Lentini's Congregation of Our Lady of Dolours

in

Italy and the World

 

 

   

 

Communication from Don Mario Riccio

 

 

Conference about Lentini's Spirituality

at Lauria, Italy. 14-15-16 October 1994

 

 

 

 

 

Don Mario Riccio

 

 

 

The Congregations of spirit

AND VEN. LENTINI'S

SODALITY OF

OUR LADY OF DOLOURS

 

 

historical growth to date

 

 

 

A study presented as a Communication

at the Conference about

The Spirituality of Dominic Lentini,

(held at Lauria, Italy 14 -16 October 1994)

and completed in some parts and appendices

 

 

 

 

 

To my Bishop

Mons. Rocco Talucci

 

 

 

Italian Edition: For private circulation only

Publisher: Grafica Pollino - Castrovillari

Italy ( 0981/28354

Published: November 1994

 

English Edition: [Available from translator - see page 36]

Publisher: R P M Manufacturing Services Ltd,

5b Newtown Industrial Estate,

Dublin 17, Ireland. ( (01)867 0143

Published: 25 February 1995

 

 

 

 

 

The Congregations of spirit

 

AND A TYPE OF SODALITY

TO CONSOLE OUR LADY OF SORROWS

historical growth to date

 

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>font size=3> It was during the Lent of 1984. I was going to the Nuns to say Mass and I met Don Gaetano Giordano who contrary to his usual habit was going about the parish on foot. He approached and asked me for a Lentini triduum for the Jubilee Year of Redemption. I don't know why but I said yes to him and so I commenced to read the 1927 Positio about his Heroic Virtues. Amongst the things that I was more or less acquainted with about Lentini I found out two new ones: The Congregations of spirit and The Sodality of Our Lady of Dolours.

A) CONGREGATIONS OF SPIRIT

Were they secret assemblies or common gatherings? Lentini's ones were certainly not secret like the ones that Ven.Maria Januarius Sarnelli and St.Alphonsus Liguori intended with their so-called 'Evening Chapels", but the spirit of these secret confraternities was pursued by Lentini. Although not quantifiable in depth it appears that both Sarnelli and St.Alphonsus were read at Policastro from the research of Don Giuseppe Cataldo into the bibliographical inventory around about Lentini's time at the Seminary there. But if their writings were present then the pastoral initiatives of these Neapolitan Apostles must also have been known, above all in that epoch to stem its illuministic ideas and revolutionary movements which Lentini recognised as the "strong spirits". It is probable likewise that Lentini would have specifically read St.Alphonsus' "The Glories of Mary" published in 1750 and that saint's advice would have remained impressed on him: "It would be a great advantage too if the secret Congregation of the most fervent brethren were introduced in honour of the same divine Mother" (1). To obtain a model of these eighteenth century secret Congregations one is advised to read Giuseppe Orlandi's study of the confrontation between St.Alphonsus Liguori and the Congregation of Our Lady of Dolours at Procida (2).

These secret confraternities used unfold in the evening and provided for a period of noviciate and rigid respect of regulations not recorded in those of Lentini, which instead were simple common meetings which were utilised nonetheless to pursue the same religious and formative aims. The priest Don Antonio Lagrotta makes this emerge rather well in the Positio when he speaks about them twice and I consider sufficiently for understanding what they were and to whom they were directed.

 

In the first instance: "I personally know the Servant of God. Well I remember when he was preaching in this parish church and in the Chapel of the Assunta where the Congregation of spirit used be held" [- it says: "used be held" and not "he was holding" as if to make us understand like is said afterwards, that they were on the Assunta's programme] (3).

In the second instance he defines whom it was for and its aims: "...to assist children and youth in the congregations of spirit and direct them on the path of perfection" (4).

If Lentini didn't know about them at Policastro he would have encountered them by experience at Lagonegro. But perhaps they were already in existence in Lauria itself because - as will be seen for the people of Lagonegro - they were none other than formation reunions, which were held by Priests and promoted by themselves or bound to their annual chapel activities. If they were taking place at the Assunta it is probable that they were tied to the programmes of that chapel like it was for St.Anne in Lagonegro a place that Lentini reached often on account of his preaching there. This is the way in fact that Mons.Raele refers to the spirit Congregations in Lagonegro's St.Anne's: "In the chapel of St. Anne the Congregation of spirit has been established for the children who every Thursday at ...a.m. receive catechism lessons and moral instruction from the priest and the bigger ones recite the Office of the Blessed Virgin ... The Congregation - continues Raele - is more than a century old. In one document of the clergy of 1831 it speaks about nova congregatione erecta in Ecclesia S.Annae ad iuventutis educationem - and about spiritual exercises - quae in ea assignatis diebus fiunt4a (5). And the above-mentioned is exactly the introduction that Lagrotta makes about the Congregations of spirit which Lentini used hold at the Assunta: they were meetings directed at children and youth. They had the scope of forming them in a maturity of faith and spirit. It was a question of periodic reunions connected to the statutes of the Assunta or willed to be there by Lentini - always however in association with the collegiality of St.Nicola which jointly and by rotation used to assign pastoral or administrative duties. And among the chapels which were administered by the clergy of St.Nicola - as Don Carmine De Franco (6) has published - there were three: 1st The Assunta 2nd St. Veneranda and 3rd St.Vito. In particular for the Assunta these congregations of spirit were identified with the "spiritual exercises" which were held there in the course of the year under the direction of its Rector or Procurator.

From parochial and diocesan archives I have not been able to ascertain Lentini's possible nomination as Rector or Procurator of the Assunta but it is to be supposed that he may have been so at sometime as mentioned for other Priests in the archives of Policastro. But the question is a relative one whereas the model and complete ecclesiality of the spirit congregations held by Lentini does appear relevant and special and Lagrotta brings this out when he says: "...and to start them on the path of the spirit". It was not namely purely catechesis but catechesis in the spirit. It is not an exaggeration to see here a 'church movement' towards the laity which combines: Catechism, Catholic Action and Renewal in the Spirit. And that one of the Assunta was certainly such on account of the charismatic presence of Don Dominic. Rey-Mermet also maintains this point for the secret congregations of spirit of Sarnelli and St.Alphonsus in which he sees anticipated "our prayer groups, our charismatic fraternities and the basic communities" (7) with the difference however that they were not set apart or in contrast with the parish but - like De Spirito says - they were "longa manus"4b (8).

One catches a glimpse consequently in these spirit congregations at Lauria and Lagonegro of the vitality of the Noce Valley and their relative glance at the Neapolitan ambience of St.Alphonsus and Sarnelli. As for the latter I cannot but recall that he attended the same Chinese College where another native of Lauria was formed, namely Emiliano Palladini the Procurator of Propaganda Fidei at Macao, about whom there was a Study Conference a year ago in this same Hotel, with the participation of Francesco D'Arelli the researcher and some eastern oriental teachers from Naples (9). I believe likewise that Lentini's zeal against blasphemy calls to mind even Sarnelli who was pioneer of the Anti-blasphemy Law so much so as to involve Bishops and Magistrates. However different Sarnelli and Lentini were as regards social extraction and fields of work they were alike. The latter of humble condition always in Lauria; the other of nobility and always in Naples. Sarnelli the first-born of the Ciorani barons, was born and died at Naples: 12/9/1702 -30/6/1744. He became a lawyer but later on he donned the clerical habit and attended the aforesaid Chinese College. He was ordained priest in 1732 and joined the Neapolitan Apostolic Missions but the following year 1733 he entered St.Alphonsus' Congregation at Scala (10). He lived almost always at Naples just like Lentini did at Lauria; he dedicated himself to the poor of the street, to the sick in hospitals and to the conversion of sinners exactly as Lentini would do in Lauria and its surroundings. Mons.Giuseppe De Rosa from 'Nocera dei Pagani' - who was Lentini's Bishop while he was a seminarist - must have known about these Neapolitan Apostolic Missions and even if they were not at Policastro he was the one to bring them in at least with his apostolic orientation by calling them most capable Priests, like Don Nicola Lentini the great preacher and teacher of the lesser known Don Dominic Lentini.

