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Greetings from the Confidentia Shrine and Happy New Year!

The new decade and year are just two weeks old and we may still be in the habit of writing 2019 on our checks and letters. But let’s take a closer look at 2020 since we can discover a lot of meaning in it.

To have 20/20 vision means to see clearly without lenses. The 20/20 TV news magazine proudly claims that their reports give clarity of insight. And those of us old enough may remember Johnny Nash for his 1972 lyrics: “I can see clearly now; the rain is gone. I can see all obstacles in my way. Gone are the dark clouds that had me blind. It’s gonna be a bright, bright, bright, bright sunshiny day!”

What message bears the Year 2020 for us as Joyful Apostles Living the Covenant? We recall that our father and founder, Joseph Kentenich, came to a decision on January 20, 1942, which is difficult to understand at first sight. Indeed, it took more than 20/20 vision for his followers to align themselves with his death-leap of faith to go to the concentration camp in Dachau and not to take advantage of another physical exam which may have declared him unfit for camp due to his advanced age and a lung disease. Only with a supernatural vision and a profound faith in God’s providence can one muster the courage to act against one’s nature and the advice of all his friends and counselors, to freely choose a life of hardship, starvation, and perhaps even death.

And what’s the message for us? As joyful apostles living the covenant, we are invited to deepen our covenant of love and to make the supernatural vision of our founder our own. This new level of surrender will have an effect on our daily life. This month’s example of a joyful apostle living the covenant can inspire all of us.

With greetings from the Confidentia Shrine,

Schoenstatt Sisters of Mary

 

Joyful Apostles, Living the Covenant

As eucharistic ministers in a hospital setting, it could be easy to assume that the volunteers would look like the most haggard, stressed out, and joyless group of people walking the floors. However, this has not been my experience.

Arriving by 9:30 a.m. at the hospital on a Sunday after having participated in holy mass and receiving the holy Eucharist, I experience a heightened sense of well-being, peace, and joy. O what a joy, to be able to provide the best sustenance ever, the most holy Eucharist, to the sick, those in pain, the lonely, those experiencing anxiety or fear, and even those who are already mourning the loss of a loved one! Why such joy, one could ask? Because joy is contagious and even during pain and suffering people share in my joy and I in theirs as they receive the holy Eucharist from me. Now in holy communion, we are joyfully prepared and at peace for whatsoever Jesus may have in store for us!

In my case, with the help of our MTA of Schoenstatt with whom I have sealed a covenant of love, I continue this joyfully even after fifteen years. I made my life consecration as a member of the single professional women’s league in Corpus Christi, Texas. Of course, as a single lady, I find myself with more time and can independently make my decisions. Yet I always ask for our MTA’s intercession with her Son who is at all times tangibly there for me!

Mina Valdez, PhD

 

 

December 15, 2019

 

Greetings from the Confidentia Shrine,

The pink candle I lit! It’s Gaudete Sunday! High point of the Advent season, reminding us to be joyful because Christmas is near! Gaudete, a personal call for us as joyful apostles, living the covenant.

In his letter to the Philippians (4:4f) St. Paul advises us: “Rejoice in the Lord always! I say it again, Rejoice! Everyone should see how unselfish you are. The Lord is near. Dismiss all anxiety from your minds.”

Dismiss all anxiety!? Amidst all the still to dos on my Christmas list? Amidst the apprehension that I may lose my job? When anticipating the possible tensions overshadowing the holidays? When waiting for the results of my medical tests? When …

All of which St. Paul had no idea … or did he? We know that St. Paul endured many hardships for Christ’s sake, but he also knew that it is unbecoming for an apostle to be pessimistic, gloomy, negative, and overly anxious.

As joyful apostles we are united in a covenant of love with Mary, the Queen of Apostles. Her Advent gave her plenty reasons to be anxious: when receiving Gabriel’s message, when facing Joseph thereafter, or her parents, or the gossip of her neighbors in Nazareth. Moreover, the long journey to Bethlehem, the lack of empathy of the innkeepers, and her lack of the basic necessities to welcome her child into this world.

Mary, our MTA, knows our anxieties and she wants to transform them into opportunities to grow in a deeper love for her child. The coming ten days will give us opportunities to join her in a posada or shelter seeking. May these be occasions for us to open our heart for the divine child, the true reason of our joy!

Wishing you continued Advent joys and blessings and a truly Merry Christmas,

Schoenstatt Sisters of Mary

 

 

 

November 15, 2019

 

Greetings from the Confidentia Shrine!

Almost a month has gone by since many of us gathered to celebrate the 60th anniversary of this shrine! What a glorious day it was! People came from all over Texas and beyond to give thanks to the Triune God for the gift of Schoenstatt and for the first Schoenstatt Shrine on Texan soil. We prayed, played, enjoyed a delicious meal, and visited with one another just like family. And we truly are a family united in the covenant of love. This was a reality many shared with us during the day as well as in their messages afterwards. We sisters give thanks to all who came and continue coming to the shrine and we thank especially for the countless volunteers and benefactors who made the jubilee an unforgettable blessed feast.

