to Letter Titles
Milan: January 1, 2011
Solemnity of Mary, Mother of God
TO THE NATIONAL AND REGIONAL DIRECTORS OF THE M.M.P. :
At the beginning of this new year, I am close to you with my brotherly affection
and with my prayer, so that together we can look at the times that await us with
trust and with great hope.
In the face of the events through which we are living, that each day have become
more painful and menacing, our safe refuge becomes solely the Immaculate Heart
In the homily that I gave at Fatima on October 25, 2010, during the
concelebration that concluded the long journey that I made in Europe for the
cenacles of the MMP, I said:
“Here at Fatima, You called me to this work and You entrusted to me the task of
going everywhere, to invite all priests to consecrate themselves to your
Immaculate Heart. I have accomplished this mission of yours in these years,
having made 1,500 flights and many other trips by car and by train. I have gone
many times to the five continents, to lead my brother priests to make the
consecration to your Immaculate Heart. The majority of them are already
in Heaven and many others are still on this earth.
“But this year an extraordinary event occurred. On May 12, here in this Cova da
Iria, before You, the Holy Father Benedict XVI consecrated all of the priests of
the world to your Immaculate Heart. Therefore with this consecration, it seems
as if my task might be finished and that my journey would have come to an end – maybe yes for one part, which is
the task of leading everyone to the consecration.
“Today, however, we need to begin a new and more important itinerary:
living our consecration.
“If we live the consecration, our life becomes transformed by your maternal
love, and we ourselves become rays of your love which spreads ever more in every
part of the world. We become enlightened, sanctified and transformed by Love.”
(Homily of Fr. Stefano Gobbi, October 25, 2010, Fatima)
In 2010, I was able to take part in regional cenacles in these ten countries:
Brazil, Bolivia, Peru, Slovenia, Italy, Switzerland, Germany, France, Spain and
I went to Europe and America. With 30 flights, I visited 70 cities and presided
over 110 cenacles, in which 2 cardinals, 45 bishops, 1500 priests and 350,000
In Collevalenza [Italy], at the Spiritual Exercises [Retreat] held in the form
of a continuous cenacle, 1 cardinal, 21 archbishops and bishops and 300 priests
from the five continents took part.
I entrust, to the Will of the Lord and to the plan of the Immaculate Heart of
Mary, the fulfillment of the schedule of cenacles that I have prepared for this
1. THE SPIRITUAL EXERCISES
In Collevalenza, from June 26 - July 2, at the Shrine of Merciful Love, there
will take place the Spiritual Exercises [Retreat] for the bishops and priests of
the Marian Movement of Priests from Europe, America, Africa, Asia and Oceania.
I inform you of the following:
There will be room for all in the same house.
Few laypersons will be allowed
to attend (only those who have a position of responsibility in the MMP).
- As always, address all inquiries and reservation requests to:
P. Florio Quercia S.J.
Via Carlo Marx, 1
Centro San Francesco de Geronimo
74023 Grottaglie (TA)
Fax: +39 099 5635710
Cell (Mobile): +39 333 6322248
2. REGIONAL CENACLES ABROAD:
Because of my age and my precarious state of health, this year I thought of
omitting my trip to South America, after having gone 24 consecutive times in all
of Brazil and Latin America.
If my strength permits, I intend to go to Slovenia on June 25, and to
the United States of America (U.S.A.) and Mexico from September 15 - November
I entrust to the National Directors the task of giving me a few days of rest
during my very tiring journey.
3. REGIONAL CENACLES IN ITALY:
Firenze-March 22; Collevalenza-March 24; San Gabriele-March 28;
Pompei-March 31; San Giovanni Rotondo-April 5; Padova-April 12;
La Spezia-May 4; Bologna-May 6; Caravaggio-May 13; Capriana-May 28;
4. TO BE TRANSFORMED BY LOVE
“Jesus is Merciful Love, because He wants to draw all into the burning furnace
of his divine
love. Allow yourselves to be drawn by Him. Do not resist his calls. Walk with me
road of his divine love. Beloved sons, you too must make your own the sweet
experience of your
love for Jesus.” (To the Priests, Our Lady's Beloved Sons (TTP), October 1,
Love for Jesus must lead us to live for Him, to offer Him every beat of our
heart, to let ourselves burn in the ardent fire of his divine charity and, above
all, to follow Him on the road that He himself was the first to travel.
The road that we must travel to arrive at the perfect imitation of Jesus is
traced out with clarity in the Immaculate Heart of Mary, in order that He can
transform us in his own Love.
a) Love in the renouncing of oneself
“The first stage is that of renunciation and self-denial.
It is necessary to renounce oneself, as well as all disordered attachments,
desires, ambitions. Even in your apostolic labors, you are never to seek success
approval. Rather have a love for being hidden, for an apostolate carried out in
humility, and the daily and faithful fulfillment of your duties. In this way you
will mortify egoism
which constitutes your greatest peril, the easiest and most customary of the
snares by which my
Adversary attempts to impede your journey.” (TTP, March 5, 1983, 260c-e)
The most efficacious means of combating and of conquering one’s own pride is
putting ourselves in an attitude of simplicity and of humility, following the
way of evangelical littleness. This is why, at the beginning of this interior
itinerary, living the experience of spiritual childhood becomes indispensable.
“All must travel along this road [of spiritual childhood], even those who are
in age, and who occupy important posts; even those who are learned, formed by
years of study
and experience; even those who are rich in culture and who have been called to
perform tasks of
Allied with your human growth, which unfolds itself over the years, I am asking
you for a
spiritual childhood, an interior littleness leading you to robe yourselves in
the humility and in the very fragility itself of my Child Jesus.