I was talking about the cultural and religious vitality of the Noce valley which has precise connections with Campania. On account of this, Lentini's Apostolate among youth and children, his performing parish duties as St.Alphonsus wanted from the secret congregations and his specific devotion to Our Lady of Sorrows which we will go on to treat - express clearly that Lentini the Apostle worked in a local secular clergy - both of the Noce region and diocesan - which were bound to the culture and experiences of the campanian7 milieu. And this is deduced indirectly even from the thick fringe of secular clergy who would be found in the various secret movements of our Southern Revival as I have noted in my other publication about Lentini (11). Naples is the city of culture and the novel to which the young and families look or go even from Lauria - from Emiliano Palladini's to that of the martyr Nicola Carlomagno - in order to live out the cultural and religious fermentations there, which one way or another cannot but make its atmosphere or ambience reach our own territory and the clergy itself. A new one of which nevertheless our Lentini does not entirely accept if it is not light and liberty of the Cross, as Gino Concetti wrote about Lentini in L'Osservatore Romano: "His behaviour was also consistent in confrontations with secret societies, historical movements and ideologies. From his sermons and other sources there appears one Lentini: - rigid in orthodoxy, hard against all that is outside the Church or against the Church but preoccupied above all to make understood that what is important for Christians is to be Saints, if only holy Christians" (12). But it was precisely these reservations of his which make him attentive to the times, culture and movements which come from Naples directly or indirectly and which he sifts and separates on account of their interference and for the sake of his Apostolate.

All the observations made so far lead to a conclusion different from that arrived at by others, namely that Lentini's spirituality is clearly detached from the Franciscan and this also on account of his profound devotion to Our Lady of Sorrows because the Franciscans remain anchored to the spirituality of the Crib and hence to Joy.

 

 

B:- THE SODALITY OF OUR LADY OF DOLOURS

 

In regard to the Sodality of Our Lady of Dolours unlike the Congregations of spirit I have found more witnesses and clarity. They call it a "kind of" confraternity hence somewhat of a group formed by 30 individuals with the pledge of going to pray once a month in turns before a picture of Our Lady of Dolours which had been placed by Lentini in St.Nicola.

The witness Nicola Di Deco speaks about it in particular: "... He had established a sort of sodality formed by 30 people each of whom on one definite day of the month was obliged to meditate on the sorrows of the Virgin" (13). This sodality is mentioned too in the classical biographies of Pisani and Sica which differ only about the altar on which the picture of Our Lady of Dolours would have been placed (14).

It is called "a kind of sodality" meaning that it was seen as a group and this explains likewise why that graceful movement - which appears the only attempt at a definite work by Lentini - was lost along the way with the disappearance of its 30 members.

How much they used pray and what prayers they said is not mentioned. I think that each one prayed as they were able; also because not everyone at that time was in a position to read. It is considered that in 1871 88% were still illiterate in Basilicata7. But any specific prayer to Our Lady of Dolours was taught orally by Lentini, as Maria Antonia Fittipaldi makes us understand: "He used to instill in me each time devotion to Our Lady of Sorrows and more times he made me practise it" (15). This "instilling in me" and "making me practise it" are lovely expressions. I see it as the 'education of Lentini the teacher' and in general as his communicative simplicity comprising patience, constancy and love: "each time" Fittipaldi says - however she doesn't add if she was also from the sodality's group.

But apart from the structure of this "sort of sodality" the novelty - that characterises it from the devotions and congregations already present in the territory or district - is to be put into prominence on the plain of Lentini's whole spirituality. That is to say that the consolation which Lentini wants for Our Lady of Sorrows through these 30 individuals ought to be daily and constant. He - the daily consoler of the Crucified, in contemplation of whom and prayer of reparation - he involves his young people at least every Friday. He feels and wants some of his beloved people to always stay close by - contemplating, consoling and making reparation for Mary's Sorrows. "Into her intercession as Sorrowful Mother" Raffaele Lentini says (16) he himself used place - after God - all his hope. He - who "cries out" against the monster of sin which recrucifies Jesus - knows also and feels that the mystical actuality of the Man-God's Sorrow reverberates wholly in the Mother of Sorrows. And so here he is beside Mary to console her and there he involves his little group with zeal. But if he instills this love for Our Lady of Sorrows with intensity into the favourite group of 30 he doesn't neglect the others.

On the contrary he firstly becomes enamoured himself by putting devotion to Our Lady of Sorrows among the pillars of his spiritual journey as the Priest Don Giuseppe Maria Paldi testifies: The means by which Lentini helped himself "to obtain eternal life were penances, detachment from earthly goods and worldly honours and in particular fervent devotion to Our Lady of Sorrows" (17). He infuses it into his penitents with love as Fittipaldi has pointed out. He indicates it to the sick and relatives so that in their contemplation of Mary's Sorrows they might find relief, strength and sweetness as emerges from the lovely testimony of 'Donna' Maria Battista Morella (Mosella I think): "He was devoted specially to Our Lady of Dolours and I remember that when he went to visit someone sick he brought along an image of Our Lady of Sorrows around which were the instruments of the Passion and he used make those present contemplate it" (18). Even his little room speaks by itself of this living teaching of the Cross. There was a Crucifix, Our Lady of Dolours, St.Francis of Paola and few books precisely because for him the living and speaking book came immediately from the Sorrowful Hearts of Jesus and Mary: - Two Hearts that have suffered and suffer for love until the completion of all that - in the Father's Mystery - is lacking in the Passion of Christ for the Coming of the Kingdom of Love. And so as true Son of the Cross Lentini is bound - and he binds others - to these Two Immaculate and Sorrowful Hearts. This is Lentini's substantial message and he teaches this to his spiritual children to whom he leaves in seed and silence this kind of sodality of his.

Some influence would have him going to preach in nearby Mercurion a place near the icon of the Mother of God with Child which is found everywhere - from the Middle Ages onwards - where there was some church or chapel dedicated to Our Lady of Dolours. The Cassano diocese distinguishes itself where rites, novenas and confraternities to Our Lady of Dolours are found both in its Cathedral as in other places like 'Laino Borgo' and 'Castelluccio Inferiore' (- the latter is now part of our diocese of Tursi). These last two - being places that Lentini has illuminated with his preaching and would have brought back edification and desire to do something more for Our Lady of Sorrows.

But what was able to push Lentini most to organise prayer to Our Lady of Sorrows I think may have been the revolutionary epoch and misadventures of Pius VII - that Pope who suffered so much and for whose sake Lentini suffered and prayed a great deal. Well then Pius VII himself who was the Pope of the Church's Sorrow instituted the feastday of Our Lady of Dolours in 1814. On account of this the devotion to Our Lady of Sorrows - which until then was of a popular and devotional character - entered the Church's liturgy after 1814. It is known how Lentini welcomed the Bishop's and the Pope's directives. By reading his sermon for 1824 the Holy Year one feels with what zeal he wanted to live that year of grace. Therefore the institution of the liturgical feastday of Our Lady of Sorrows was certainly welcomed with particular enthusiasm by Lentini. And I think that his idea - or else the greater development of his little movement of the heart and of participation in Mary's Sorrows - may well be connected to that date .

The fact later on that he chose St. Nicola - and not the nearby chapel of St. Vincenzo for the prayers - clinches the sense of church that accompanies every form of Lentini's apostolate. He does not go off to preach in Lent if he is not called and sent by the Bishop. He does not hold the Congregations of spirit at the Assunta if it is not within the bounds of the parish's pastoral-care. He is unable to act otherwise with the prayer group of thirty. And this is confirmed also by witnesses. It is sufficient to hear Raffaele Lentini's phrase again: ".......... promoting the devotion in the Church" (cf. no. 16). Then Fittipaldi makes us understand the assistance that he used give the group when she says: "He used instill in me everytime devotion to Our Lady of Sorrows" (cf. no. 15). Fittipaldi says this for herself but she testifies it for everyone - faithful, penitents and the group of 30. And this involvement of his with others personally and repeatedly is marvellous even making them assimilate his own spirit. Behold the true educator and master of the spirit: he not only teaches but he communicates with passion and love his thought and his living of Christ and Mary.

 

 

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I think about "holiness" as the poetry of faith and life for which I consider this group of thirty the most sublime lyric of Lentini-poetry. The poet is heart and the Saint is purity, sublimity and dedication of heart both to God and brethren. From Lentini's heart 'charity' towards the poor rises up. From Lentini's heart the 'voice' of command explodes: gather and feed my sheep; and he does it in the confessional, in preaching and in his daily and occasional encounters. But from Lentini's heart ardent love of God, of Christ and the Blessed Virgin are particularly raised up. A heart is great when it assimilates and makes its own the heart-beats of the one it loves. God suffers in Christ and in Our Lady of Sorrows and so Lentini's heart is there at the foot of the Cross where he arrives with his reparatory penance, his immolation and in particular with his prayer of the heart.