Shortly before the shrine jubilee, the delegates of the league branches gathered in the shadow of the Confidentia Shrine for a weekend of sharing, learning, and discerning. As always, this convention aimed at finding the motto which will guide the Texas Schoenstatt Family throughout the coming year.  The delegates took their responsibility seriously. They were inspired by the fact that next year we will commemorate the centennial of the Apostolic League of Schoenstatt and also the centennial of the first women joining Schoenstatt. After a few hours of deliberations in small group discussions and a plenary session, the core team, consisting of a representative from each of the league branches met after an hour of adoration to formulate the motto which reads: Joyful Apostles, Living the Covenant!

Throughout the year we will ponder different aspects of this beautiful motto; so please stay tuned! For now, please don’t forget to honor our founder, Father Joseph Kentenich whose birthday we will celebrate tomorrow with a sign of gratitude for having been the first joyful apostle to live the covenant of love!

Happy Thanksgiving to y’all,

Schoenstatt Sisters of Mary

 

 

 

October 15, 2019

Greetings from the Confidentia Shrine!

In just a few days, on October 18, we will gather with the international Schoenstatt Family to renew our covenant of love with our Mother Thrice Admirable, Queen, and Victress of Schoenstatt. Most of us will do so in the home shrine or with the local Schoenstatt Family at a wayside shrine. Some of us have the privilege to be close to a daughter shrine. Wherever we will be, the Blessed Mother, our covenant partner is awaiting us.

It may be a few months or more than fifty years since we sealed our covenant of love with her in the shrine and if we are sincerely living out of this relationship, then we surely have a story to tell of the countless nudges, signs of consolation, and encouragement we have received. Father Kentenich liked to talk about “the covenant of love with one another and among one another”. He also interpreted the relationship between the Schoenstatt Family and the Church as a covenant of love. Dilexit Ecclesiam, Beacon on the New Shore! Every day anew, our annual motto encourages us to love the Church as Father Kentenich did, and by our witness light the way for our darkened world.

In only four days, on Saturday, October 19, 2019, we will gather to celebrate the sixty years of our MTA, our Queen of Confidence’s faithfulness, to her shrine and the Texas Schoenstatt Family. This first Schoenstatt Shrine on Texan soil was built with countless contributions to the capital of grace and the sure confidence that she wanted to settle here and dispense abundant graces.

“With certainty, the key to unlock the heart of the Blessed Mother is confidence.” These words of Father Kentenich can be experienced daily in our shrine. Please come and join us in thanking the Triune God for the gift of our shrine and the covenant of love.

Looking forward to welcoming you!

Schoenstatt Sisters of Mary

 

 

 

 

September 15, 2019

Greetings from the Confidentia Shrine!

Today we commemorate the day when our father and founder, Father Joseph Kentenich, entered eternity. On Sunday, September 15, 1968, the memorial of Our Lady of Sorrows, his life was completed after having celebrated his first holy Mass in the Church of the Holy Trinity in Schoenstatt, Germany. He was almost 83 years old; yet he had been as busy as a man in his prime with travels, meetings, and correspondence with his worldwide Schoenstatt Family. He had even planned to come to Texas. We, today, can hardly imagine the sorrow his death caused in the hearts of his followers.

In 1967, he sent a gift to the Texas Schoenstatt family. It is a unique image of God, the Father, and a harbinger, as it were, of the visit of Father Kentenich.  It reminds us that in God, Father Kentenich remains with us and is present in his new mode of existence. We are grateful for this gift and legacy of our father and founder which has found its permanent place in the Confidentia Shrine.

The Father Eye is also prominently displayed on the logo. It invites everyone to join us for the 60th anniversary of the Confidentia Shrine on October 19.

Numerous people have confidently entrusted their prayer intentions to the intercession of Father Kentenich. His cause for beatification is in process and in need of a miracle in order to be completed. We encourage you to pray one of the novenas featuring Father Kentenich.

Your Schoenstatt Sisters of Mary

August 15, 2019

Greetings from the Confidentia Shrine,

Today, we celebrate the Solemnity of the Assumption of Our Lady into heaven. This youngest dogma of the Catholic Church, proclaimed on November 1, 1950, concludes the Church’s teaching on Mary: At the end of her earthly pilgrimage, God brought her home into eternity. Her being in heaven with body and soul is a unique gift of God’s grace, but it is also due to her vocation and the loyalty by which she lived each it each day of her life.

At the same time, the Blessed Mother’s assumption marks a new beginning for her. Mary is now in eternal life. She is enveloped by the joy and blessedness that comes from the encounter with God and with all who are in communion with this loving God. Being in heaven doesn’t mean that our earthly work is done. Quite the contrary, Mary’s mission can now assume its universal dimensions: “Taken up to heaven”–as Vatican II reminds us–“she did not lay aside her salvific duty … By her maternal love she cares for the brethren of her son who still journey on earth.” This is what we experience when we visit the Confidentia Shrine. Our Mother and Queen welcomes us, offers us graces of home, inner transformation, and mission zeal. The many petitions in the jar are a silent but eloquent witness that Our Lady, since her assumption into heaven is now able to exercise fully her motherhood in the order of grace, without interruption. Her powerful intercession at the throne of God gives us confidence in her. Many of us have experienced this at numerous times.

