A thanksgiving for a path of communion

The Prior General has sent a message of congratulations to the Augustinian Recollects Sisters, who are celebrating this week the 50th anniversary of their recognition as an Institute of Pontifical Right.

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The congregation of the Augustinian Recollects Sisters is celebrating. During 2020, the religious of the Augustinian Recollect family celebrate the 50th anniversary of the definitive approval by the Holy See that elevated them to the status of a congregation of pontifical right. This is one of the most relevant events of the congregation since its beginning, around 1725. For this reason, the Prior General has sent the religious a message of congratulations and thanks for these years.

Miguel Miró, who will participate in one of the acts of this anniversary, has thanked “the help and collaboration of the Augustinian Recollect Sisters”, especially in what refers to vocation promotion and other projects of the Augustinian Recollect family. The General asked not to remain alone with the past: “We want to live the present by intensifying communion and thus look to the future with hope”.

In his message he highlights the close link that has existed between the Order of Augustinian Recollects and the Augustinian Recollects Sisters from its beginnings to the present day. “The relationship of the congregation with the Order has always been deep and familiar,” he says.

United from the beginning

Miró recalls the beginnings of the movement with the Talangpaz sisters. The two women received the habit of Augustinian Recollect tertiaries in 1725 and from that moment they began “common life, recollection, prolonged prayer, ascetic practices and manual work,” he explains.

From that moment on, the congregation grew, although at a very slow pace, until the beginning of the 20th century, thanks to the support of the Augustinian Recollect religious, they grew progressively. The Prior General concretely remembers the Augustinian Recollect Celestino Yoldi. “Under his direction the old building was remodeled (referring to the convent annexed to the Basilica of Saint Sebastian in Manila), the school of Saint Rita was opened, the first public vows were taken and the novitiate was organized,” he explains.

Miguel Miró also recalls one of his predecessors, Prior General Gerardo Larrondo, who intervened to regulate the life of the sisters and prepare them to become a congregation of temporary vows. Later, it would be recognized as a congregation of diocesan right, which the Prior General valued as “an event of capital importance in its history”. After extending its presence to China and more parts of the Philippines, through the educational apostolate in colleges and universities, the congregation obtained recognition as an institute of pontifical right on November 20, 1970 with the Decretum laudis of the Congregation of Religious.

A broad program of celebration

To commemorate our golden anniversary as a congregation, the Augustinian Recollects Sisters have prepared an extensive program of events to thank God for these 50 years. All events will take place this week and will culminate on November 20, the anniversary date.

In the days leading up to the event, thanksgiving Eucharists and various conferences on the history of the congregation will be held, all of which will be in virtual format. On November 20, the great virtual event will take place in which the messages of Pope Francis, Archbishop Gabriele Giordano Caccia and other prelates, and the Prior General of the Order of Augustinian Recollects will be read. Videos related to this 50th anniversary will also be shown.