Prayer at the Cross is lived by Lentini together with Mary in a constant manner and above all in the Eucharistic mystery. Here he is in ecstasy of love and sorrow as if he were "living and present" at the mystery of Golgotha 2000 years ago. The heart has no time. Therefore Lentini's heart is living and agonising the Sorrow of Jesus and Mary at the foot of the Cross. This living presence - for Lentini - is in the Mass and in the Tabernacle. And here and now in St.Nicola - where the Sorrow of the Cross is always present - Lentini wants to establish a constant adoration - and from the heart - to the Sorrows of Jesus and Mary.

Truly high and original was this little community of thirty! I have already said that I have found nothing similar in so many good initiatives, prayers and traditions to Our Lady of Dolours. Don Giorgi Rossi at the October '94 Conference in Lauria - where he read this study in part - invited me to verify if there were similar experiences in the surrounding areas. I had already done so for some places. Everywhere there are so many Mothers of Sorrow. She is felt in the whole people of the poor South who see their pain reflected and alive in that of Our Lady of Sorrows. And the poor woman who has lost her son or husband wears it in colour - just like 'la Longa' in Verga's novel: "I Malavoglia" - who at the news of her poor son killed in the battle of Lissa - slipped to the ground half-dead.... They brought her home on a cart and she was sick for some days. From then on she was caught up in a great devotion to Our Lady of Sorrows who was on the altar of their little church. And it seemed to her that that long body - stretched out on its mother's knees with its blackened ribs and knees red with blood - was the picture of her Luke. And she felt those silver swords - that the Madonna had - fixed in her own heart. Every evening the simple women - when they went to have Benediction and Cirino comes out shaking the keys before closing up - used see her always there at that place - dejected on her knees and they even called her the sorrowful mother".

The quotation - (Verga "I Malavoglia" page 137 of the 1953 Mondadori edition) - is reported by Don Giuseppe De Luca in the "Mater Dei" Bulletin in a brief column under the title: "Giovanni Verga and Our Lady of Dolours". He comments: "Moreover the one who would be able to say how much the Italian people have loved the Crucified One and Our Lady of Sorrows would tell the best part of their religious history - they have been (and alas are no more) their greatest devotions" (19). It is therefore the prayer of the whole Italian nation. But this prayer in turns for the entire month to Our Lady of Sorrows I don't think is found either in the South or in other parts of Italy and the world. One can certainly find Perpetual Eucharistic Devotion but not Adoration of Perpetual Cross. And even that is novel: true Eucharistic Devotion is ascending and entering the Sorrow of the Cross. And Lentini amongst other motives wants the group in St.Nicola, because there in the Tabernacle is the Living Mystery of the Cross.

 

REVIVAL OF THE CONGREGATION OF OUR LADY OF DOLOURS

 

Meanwhile as I myself went on reading about Lentini's Heroic Virtues - this Sodality of Our Lady of Dolours pleased me notwithstanding the term used. I spoke about it to the group - who for months were doing an experience of prayer along with me - and I launched the idea of continuing those prayers by linking it to the revival of Lentini's Sodality of Our Lady of Dolours. There were about 100 and they accepted the initiative with enthusiasm. A lively thanks goes to that group that was near me. It pledged itself and signed the Refoundation Parchment. A particular thanks goes next to Mons.Rocco Talucci who was willing to bless this journey of prayer thus:

IN BLESSING "THE CONGREGATION OF OUR LADY OF DOLOURS" WILLED BY THE SERVANT OF GOD "VEN. LENTINI" I ADDRESS MY PATERNAL INVITATION TO ITS ASSOCIATES TO BE WILLING TO IMITATE THE BLESSED VIRGIN WHO AT THE FOOT OF THE CROSS CONSECRATED HER LOVE AND FIDELITY TO GOD. OUR OWN VENERABLE WAS ABLE TO SUFFER FOR LOVE: YOU TOO MUST LEARN HOW TO LOVE GOD AND HOLY MOTHER CHURCH EVEN UNTO SACRIFICE. I BLESS YOU.

LAURIA 19/4/1989 V ROCCO TALUCCI BISHOP OF TURSI-LAGONEGRO

Lentini had caused it to come forth or originate in the parish and it was right that it would rise again with the approval of its parish priest. And so don Carmine de Franco - together with the vice-parish priest don Francesco Sirufo - who today is his successor as Parochial Administrator - presided on 21/4/89 at the FIRST BLESSING AND CONFERRING OF THE LENTINI-CRUCIFIX - which is now only given to those enrolled members who pass through the Little House which is our meeting place. Regarding others see appendix 7.

 

 

STRUCTURE AND AIMS

 

The structure retraces the one of the 30. Each one promises once a month to meditate on and make reparation to Mary's Sorrows with the recitation of: 1) Via Crucis 2) Sorrowful Mysteries of the Rosary and 3) Chaplet of the Seven Dolours. Nobody is obliged to feel himself pledged morally but let it be done for love alone and freely - on one's own or in a group and at any hour of the day. The enrolment is for life. The only badge is the little black crucifix (4 cm) to have on during the prayers and other occasions at one's own discretion and it is conferred at the Little House along with the Consecration to the Cross. The purpose of the sodality is enclosed in this Act, which after all is the best part of Lentini in synthesis . Thus says the text:-

ETERNAL LOVE OF THE FATHER, SON AND HOLY SPIRIT, WE CONTEMPLATE IN THE PRIEST DOMINIC LENTINI THE MARVELS OF YOUR SANCTITY. WE THANK YOU FOR THIS GIFT MADE TO THE PEOPLE OF LAURIA AND THE WORLD AND WE PLEDGE OURSELVES LIKE HIM FOR THE CONVERSION OF SINNERS AND THE SANCTITY OF PRIESTS, SO THAT THE CHURCH MAY BE ENRICHED BY HIS MODEL OF LIFE AND MAY FOLLOW HIM IN HIS TOTAL PARTICIPATION AT THE MYSTERY OF THE CROSS. IN THE NAME OF HIS CRUCIFIX WE PRAY YOU TO GIVE US ALSO HIS SPIRIT OF LOVE AND REPARATION TO THE SORROWS OF JESUS AND OUR LADY OF DOLOURS. AND NOW THROUGH HIS INTERCESSION WE ASK YOU FOR EVERY BLESSING AND SPIRITUAL AND TEMPORAL GRACE.

 

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CIRCULATION

 

To date at 5/10/94 2,143 faithful have personally collected their Crucifix at Lentini's Little House, coming specially from the South of Italy but also from other regions and parts of Europe and the world. All those enrolled, including those who have sent in their enrolment from abroad, are about 2,500 of whom some 700 are from Lauria. The daily average of those praying is around 80 which is duplicated or triplicated on the following days: the 1st, 5th, 13th, 15th, 19th, 24th and 25th. Many pray in a group, in family or in church. I hear it said that some meet one another in turns in the home of one of the members to pray and it is nice to know that in this world of well-being there are some who receive visits to be together to pray. We from Lauria but also from places nearby - other than on our own individual day of prayer - meet together at the Little House at 4 p.m. every Thursday and each 24th of the month except - December 24th - for a vigil of 70/80 minutes. We make three vigils in particular: on February 2nd for the anniversary of the Refoundation and on 13th and 14th of September for the Exaltation of the Cross and the Feast of Our Lady of Dolours.

 

THE SPECIFIC ZONES OF CIRCULATION

 

The Congregation of Our Lady of Dolours in six years since its refoundation has spread to many dioceses which are grouped into zones in Italy whereas foreign countries are indicated in a general manner.

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1) THE LENTINIAN ZONE (namely that of Lentini's preaching and which corresponds to the two ex-dioceses of Policastro and Cassano): POLICASTRO (Lauria, Latronico, Nemoli, Lago Sirino, Rivello, Trecchina, Maratea Porto, Lagonegro, Sapri, Vibonati, Torraca, Casaletto Spartano and Fortino), CASSANO (Laino Borgo, Rotonda, Castelluccio Inferiore and Castelluccio Superiore, Mormanno, Morano, and Castrovillari), TURSI (Castelsaraceno) and the nearby dioceses of: TEGGIANO-POLICASTRO (Sala Consilina, Casalbuono, Montesano, Arenabianca), S.MARCO-SCALEA (Praia, Tortora Marina, Scalea, Cirella, Diamante) and the not-so-near dioceses of: POTENZA(PZ), MATERA, TRICARICO (Stigliano).