But let us not forget to ask her today especially for the grace to one day be united with her in heaven. In light of our ultimate home, may we also grow in our understanding that some of our needs and intentions are answered contrary to our expectations so we can understand better the transience of all earthly things. In Heavenwards, Father Kentenich teaches us to pray:

Teach me to live each day so that my dying
becomes easy, as befits an heir of heaven.
Teach me to judge myself each night in such a way
that after death I may see you and God.

May our Confidentia Queen continue to accompany us on our earthly pilgrimage and increase our longing for our heavenly home.

Happy and blessed feast day,

Schoenstatt Sisters of Mary

 

 

 

 

 

Greetings from the Confidentia Shrine,

Those who visited our jubilee shrine recently may have noticed that it is adorned with a new banner. It invites us to gather in Lamar to celebrate the 60 years of Confidentia Shrine blessings.

The logo on the banner captures exactly that. The blue shrine graphic highlights a golden Father symbol, a special treasure for the Texas Schoenstatt Family. The palm tree identifies the locality of the shrine on the shore of the Texas Riviera. The golden number 60 reminds us of the Blessed Mother’s loyalty to this place of grace as it weathered many storms, tornados, and also listening to the innumerable heartaches of spiritual storms and dangers.

Our Confidentia Queen has drawn us to her cradle of sanctity where she accepted our contributions to the capital of grace, a prerequisite for her fruitfulness from the shrine.

Our Gift in Return for the celebration of the jubilee on October 19 will be the renovated campus surrounding the shrine. Countless hours of physical labor have been offered by you ever since Harvey. Likewise, many of you have given monetary donations. All is very much appreciated and we sisters pray that your generosity will be abundantly rewarded by our Confidentia Queen.

Look once more at the Father symbol. It was Sr. M. Joselinde, who received it from Father Kentenich in 1967. He had kept the symbol in his office for three days prior to giving it to her. He told her: It is a beautiful eye, a work of art. But it must always be a symbol for a reality: “The Father sees his child. … Father sees me, Father loves me, Father knows me.”

These words can be a lifelong program for the covenant partners of our Confidentia Mother and Queen.

Why not try it out?!

Your Schoenstatt Sisters of Mary

 

June 28, 2019

Greetings from the Confidentia Shrine,

And welcome back to ordinary time! That’s how the season after Pentecost to the Sunday of Christ, the King is called in the Liturgical Year. In the secular world, much of this period is vacation time, a season to get away from day-to-day chores and to devote time specifically to relaxation. This can involve travel or a stay-at-home vacation, nowadays called a staycation. Whatever you do, please also feel free to include a refueling of your soul by visiting the Confidentia Shrine during its jubilee year.

In numerous stories and poems of her new publication Kate Otto’s Legacy – Daily Life for a Schoenstatt Mother, the author gives witness to the transformative power of the Confidentia Shrine in her life. The booklet is available in our gift shop.

We are happy to host camps for young women, high school students, and younger girls during June and are grateful to the moms who accompany their daughters and volunteer as chaperones. Please pray for the success of these vacation days in the shadow of the shrine.

It’s also high time to share with you more details about the celebration planned for the 60th anniversary of the Confidentia Shrine on Saturday, October 19, 2019. We will begin around 11 am and close with a Holy Mass of Thanksgiving at 4 pm officiated by Bishop Mulvey of Corpus Christi. Please save the date and invite your family and friends to this Shrine Festival which includes a BBQ lunch, games, talks, info booths as well as the possibility to visit our MTA in the shrine and thank her for the past 60 years of blessings.

Wishing you a happy and rejuvenating vacation,

Schoenstatt Sisters of Mary

Click here for Other Confidentia Ancedotes and Blurbs


  • The Shrine is open from 8:00 am to 6:00 pm
  • Restrooms are open

Our store is open during the following hours

  • Tuesday through Sunday
  • 10:30 am – 12:00 noon
  • 1:00 pm – 3:00 pm
  • 4:00 pm- 5:00 pm
  • On Mondays the store is closed!

For more information for the use of the house, please contact the new administrator of our retreat center:

  • Sr. M. Jacinta Brunner by email: houseschoenstattlamar@gmail.com or by cell phone: 361-695-0677.
  • Store number: 361-729-7638
  • Please note:
  • the number 361-729-1868 is not yet a functioning number for our house,    but unfortunately it still appears on most caller id’s. If you want to reach us by land phone, it is necessary to use the number 361-729-2019.

 

“Thanks, a thousand thanks to you, to God shall be now and for all eternity.”

Fr. Kentenich