardone, Rogationist of the community of Bari, began his talk when the relics of Saint Annibale Maria di Francia arrived at the house of the servant of God Luisa Piccarreta. Yes, they were really days of grace and blessing and we can confirm now at the conclusion of the week of spirituality that was conceived in the context of the initiatives for the 90th anniversary of the opening of the House of the Daughters of Divine Zeal.
Saint Hannibal, with the presence of his relics, spiritually enriched the city of Corato staying for eight days at the Church Santa Maria Greca, where the tomb of the Servant of God Luisa Piccarreta is guarded. It was indeed touching to be simultaneously in front of two models of holiness linked together by an intense spiritual relationship, and united – we could say – by one single mission: to live and spread the Divine Will.
“A crusade of prayer and knowledge“, Father Angelo defined the intense program of the event. It was characterized daily by moments of prayer and formative and spiritual activities that allowed us to know more about the figure and the work of the Saint from Messina in correlation especially with Luisa, the little daughter of the Divine Will.
The venture of Annibale Maria Di Francia started in 1878 in the Avignone district, the worst slum in Messina at that time; the meeting with Francesco Zancone, a blind beggar changed his life. Father Annibale was rich, from a noble family and was admired for his culture. He could have had an extraordinary career, but he left everything and went into the midst of the slums of Messina. There he worked incessantly for the temporal and spiritual good of his neighbor, through the education and sanctification of children and boys, evangelization and relief to the poorest.
He was enraptured, since adolescence, by the gospel expression: “The harvest is plentiful, but the laborers are few; therefore pray earnestly to the Lord of the harvest to send out laborers into his harvest “(Mt 9:38; Lk 10: 2), and for this noble cause he spent all his energies.
The Rogate (Ask) thus became his life program. To this end, he founded two religious Congregations: the Rogationists and the Daughters of the Divine Zeal, and promoted numerous initiatives to spread among the faithful the awareness of the need to pray intensely for vocations.
He himself deeply loved his priesthood; He lived it consistently, and was fully convinced that it is only through the work of numerous holy priests that humanity can be saved.
For living and spreading this charism with admirable zeal, he was recognized by the Church as” distinguished Apostle of Prayer for Vocations” and Pope John Paul II called him “authentic forerunner and zealous master of modern vocation ministry”.
His message is particularly timely today, in the third millennium. The “global village” that our planet has become, confined by the communications network and political, economic and social interests, feels an urgent need of good, hard-working apostles who work for the Kingdom..
Priests, consecrated persons and all Christians are the “laborers of the Gospel” and are the fruit of prayer. It is necessary to pray to the Lord of the harvest so that many people, responding with their own generous FIAT to the call, can become workers of the harvest, new “apostles of the Divine Will“- as Jesus himself call them in Luisa’s writings – ready to work for salvation and sanctification by communicating to all the precious truths of the Divine Will.
“…once I have completed everything, I will entrust my Kingdom to my ministers, so that, like second apostles of the Kingdom of my Will, they may be the criers of It”. (Vol. XX – November 6,1926)
Therefore, we can see how St. Annibale’ s “Rogate” and Luisa’s “Fiat” interweave and walk in unison; Luisa and St. Annibale, in the plans of the Divine Providence, mutually helped and influenced each other, by communicating to each other the charisms with which the Lord had enriched their souls for the good of the Church. Pope Benedict XVI said “true friendship, in addition to being a relationship between people, it is a mutual help and spiritual journey. This is a characteristic of Saints: they cultivate friendship because it is one of the noblest manifestations of the human heart and has something divine about it”.
“Do you think that the coming of Father Di Francia, who shows so much interest and who has taken to heart the publication of what regards my Will, came by chance? No, no – I Myself disposed it. It is a providential act of the Supreme Will that wants him as first apostle of the Divine Fiat and proclaimer of It. And since he happens to be the founder of an order, it is easier for him to approach bishops, priests and people, also within his own institute, in order to proclaim the Kingdom of my Will. This is why I assist him so much and I give him special light, because in order to understand my Will it takes great graces – not little lights, but sun, to comprehend a Divine, Holy and Eternal Will, as well as great disposition on the part of the one to whom this office is entrusted”. (Vol. XX – November 6,1926)
The ministers are cooperators, guardians and depositaries of the knowledge, goods and prodigies that are in the Divine Will. So, just as He had the priesthood before His coming in order to prepare the people, and the priesthood of His Church in order to confirm His coming and everything He did and said, so – Jesus said- “I will I have the priesthood of the Kingdom of my Will”.
The many surprising truths revealed to Luisa will be the inexhaustible fount from which all will draw celestial life and terrestrial happiness “…how happy they will feel – those who, with yearning, will drink in large gulps from these founts of my knowledges – Jesus said – because they contain the virtue of bringing the life of Heaven, and of banishing any unhappiness”. For this reason “I enjoy that more of my ministers get to know that there is this treasure so great, of making known the Kingdom of my Divine Will; and I use this to form the first priests of my coming Kingdom of my Fiat. My daughter, it is a great necessity to form the first priests; they will serve Me like the Apostles served Me to form my Church; and the ones who will occupy themselves with these writings in order to publish them, putting them out to print them – to make them known, will be the new evangelists of the Kingdom of my Supreme Will”. (Vol. XXIII, January 18, 1928)
It is precisely to support these new apostles of the Kingdom, within the Association Luisa Piccarreta a mission was born and takes the name Spiritual Mother for Priests. The souls who are part of it aim to spiritually adopt a priest, praying for him and sharing with him, in the Divine Will, his priestly life, a life of offering to Christ and to His Church, so that the flock entrusted to him may walk towards the Kingdom of the Fiat Voluntas Tua already on earth. And it was a very great moment on Saturday evening, when during the celebration of Holy Mass some members of the Mission wished to join the Union of Prayer for Vocations, according to the spirit that animated the life and work of St. Annibale sanctioning, also in this case, the profound spiritual bond between the Little Children of the Divine Will and the daughters and sons of Father Annibale.