 

11) THE BIG AREAS OF THE THREE GULFS (Naples - Taranto - Squillace):

 

a) NAPLES (Napoli, Secondigliano, Melito, S.Giorgio, Casoria, Marano, Arzano, Portici Bella Vista, S.Giorgio a Cremano and consequently: AVERSA (S.Antimo, Giuliano), NOCERA (Nocera6 Inferiore and Superiore), SALERNO (Salerno, Battipaglia), AVELLINO (Frigento), CAIAZZO (Pratella), CASERTA (Caserta, Cervino), BENEVENTO;

 

b) TARANTO (Taranto, Talsano, Lama, Leporano, S.Giorgio, Statte, Grottaglie, Roccaforzata, Pulsano, Lizzano, Crispiano, Faggiano, Martina Franca, Monteparano, Carosino, S.Giorgio Jonico, Monteiasi), CASTELLANETA (Massa, Palagiano, Marina di Ginosa, Mottola, S.Basilio di Mottola) and consequently BRINDISI (Villa Castelli), ORIA (Avetrano), BARI-BITONTO (Bitonto, Bitetto, Acquaviva delle Fonti), CONVERSANO (Conversano, Laterza, Alberobello).

 

c) CATANZARO-SQUILLACE (Catanzaro, Cz-Lido, Squillace, Squillace-Marina, Soverato, Soverato-Laganosa, Soverato-Saponaro, Gasperina, Davoli, Davoli-Marina, S.Sostene, Olivadi, Satriano, Filogaso, Montauro, Serra S.Bruno, Girifalco, Taverna, Rocca Bernarda, Cardinale, Chiaravalle, Chiaravalle Centrale, Torre di Ruggiero, Sersale, Badalato, Fabrizia). Other Calabrian7 dioceses: ROSSANO (Rossano, Rossano Scalo, Cropalati, Corigliano, Cantinella, S.Apollinare, Thurio, Ministalla and Thurio's Timparelle), COSENZA (Cosenza, Rende, Torano Castello, Montalto Uffugo, Mendicino, Acri, Bisignano (ex-diocese), Rogliano Gravina, Donnici, Castrolibero), the Albanian diocese of LUNGRO (Lungro, Firmo, Acquaformosa, S.Demétrio Corone, Sofferetti, Vaccarizzo, Eianina, S.Sofia d'Epiro), CASSANO (already mentioned), REGGIO CALABRIA (Reggio C., S.Pietro di Carità, Archi), CROTONE (Petilia di Policastro, Cropani Marina), LOCRI (Siderno, Gioiosa Marina, Caulonia), OPPIDO MAMERTINA-PALMI (Palmi, Taurianova), LAMEZIA T. (Lamezia, Nicastro), S.MARCO ARGENTAMO-SCALEA (S.Marco A., Grisolia, Marina di Belvedere, the rest were already mentioned in the Lentini-zone).

 

111) SICILY (land of the LENTINI surname - Lentini is a little syracusian town- linked to Lauria in the 17th century (20): CATANIA (Catania, Gravina di CT, Mascalucia, Tremestrieri Etneo, Motta S.Anastasia, Camporotondo Etneo, Bronte), MESSINA, PALERMO (Palermo, Bagheria), RAGUSA (Vittoria), CALTANISETTA (Caltanisetta, Gela) and for SARDINIA (Cagliari).

 

1V) OTHER ITALIAN DIOCESES: MODENA (Montecorone), PESCARA, CREMONA (Cassano d'Adda), COMO, MILANO (Milano, Buscate, Lainate, Rosate, Bovisio Masciago, Rho, Legnano), VARESE (Varese, Busto Arsizio, Laveno Mombello, Verghera), BERGAMO, PAVIA (Robbio Lomellina), VICENZA (Arzignano), ALBENGA (Pietra Ligure, Feglino), ASTI (Vesime, Bubbio), MONTEPULCIANO, GROSSETO, ROMA (Roma, Anguillara Sabazia).

 

V) FOREIGN COUNTRIES:

a) Europe: PARIS (France), DUBLIN (Ireland), GENEVA (Switzerland);

b) Americas: CARACAS (Venezuela), present in CALIFORNIA and in MEDFIELD, MA (USA), SAO PAOLO and RECIFE (Brazil);

c) Africa: ZAIRE (with Fr.Giuseppe Caso who has built even a church dedicated to Lentini) and BENIN (with Fr. Vincenzo Di Blasi a Camillian missionary from Paola CS Italy)

 

¯ ¯ ¯

 

ACTUALITY AND REALITY OF "CONSOLATIO MARIAE"

 

The reason for Mary's Sorrow is in the Mystery of the Cross: Our Lady of Sorrows was necessary beside the Crucified One. And more than beside Him it needs to be said: together with the Crucified One because in the tragedy of Golgotha Mary has not played a secondary role. Mary is at the foot of the Cross to suffer with her Son and to offer the Son to the Father in view of her spiritual Maternity towards the whole of humanity: "Woman behold thy son". And therefore John - to whom Jesus entrusted the spiritual road of his Immaculate Mother's Maternity in Sorrow - took her to himself and became the model of the devotee of Our Lady of Sorrows.

Lentini understood this. The group of 30 did this. This again we too look forward to doing with the revived Congregation of Our Lady of Dolours: - to be like John - to be like Lentini - to be living flowers to console the Sorrowful Virgin: - heart-flowers - love-flowers for the Mother's torn Heart. And this consolatio Mariae after the manner of 'John - Lentini' is above all most urgent today. I do not know if the many Madonnas that weep are real. But it would be the most normal thing to happen. Like at the foot of the Cross it is still the "No" to the Father's Law that tears the Mother's Heart apart. And today the Sorrowful Mother - beyond the signs - is present there where peace is broken and where babies suffer. She is there where the roads of Hell and perdition are travelled. The Mother of Sorrows brings us her Tears of love as a last gospel to convert us and as a great gift of the Father's Mercy.

In Mary's final salute at Fatima there is exactly the Holy Family as the very gift that she will bring to this lost humanity. But there is also the vision of Our Lady of Dolours and of Our Lady of Mount Carmel to tell us that the White Cloud of Carmel crosses the skies - even the skies of this sick history - nay she furrows and signs them with her sweet tears as Mother of Sorrows. So that they may not be lost tears Lentini's Congregation of Our Lady of Dolours is unfolding and spreading its own little part. And this is not only a wish. If we work in silence then in silence we gather the great blessing that accompanies whoever places themselves in our little praying group. I hear about families who are reunited, sick who are healed and evil spirits who leave off troubling the children of God.

The power of the Cross certainly accompanies us, but in the Cross there is - what was for Lentini - the great intercession of Our Lady of Sorrows. But I believe that to such Mediation of Mary Lentini's intercession is added also. And he as Servant of the Cross, is gathering on the roads of the world simple adorers of the Cross in order to lead them like the angel of Bethlehem to the little Caffari-laneways in Lauria and educate them in the poverty of his Little House, as the only way to make forgiveness, love and acceptance, triumph. And also as the Rock on which to build and prepare the joyful event of men, families and peoples of peace: "PEACE THEREFORE MY CHRISTIANS, PEACE WITH GOD, PEACE WITH YOUR NEIGHBOUR, PEACE PEACE PEACE WITH EVERYONE AND MAY THE GOD OF PEACE BE ALWAYS WITH YOU" (21).

Peace is the great bread of the Lentinian Apostolate: let it also be our daily bread because peace is possible if one is convinced and a follower of the utopia of the Cross. If it were not so we will have to repeat with St.Paul that our faith is in vain. We know instead that the utopia of peace is the Great eschatological Promise of the Cross. But the Cross is also the Great Gift that comes from the Heart of the Mother of Sorrows. If we wish to resolve the many problems of today we must reduce words and gather ourselves in our silence in order to make a place for Mary's Sorrow. In Her Heart are all our wounds but also the Heart of one Merciful Son who carries in Himself the Fullness of an Easter-in-the-coming for the whole of humanity. Today the world has lost Silence and sows useless words. God on the contrary comes and is alone in the Silence of the Cross because there is where his Rock of Love, Forgiveness and Mercy - his Shalom - is. But this precious silence is heard fully only in the heartbeats and spasms of Mary's Sorrowful Heart - on account of which - to put oneself lovingly near her Motherly Sorrow is to find and taste the Silence of God's Peace.

