As the city Rio de Janeiro prepares to welcome scores of young people to World Youth Day, Brazil also prepares for its celebration of the Orionino Missionary Year, an event which marks 100th anniversary since the arrival of the Orionini missionaries to the country.
According to Agenzia Fides, the first missionaries of the “Work of Divine Providence” were sent to Brazil by the founder, Don Orione, a century ago: on December 17, 1913. They left from Genoa and landed at the port of Santos on December 29, 1913, then went by train to Mar de Espanha, in the State of Minas Gerais, on January 2, 1914.
“That departure was the first opening of the Congregation beyond the borders of Italy. Today we are present in 32 countries,” according to a joint letter written by Sister Maria Mabel Spagnuolo, superior general of the Little Missionary Sisters of Charity and Don Flavio Peloso, superior general of the Sons of Divine Providence. The Orionino Missionary Year will go from October 20 2013 to 8 December 2014.
The beginning of the Missionary Year, which will run from October 20, 2013 to December 8, 2014, will take place at the Marian Shrine of Aparecida, in Brazil. It will coincide with the pilgrimage of all the Don Orione Family in the country. At the end of the General Assembly of the Sons of Divine Providence, it will gather a broad representation of religious and laity, all St. Luigi Orione’s apostolate, who are engaged in different fields of apostolate: vocational orientation, religious formation, evangelization, catechesis, missions, ecumenism, the sick, orphans, the elderly, physically and mentally handicapped, popular schools, educational assistance, speakers, youth centers, workers, parishes in poor areas.