 

SOURCES

(for the sake of an overall picture the entire texts of the Positio24 are reported)

 

A) The Congregations of spirit:

 

1) Giuseppe Orlandi: St.Alphonsus Maria dei Liguori, the laity and foundation of the congregation of Our Lady of Dolours (or of the "Reds") of Procida - extracted from Lateranun N.M. Year LV, 1989 No.1. If it was published one is advised to read the study of A. De Spirito's - Morphology and significance of Southern Italy's eighteenth century confraternities: its Common and Secret ones and St. Alphonsus' thinking - a report held in 1981 at the Degree Conference : "Confraternities in Italy in modern and contemporary times - XV - XX centuries (cf. Orlandi's quoted work page 10) - ; cf. also R.Rouquette Congregations secrètes in Dictionaire de spiritualité Paris 1953.

2) St.Alphonsus Maria dei Liguori "The Glories of Mary" at page 11 of Giuseppe Orlandi's work quoted.

3) Don Antonio Lagrotta: "I personally know the Servant of God; well I remember when he used preach in this parochial Church and in the Chapel of the Assunta where the Congregation of spirit used be held (Positio page 60 par.146).

4) It is always don Antonio Lagrotta who speaks about these Congregations of spirit directed at the youth: "Partly from my own knowledge and partly from the public voice or fame I can with all sureness declare that the Servant of God fulfilled the duties of the Priestly ministry in an extraordinary way . And in a special way then was he diligent in listening to the divine word, in assisting children and youth in the spirit congregations and in starting them on the path of perfection (the same: page 105 par.71)

5) Mons. Raffaele Raele in a posthumous work: "The City of Lagonegro in its religious life"- Buenos Aires 1944 page 250/251.

6) Cf. Carmine De Franco's The Church of St.Nicola of Bari in Lauria and its Territory - Osanna Venosa editions 1990 - which on page 39 at the term: Administered Chapels one reads: "The Clergy owns firstly the chapel of the Assunta with the help of a Rector or Special procurator... "... and his obligations are indicated: "Besides the Novena and festivity of the Assunta on August 15th other novenas and spiritual exercises are performed in the course of the year".

7) Rey-Mermet The Saint page 229: cf. G. Orlandi's work quoted page 21.

8) A. De Spirito The Parish page 95; cf. page 21 of Orlandi's work quoted.

9) Francesco D'Arelli, an unpublished report at the Conference held at Lauria on Emiliano Palladini (1733 - 1793). "The One Sent by the sacred family of Jesus Christ - Procurator of the Sacred Congregation of Propaganda Fidei at Macao"17a

10) Enc. Cattolica vol.X col.1927

11) Don Mario Riccio DOMINIC LENTINI HIS TIME HIS LAURIA. Cosenza 1985, pages 14ff (out of print).

12) Gino Concetti Dominic Lentini witness of the Cross in L'Osservatore Romano, 3/8/85.

 

 

B) The Sodality of our Lady of Sorrows

 

13) Texts that speak about the Sodality

? Nicola Di Deco "Moreover this same most lively faith was manifested in the highest devotion that he had to the Mother of God more precisely to Our Lady of Sorrows. About this I can be sure that he had established a kind of sodality formed by thirty individuals each one of whom on one fixed day of the month had to meditate on the Virgin's sorrows" (Positio on his heroic virtues of 24/9/1927 page 144 par.75); a quote partly repeated on page 18 par.31 It is probable that the self-same witness made the frame of Our Lady of Dolours' picture. As a matter of fact don Matthias Forestieri says: " Once he had a simple wooden frame constructed by an artisan since deceased called Nicola Di Deco for his picture of Our Lady of Dolours" (Positio page 260 par.31). It could perhaps be the Our Lady of Sorrows that he had in his bedroom and not the one placed in the church.

? The Priest quoted Don Matthias Forestieri knew himself about the sodality: "On Good Friday he didn't go out of the Church at all while meditating on the august mysteries of the Redeemer's passion and death. In a similar way I was told that he nourished devotion to the Mother of God and to St.Peter of Alcántara very specially. Next he was very devoted to the Sorrowful Virgin and still in our church there is a picture of the self-same on St.Elizabeth's altar a picture left there by him (who?) and placed by he himself (who?) on St.Alphonsus' altar" (Positio page 147 par.86/87; a quotation partly anticipated on page 18 par.31). It is to be noted that Don Mattia Forestieri as mentioned on page 146 had got the news from his grandmother Mattia Sarubbi who was related to don Venanzio Sarubbi to whom "... left by him and placed by him on St. Alphonsus' altar"- could refer. Don Venanzio Sarubbi - son of Francesco Maria Sarubbi and of Domenica Lentini, born on 20/3/1789 and ordained priest on 24/12/1816 - was the Venerable's nephew. Another Priest related by marriage was Don Nicola Carlucci, son of Domenico and Francesca Dodero born on 6/5/1811, ordained on 17/5/1835 and parish priest of St.Nicola from 1854 till 1887, who was preceded as Vicar precisely by Don Venanzio Sarubbi who on the track of his "saintly" uncle didn't want to accept the parish.

? Don Domenico Carlucci (nephew of Don Venanzio Sarubbi and perhaps brother of Don Nicola Carlucci): "Moreover he nurtured very special devotion to the Blessed Virgin and more precisely to Our Lady of Sorrows whose image he exposed in this church of ours, a picture that still is kept in the church mentioned. This he used point out also in his sermons and my priest-uncle Don Venanzio Sarubbi told me about it once" (Positio page 145 par.80).

14) Mons.Carlo Sica says: "He exhibited a large picture of Our Lady of Dolours to public veneration on St.Elizabeth's altar in his parochial church and he instituted an association of thirty devout people who in turns on one day each month would come to honour her with definite exercises of piety" (page 8 of his book: "Venerable DOMINIC LENTINI secular Priest of Lauria" published by Grottaferrata 1931"). Pisani on the other hand reports what the lawyer R. Lentini says by correcting only the location - namely that in his time at the end of the century - it was found on St.Elizabeth's altar: "Those swords ...used pierce his heart to the very quick: - He therefore - (begins the quotation of lawyer Lentini) - for the faithful's veneration placed in the bigger church a holy image of Mary the Mother of Sorrows - inspiring all tenderness (now the said picture is found on St.Elizabeth's altar). He (the self-same Servant of God) established a sacred devout Sodality dedicated every day to honouring, contemplating and venerating Mary's bitter sorrows. There were thirty sodalists who by rotation one day every month used consecrate everything in exercises of piety... - ( ... a biographical note of the Servant of God by solicitor Lentini page 8)." (Pisani His Sermons Rome 1894 page 94).

Pisani's parenthetic clause - Now it is found on St.Elizabeth's altar - refers to Don Domenico Carlucci's testimony but it does not say who put the picture on St.Alphonsus' altar. I do not believe that there was an altar of St.Alphonsus in the Venerable's era because he was canonised in 1839. It would probably have been his nephew Don Venanzio - and if he did - he would have done so either because it would be more visible to one going quickly into the church through "St.Anne's door" (which is now closed off and can be found where the confessional now is near St.Nicola), or even to bring his holy uncle closer to St.Alphonsus.

15) Maria Antonia Fittipaldi: "He used instill in me time and again devotion to Our Lady Mother of Sorrows and many times he used make me practise it - then he wanted above all that I be enamoured with Jesus in the Blessed Sacrament and a devotee too of St.Francis of Paola" (Positio pages 137/138 par.52).

16) Raffaele Lentini: "He had put all hope in God and after God in the intercession of Mary Most Holy Our Lady of Sorrows to whom he was most devoted by promoting her devotion in church and making the picture expressing her sorrows be placed there" (Positio page 161 par.7).

17) Don Giuseppe Maria Paldi: "....the means with which the Servant of God availed himself to obtain eternal life were penances, detachment from earthly goods & worldly honours, the practice of all the virtues, the protection of the Saints and in particular fervent devotion to the Virgin of Sorrows" (Positio pages 250/251 par.23/23).

18) 'Donna' Maria Battista Morella (or Mosella): "He was a devotee specially of Our Lady of Sorrows and I remember that when he went to visit someone sick he brought along an Image of Our Lady of Dolours around which were the instruments of the Passion and he used make those present contemplate it" (Positio page 150 par.98; partly quoted earlier on page 18 par.31).

19) De Luca don Giuseppe; Giovanni Verga and Our Lady of Dolours in MATER DEI Bulletin of the "Mater Dei" Institute directed by don Giuseppe De Luca - Historical and Literary edition, Rome 1972 page 113.

20) In the contracts of 1583-1600s at the Solicitors Serubbo and above all D'Oringa (vol. 67-70 State Archives of Potenza), the contracting parties not from Lauria are indicated by their place of origin: Rossella from Laino, from Rivello etc.. and it would have so happened for the Lentinos/Lentinis: Bruna from Lentino, Prudentia from Lentino, Antonia from Lentini etc. The wording was different to indicate the natives from Lauria: surname, name and possible addition of paternity.

21) Antonio Cantisani "Go ... and cry out, THE SERMONS OF VEN. DOMINIC LENTINI" Vivarium edition Catanzaro 1992 page 217: cf. Pisani His Sermons page 242.

 

 

 

 

 

 

APPENDICES

 

 

 

.

 

 

.

Jesus is living and real among us,

love him and cry out his love to the world!

 

 

 

 

 

Appendix 1 PARCHMENT OF THE REFOUNDATION

WITH LENTINI AT THE CROSS

WITH THE PLEDGE TO PRAY ONE DAY EVERY MONTH

(or beforehand if 29th,30th or 31st are missing)

 

ON 2/2/1989 FEAST OF THE PRESENTATION

AT THE END OF 13 WEEKS OF PRAYER

VENERABLE DOMINIC LENTINI'S

CONGREGATION OF OUR LADY OF DOLOURS IS REVIVED.

 

PRAYERS: (viz.) THOSE OF THE 13 WEEKS

1: VIA CRUCIS: with 1 Pater at every station

2: THE FIVE SORROWFUL MYSTERIES

3: CHAPLET OF THE SEVEN DOLOURS: with 1 Pater 3 Ave per Dolour.

 

Names:

1) Don Mario Riccio 18) Maria Di Lascio 19) Antonetta Filardi 20) Maria Sarubbi 21) Vito Fiore 24) Filomena Cantisani 25) Domenica Carlomagno 32) Antonio Albanese 33) Pietro Cianci 35) Anna Rosa Rizzo 37) Teresa Riccio 38) Teresa La Blanca 39) Felicetta Riccio 41) Anna Riccio 47) Maria Telpo 48) Giuseppina Spagnolo 49) Angelo Fortino 50) Maria Lucia Fittipaldi 58) Giacinta Zaccara 59) Vincenzo Zaccara 66) Antonetta Riccio 68) Giacomina Zaccara 72) Antonetta Fittipaldi 74) Maria Riccio 75) Teresa Cartolano 76) Antonella Cartolano 77) Nicola Riccio (viz. Extract)

 

 

 

 

Appendix 2 THE OFFICIAL ECCLESIASTICAL CHARACTER

NOTES

 

In blessing"The Congregation of Our Lady of Dolours" willed by the Servant of God "Ven.Lentini" I address my paternal invitation to its associates to be willing to imitate the Blessed Virgin who consecrated her Love and Fidelity to God at the foot of the Cross. Our own Venerable was able to suffer for love: you too must learn how to love God and Holy Mother Church even unto sacrifice. I bless you.

Lauria 19/4/1989 V Rocco Talucci Bishop of Tursi-Lagonegro

 

 

On 21 April 1989 in "Lentini's Little House" at 17.00 in a Concelebration presided over by the parish priest of St.Nicola of Bari in the person of Don Carmine De Franco and other priests Don Francesco Sirufo the vice parish priest and Don Mario Riccio its official status was given to Lentini's revived "Congregation of Our Lady of Dolours" along with the Blessing and Conferring of the Crucifix which was held immediately after the Consecration of the Bread and Wine in order to make the presence of the Risen Crucified One stand out all the more in the mystery of the Church. Lauria 21 April 1989

Don Mario Riccio

Don Francesco Sirufo

Don Carmine De Franco,

Parish priest of St.Nicola

 

 

Appendix 3 SOME PAGES OF THE MEMBERSHIP REGISTER PAGES OF THE REGISTER

 

 

The Registry Record

of the Conferring of the Crucifix of Lentini's Congregation of Our Lady of Dolours at the "Little House"

 

 

 

 

 

 

1st Blessing and Conferring

Friday of the 1V Sun. of Easter

(Jesus the Good Shepherd)

21 April 1989 ceremony beginning at 16.00

 

 

 

 

IST CEREMONY OF BLESSING AND CONFERRING 21APRIL 1989

{Extract}

 

No. Name and Surname Locality Diocese

1 Don Mario Riccio Lauria (lower) Tursi-Lagonegro

2 Don Francesco Sirufo Castelluccio Tursi-Lagonegro

3 Don Carmine De Franco, Lauria (Upper) Tursi-Lagonegro

Parish priest of St.Nicola of Bari

6 Giacomina Di Lascio Lauria Tursi-Lagonegro

11 Maria Sarubbi '' ''

13 Antonio Albanese '' ''

16 Pietro Cianci Lauria Tursi-Lagonegro

19 Pina Spagnolo '' ''

21 Domenica Cozzi '' ''

25 Maria Di Lascio '' ''

34 Felicetta Riccio '' ''

39 Maria Fittipaldi '' ''

40 Teresa Sarubbi '' ''

41 Mario Domenico Carlomagno'' ''

48 Teresa Chirico '' ''

52 Teresa Cartolano '' ''

53 Maria Riccio '' ''

54 Elisabetta Cardillo '' ''

57 Domenica Carlomagno '' ''

IST CEREMONY OF BLESSING AND CONFERRING 21APRIL 1989

 

No. Name and Surname Locality Diocese

58 Antonetta Carlomagno Lauria Tursi-Lagonegro

60 Antonia Cosentino '' ''

61 Domenico Claudio '' ''

62 Salvatore Chiacchio '' ''

70 Nicola Flore '' ''

71 Angela Ricciardi '' ''

72 Filomena Cozzi '' ''

75 Giuseppina Chiacchio '' ''

79 Domenica Ricciardi '' ''

81 Teresa Labanca '' ''

82 Gaetanina Alagia '' ''

86 Vittorio Fittipaldi '' ''

90 Vittorio Mazzelli '' ''

92 Maria Mazzelli '' ''

102 Antonella Cartolano '' ''

110 Assunta Labanca '' ''

112 Francesca Palladino '' ''

115 Rita Maria Cardillo '' ''

117 Maria Lucia Fittipaldi '' ''

Appendix 4 ONE OF THE PRAYER-DAYS .... my own one

{Extract}

 

19TH OF THE MONTH

 

Name Location

1 Don Mario Riccio, Lauria 2 Luigi Forte Nocera Inferiore

20 Angela Napoleone, Naples

32 Chiara Donadio, Naples

35 Edoardo Raspaolo, Naples

39 Anna Maria Voria Naples

45 Pina Orsi, Naples

46 Pina Ferrara, Naples

50 Dora Galano, Naples

58 Carmela Belotti, Naples

64,Luisa Giacobbe, Naples

65 Rosa De Marco Naples

69 Raffaele Di Lorenzo Salerno

70 Maddalena Torre Salerno

74 Salvatore Forte Nocera Inferiore

96 Angela Mappi Massafra

124 Antonio De Rosa Naples

160 Antonella Bello Taranto

167 Giovanna De Filippo Scalea

 

 

Appendix 5 A VIGIL WITH THE BISHOP

 

VIGIL OF LENTINI'S CONGREGATION OF OUR LADY OF DOLOURS

WITH HIS EXCELLENCY MON. ROCCO TALUCCI

AT ST.NICOLA OF BARI LAURIA ON 8TH JANUARY 1992

 

¯ ¯ ¯

 

Opening Hymn: LONG LIVE THE CROSS!

 

Via Crucis: Intention: For the Bishop and his pastoral visit to Lauria.

Introductory meditation. Via Crucis. Hymn: Immaculate Heart of Mary.

 

Sorrowful Mysteries of the Rosary:

 

1) JESUS' AGONY IN THE GARDEN OF OLIVES

Intention: for peace. Brief meditation. Recital of the Pater 10 Ave and Gloria.

Hymn: HOLY MARY OF THE WAY.

 

2) THE SCOURGING OF JESUS

Intention: to make reparation for the scourging that Jesus receives for today's innocents:

abortions victims of war crime and famine. Meditation. Decade prayers.

Hymn: THE FATIMA HYMN (The 13th of May).

 

3) THE CROWNING WITH THORNS

Intention: for Church Unity. Meditation. Decade.

Hymn: THE LOURDES HYMN (The Bells of the Angelus).

 

4) JESUS' JOURNEY TO CALVARY LADEN WITH THE CROSS

Intention: for the suffering (for their healing and because they go with their cross behind Jesus' Cross). Meditation. Decade.

Hymn: ONE DAY I'LL GO TO SEE HER..

 

5) CRUCIFIXION AND DEATH OF JESUS

Intention: for the conversion of all peoples and so that the whole of humanity may be

renewed by the Precious Blood of Jesus.

The Bishop's meditation. Decade.

Hymn: I SALUTE THEE O HOLY CROSS

 

 

CONSECRATION TO THE CROSS

 

The Bishop's blessing.

Final hymn: HYMN TO VEN. DOMINIC LENTINI

 

From Ven.D.Lentini: "Walk according to the will of the God Child".

Hymn: LONG LIVE THE CROSS! LONG LIVE LENTINI!

Appendix 5A Hymns at the Sodality's Vigil on 8 January 1992

 

1) Immaculate Heart of Mary

1st line Immaculate Heart of Mary,

2nd Immaculate Heart of Mary,

3rd Oh Light and Way Thou art!

4th Oh Light and Way Thou art!

5th Thou art Light and Way

for thy children below.

Melody (numbers = beats; viz.1=1 beat, 2=2 beats)

1st - 1doh, 2fah, 1fah, 2lah, 1soh, 2fah, 1fah

line. 2lah, 1soh, 2fah, 2fah

2nd - 1doh,2lah,1lah,2dohhigh,1tah,2lah,1lah

line. 2dohh, 1tah, 2lah, 2lah,

3rd - 2dohh, 2dohh, 2meeh 2rayh 1tah 2rayh

4th - 2tah,2tah, 2rayh, 2dohh, 1lah, 2dohh

5th - 1lah, 1lah, 1lah, dohh, 1lah,

h=high 1lah, 1lah, 2dohh, 2dohh, 2dohh, 2lah.

 

The Holy Father to Thee consecrated (x2),

Refrain Guard him with love,

Close to Thy Heart press him

Make him like Thy Son Jesus

Our own Bishop to Thee consecrated (x2),

Refrain Guard him with love, Close..etc

The Priests to Thee consecrated (x2),

Refrain Guard them with love,

Close to Thy Heart press them,

Make them like Thy Son Jesus

The Faithful to Thee consecrated (twice),

Refrain Guard them with love,Close etc

When our own final hour shall arrive (twice)

come! and do not tarry (twice)

come! don't tarry to bring us to heaven.

 

2) Holy Mary of the Way

While life goes on you are never alone,

Holy Mary of the Way, thou art ever with us

Refrain: Come, O Mother among us

Come, O Mary, here below.

We will walk together with thee to liberty.

When anyone tells you:

"Nothing will ever change"

Strive for a new world, strive for truth.

Refrain: Come, O Mother among us...

We will walk together with thee to liberty.

Along the street "the people - closed-in on themselves" - go.

Be first to offer a hand to someone near you.

When you're tired & seeming futile to go on

you are tracing a way,another will follow on

 

3) The 13th of May

The Thirteenth of May at the Cova D'Iria Appeared Oh so brilliant the Virgin Maria.

Chorus Ave Ave Ave Maria (twice).

The Virgin Maria encircled with Light,

Our own dearest Mother

and Heaven's Delight. Chorus Ave

To three little shepherds Our Lady appeared. The light of her graces to her Son souls endeared. Chorus Ave

She told us that Jesus is too much offended

And asked that our living be firmly amended

Chorus Ave Ave Ave Maria (twice). She warned of behaviour from which we must turn, Of thoughts, words and actions

Which Christians must spurn. Chorus Ave

With war and its evils the whole world was seething, And countless of thousands were mourning and weeping.Chorus Ave

To save all poor Souls who had wandered astray, With sweet words of comfort She asked us to pray. Chorus Ave

Our homes and our country we place in Thy keeping To love Thee and serve Thee in gladness and weeping. Chorus Ave

We pray for the Vicar of Christ on whom presses, The weight of the world and its cruel distresses. Chorus Ave

Oh Queen of the Rosary be Thou our Salvation Our Refuge in Life and our true consolation. Chorus Ave

 

4) The Lourdes Ave

The bells of the Angelus are calling to pray In sweet tones announcing the sacred Ave. Refrain: Ave Ave Ave Maria (twice)

An Angel of Mercy led Bernadette's feet

Where flows the deep torrent

Our Lady to greet.

Refrain: Ave Ave Ave Maria (twice)

 

5) I am going to see Her one day

I am going to see Her one day,

in heaven my Fatherland,

I am going to see Mary,

my joy and my love

Refrain: To heaven To heaven To heaven

I am going to see Her one day (x2)

I am going to see Her one day.

It is my cry of hope

which fills me with constancy

on my journey amid the pain.

Refrain: I am going to see Her one day,

Leaving this exile behind

I will rest my head

on her Son's heart. Refrain

 

6) I salute thee, O Holy Cross

Refrain: I salute thee, O Holy Cross,

that bore the Redeemer,

every tongue & heart sings thee joy, honour and praise.

Thou art Christ's glorious standard,

his victory and sign of love,

His innocent Blood was seen

like a flame springing from his heart Ref.

You were born amid the loving arms

of a Virgin Mother, O Jesus,

You died bewixt the pitiful arms

of a Cross, that to you, was given. Ref.

O Divine Lamb, that was immolated

upon a cruel Cross, have mercy!

You, who take away the sin of the world,

save man who has no peace. Ref.

 

7) Long live the Cross! Long live Lentini!

Introduction: Lets look at the Cross

with Servant Lentini:

Lets shout out hurray:

Oh Long live the Cross!

Basic Oh Long live the Cro-ss!

Melody 1doh 2fah 2fah 1soh 2lah-2lah

Numbers= Oh Long live Len-teen-ee!

no. of beats 1tah 2lah 2soh 1lah 2soh 2fah,

Hur- ray for the Cro-ss!

1doh 2fah 2fah1soh 2lah-2lah

that he loved so dear- ly.

1tah 2lah 2soh 1lah 2soh 2fah

1) Hurray for the Cross!

the fountain of glory

th' eternal memorial

of my Redeemer.

(Chorus) Oh Long the Cross!

Oh Long live Lentini!

Hurray for the Cross! that he loved so dearly.

2) Hurray for the Cross!

Oh Long live the Cross!

Hurray for the Cross!

and He who did carry it.

(Chorus) Oh Long live the Cross!

Oh Long live Lentini!

Hurray for the Cross! that he loved so dearly

3) (The Servant Dominic Lentini calls to us)

Oh come all ye faithful,

let ye praise the Cross,

Oh raise up your voices:

'Christ-Sun' hath loved us! (Chorus)

4) (Prostrated thy faithful Servant adores thee) I adore thee, prostrated,

O Cross adorable(=a-dor-ab-le)

by Heaven so prepared

the world for to save. (Chorus)

5) Oh happy that heart is

that fixated solely

on Crucified God who

so greatly has loved us. (Chorus)

6) O Standard of glory

O God's peace so welcome

and wood of life-giving

by Heav'n art created (Chorus)

7) The Cross must be honoured

that Tree thus unconquered

by whom now defeated

the abyss doth tremble (Chorus)

8) O Follow, ye faithful

the Way of the Cross

that to peace so glorious

is able to guide you (Chorus)

Appendix 6 MEMBERSHIP CARDS

 

 

 

 

 

 

I ............................................................

Address ...................................................

................................................................

..................NAME ETC. [IN BLOCK CAPITALS]

I ask to be enrolled in Venerable Lentini's

Congregation of Our Lady of Dolours

and I choose as my prayer-day each month

the F ¨ o I will pray on that day,

by myself o Please tick @ Ö

in family o

in church o

Signature ........................................

Date: / /199

 

I ......................................................

Address ...................................................

...............................................................

.................NAME ETC. IN [BLOCK CAPITALS]

I ask to be enrolled in Venerable Lentini's

Congregation of Our Lady of Dolours

and I choose as my prayer-day each month

the F o o I will pray on that day,

by myself o Ö Please tick @ Ö

in family o

in church o

Signature ...........................................................

Date: / /199

 

I ......................................................

Address ...................................................

.........................................................................................NAME ETC. [IN BLOCK CAPITALS]

I ask to be enrolled in Venerable Lentini's

Congregation of Our Lady of Dolours

and I choose as my prayer-day each month

the F ¨ ¨ I will pray on that day,

by myself o Ö Please tick @ Ö

in family o

in church o

Signature..........................................................Date: / /199

 

I ............................................................

Address ...................................................

...............................................................

..................NAME ETC. IN BLOCK CAPITALS]

I ask to be enrolled in Venerable Lentini's

Congregation of Our Lady of Dolours

and I choose as my prayer-day each month

the F ¨ o I will pray on that day,

by myself o Please tick @ Ö

in family o

in church o

Signature ........................................

Date: / /199

 

I ............................................................

Address ...................................................

................................................................

..................NAME ETC. IN BLOCK CAPITALS]

I ask to be enrolled in Venerable Lentini's

Congregation of Our Lady of Dolours

and I choose as my prayer-day each month

the F ¨ o I will pray on that day,

by myself o Please tick @ Ö

in family o

in church o

Signature ........................................

Date: / /199

 

I ............................................................

Address ...................................................

................................................................

..................NAME ETC. IN BLOCK CAPITALS]

I ask to be enrolled in Venerable Lentini's

Congregation of Our Lady of Dolours

and I choose as my prayer-day each month

the F ¨ o I will pray on that day,

by myself o Please tick @ Ö

in family o

in church o

Signature .......................................

Date: / /199

 

Appendix 7: THE PRAYERS

>/p>

Congregation

of Our Lady

of Dolours

 

 

 

The Congregation of Our Lady of Dolours founded by Ven.Dominic Lentini in order

to remember Mary's sorrows every day was revived on 2 February 1989 with the very same aims and structure. It is sufficient to choose one day of the month in which to remember Mary's sorrows throughout your life - during any hour of that day anywhere on your own or in a group - with the sole obligation of love and devotion. In the months lacking the day chosen this may be done beforehand or afterwards. In order to join it is sufficient to sendyour own name indicating the day chosen. Enrolment is for life. The little black crucifix is the only badge to have on during the prayers and in any other circumstances at your own discretion. It is received at the Little House along with your Consecration to the Cross. Whoever cannot come to Lauria for same may obtain the crucifix at any Repository. The contact that has promised to mail them on our behalf is:

Peter Byrne,

52 Mangerton Road,

Drimnagh, Dublin 12 Ireland

(

I WILL PRAY EVERY F ¨ o

OF THE MONTH

 

CONSECRATION TO THE CROSS

and prayer of intercession to Lentini

G G G

 

Eternal Love of the Father, Son and Holy Spirit, we contemplate in the Priest Dominic Lentini the marvels of your holiness. We thank you for this gift made to the people of Lauria and the world and we promise to imitate him and make him known.

Today we sacrifice ourselves like him for the conversion of sinners and the sanctity of Priests, so that the Church may be enriched by his model of life and may follow him in his total participation in the mystery of the Cross. In the name of his Crucifix we pray you to give us also his spirit of love and reparation to the sorrows of Jesus and Our Lady of Dolours.

And now through his intercession we ask you for every blessing and spiritual and temporal grace (and specially for ................)

I Pater, Ave, Gloria.

 

- Praise and honour to thee, Christ Jesus.

- Praise and honour to thee, Christ the Saviour of the world.

 

 

Meetings at the Little House

Thursdays at 16.00 - On 24th monthly at 21.00

 

PRAYERS TO BE RECITED

 

 

1) VIA CRUCIS

(from the "Misericordia" booklet)

 

 

At the beginning (if in group, say together): Eternal Father I offer thee the sorrowful Passion of thy Son in expiation for our sins and those of the whole world.

 

At each Station:

Have mercy on us and on the whole world + I Pater

 

1 For the sake of his condemnation and death,

11 - For the sake of the cross laden

on his back,

111 - For the sake of his first fall,

1V - For the sake of the tears of his Mother who came to meet him,

V - For the sake of his agonising fatigue causing a man to be forced to help him,

VI - For the sake of the compassion of the woman who wiped his face covered

in blood,

V11 - For the sake of his second fall,

V111 - For the sake of his words to the women who pitied him,

IX - For the sake of his third fall,

X - For the sake of that burning pain which his body showed when stripped,

X1 - For the sake of the horrible piercing

of the nails through his hands and feet,

X11 - For the sake of the blood and water gushing from his heart as a fountain

of every good for us,

X111 - For the sake of the image of every distress which his Mother showed now holding him dead in her arms which we call "The Pietà",

X1V - For the sake of the stone which closed his tomb,

XV - For the sake of his glorious

Resurrection.

 

2) SORROWFUL MYSTERIES

OF THE ROSARY

(traditional or inspired)

 

Traditional:

1) Jesus' agony in the Garden.

2) The scourging of Jesus at the Pillar.

3) The crowning with thorns.

4) Jesus' journey to Calvary laden with the Cross.

5) His crucifixion and death.

Inspired:

1st Mystery: Jesus is in the Garden of Olives crying because nobody understands him.

2nd Mystery: Jesus is tied to the pillar

because he loves us.

3rd Mystery: Jesus lets himself be crowned with thorns to make us understand that one is King by loving.

4th: Jesus goes up to Calvary to bring us

to the Father.

5th: Jesus achieves the Victory of the Cross to give us eternal Life.

 

3) THE CHAPLET OF THE

SEVEN DOLOURS OF THE

BLESSED VIRGIN MARY

 

1 - dolour: The old man Simeon tells Mary that a sword of sorrow will pierce her soul.

At each dolour:

1 Pater, 3 Ave and: Mother full of mercy, remind our hearts of the sufferings of Jesus during his Passion.

11 - dolour: the flight into Egypt.

111 - dolour: the finding in the Temple.

1V - dolour: Mary meets her Son laden

with the Cross.

V - dolour: Mary at the foot of the Cross.

V1 - dolour: Mary receives the dead body

of her Son.

V11 - dolour: Mary at the tomb of Jesus.

 

Back- cover (Text):

Do not forget me since I have loved ye so much

 

Brochure

Foundation

Venerable Dominic Lentini

Lauria

 

Study Conference

 

"Dominic Lentini contemplative

and ascetic

in Southern Italy"

 

Hotel Isola Lauria

14-15-16 October 1994

 

At the close of the first Study Conference about Venerable Lentini (1985) the opportuneness of preparing a subsequent Convention was expressed which would have as its objective the spirituality of the Venerable himself.

Lentini's times are long ago but are always ordained by providential coincidences.

To the anecdotal and hagiographic phase made up of memories, of testimonies, mostly from the Diocesan and the Apostolic Proceedings

and to the phase of historical and sociological investigation there now follows a third one which is certainly more difficult but no less fascinating: that of reading "on the inside" as to the how - meaning - how the priest Lentini placed himself before the Lord.

Just two centuries ago on June 8th 1794 he was ordained a priest.

 

PROGRAMME

 

Friday 14 October

 

16.30 Greetings and Registration

17.00 Introduction to Conference by His Excellency Mons.Antonio Cantisani, Archbishop:

"Dominic Lentini pastor of souls"

18.00 Prof.Pietro Zovatto

"18th century Spirituality

in Southern Italy"

 

Saturday 15 October

 

9.00 Prof. Cataldo Naro

"The Spirituality of Dominic Lentini"

11.00 Prof. V. Robles

"The Saints who have taken Dominic Lentini as their model and guide"

16.00 Prof.P. Borzomati

"Dominic Lentini's Spirit- uality and Piety in the most recent studies"

Sunday 16 October

10.00 Summing-up of the Conference

Prof. Giorgio Rossi

11.30 Solemn Eucharistic Concelebration presided over by His Excellency Mons. Rocco Talucci in the parish Church of St.Nicola

 

Technical Notes

1. The sessions will be in the Conference Hall at Lauria's Hotel Isola.

2. Every report-session will be followed by discussion and sharing.

3. Meals will be taken at the Hotel: 8.30 Breakfast 13.30 Dinner

20.00 Supper

4.Conference participants will be accommodated in local hotels (2nd class). The all inclusive contrib -ution for participating is expected to be set at L. 100,000.

5. How to get to Lauria:

By means of the A3 SA-RC motorway with turn-offs at Lauria North and South; or by using the 585 Superstrada of the Fondo Valley of the Noce with turn-off at Lauria; or by State Railway on Naples-Reggio Calabria Line getting off at either: Maratea, Sapri or 'Praia a Mare' stations.

 

 

English Edition's Footnotes