I want to see in you the candid hearts of children, knowing nothing of egoism
and sin, open to
love and to giving, expecting everything from the Heavenly Father so as to be
able to give
I want to see in you the virginal hearts of children, still firmly shut to the
snares of deceit and
duplicity, opening like flowers to receive the rays of knowledge, truth and
I want to see in you the docile wills of little ones, like fragile clay ready to
let themselves be
formed with trust and abandonment; wills which must be molded by the good and
strengthening themselves by pursuing what is good and what is beautiful.
This way of spiritual childhood must of necessity be traversed by you, beloved
sons, if you wish
to live in a perfect manner the consecration to my Immaculate Heart.” (TTP, February 2, 1983, 258 j-o)
b) Love in the carrying of one’s own Cross
A priest who is formed by Mary to the renunciation and denial of himself, and to
make himself little and humble of heart – he too is called to suffer always
The moment of suffering is precious and must be welcomed by each one of us with
meekness and trust, because it assimilates us to Jesus Priest and Victim. It
makes us collaborators in his work of salvation, and it is so fruitful in these
times of purification.
“In this [suffering] you are shaped into the likeness of Jesus Crucified.
This interior crucifixion will take place each day and in every moment of your
priestly day…It is
above all in your priestly suffering that souls can be begotten by you to the
life of grace and to
salvation.” (TTP, March 5, 1983, 260jkl)
“Your suffering, my sons, is truly contributing to the purification of the
If the chastisement comes, it will be only as an ultimate and solemn demand for
bring about the renewal of the world and the salvation of so many poor children
of mine. But nothing contributes so much to the triumph of my Immaculate Heart as a
priestly heart which suffers. In you, my sons, it is Jesus who continues his
mission of redemption. Only his blood can wash away all the evil, all the hatred
and all the sin of the world.
And so, now that the moment of the purification is here, you will be called upon
to suffer more
and more.” (TTP, September 15, 1975, 81 r-u)
But we must not wait for great and extraordinary sufferings.
The Blessed Mother asks us for small and hidden sufferings, those that come to
us from carrying well the cross of one’s own ministry and of living every moment
of the day in the spirit of immolation.
“In moments of prayer, which is so greatly necessary and which must be the
center of your life;
in that most precious moment of the celebration of Holy Mass, when with Jesus
you too are
interiorly immolated for the life of the world; in your fidelity to the priestly
duties proper to the
ministry of each one; in evangelization, in catechizing, in teaching, in the
apostolate of charity;
with each person you meet, especially the very poor, the lonely and forsaken,
those who feel
themselves despised and rejected by all. In your priestly apostolate never seek to please yourselves or to procure some
advantage; give yourselves always with all the inexhaustible force of love, and
do not let
ingratitude stop you or misunderstandings stand in your way; indifference should
not make you
hesitate, nor should lack of cooperation cause you to become weary.” (TTP, March 5, 1983, 260 k-l)
c) Love in following Jesus to Calvary
If we know how to suffer and to offer in this way in our life, then we travel
with Jesus toward the Calvary of our perfect immolation.
“Therefore, you, my beloved, who are his priests, you too are called to follow
him each day
toward the consummation of your paschal immolation for the salvation of all.”
(TTP, March 5, 1983, 260 o)
Here too, we are speaking, above all, of an interior immolation.
“Today the voices of condemnation are for you the shouts of those who reject and
Sins, committed but then justified and no longer atoned for, are for you the
painful strokes of the
scourge. The errors, which threaten to estrange great numbers of souls from the
faith, are for
you the crown of thorns. Today, to remain faithful to your calling is to follow
the stern path that
leads to Calvary.” (TTP, March 5, 1983, 260p)
But we must be ready to offer our very life because, in the conclusive times of
the great tribulation, the supreme testimony of martyrdom could be asked of us.
“Together with me, suffer the judgment of the world, the rejection, the
persecution and the
condemnation on the part of a society which continues to deny its God and to
walk in the
darkness of perversion, of hatred and of immorality.
Together with me, carry your heavy cross each day. Pour out, with love, your
yourselves to be placed on the altar of his very scaffold.
Meek as lambs, allow your hands and your feet to be also transfixed with nails:
suffer and offer yourselves to the Father, with love, for the salvation of all.”
(TTP, April 17, 1981, 224klm)
To be able to succeed in loving Jesus with her own ardor, to imitate Him with
her own fidelity, and to bring Him back to life by passing through the way of
her own maternal love is the goal to which we are led by our consecration to the
Immaculate Heart of Mary.
In this way, Jesus can live in each one of us, and the strength of his divine
Love will consume us in a perfect union. Thus the mystery of our being
identified in Him is realized.
My body in your Body; my blood in your Blood; my soul in your Soul; my spirit in
your Spirit; my heart in your Heart; my mind in your Mind; my intelligence in
your Intelligence; my will in your Will; my liberty in your Liberty.
For each one of us the same experience of St. Paul is fulfilled: “For to me life
is Christ, and death is gain” (Philippians 1:21), because I go to remain with
In this way, our consecration to the Immaculate Heart of Mary leads us to be
enlightened, sanctified and transformed by Jesus-Love.
Because in actuality, what is the triumph of the Immaculate Heart if not the
immaculate triumph of the Heart; if not the immaculate triumph of Love? Thus one
can understand how the triumph of the Immaculate Heart of Mary coincides with
the triumph of the Merciful Love of Jesus.
With the triumph of Merciful Love, the Divine Mercy comes down as a dew to
revive the aridity of this humanity that will be renewed in love and by love
and, in this way, it will know a new civilization: the civilization of love. In
the Immaculate Heart of Mary, it is we who become the artisans of this new
In the profound darkness that pervades the world and obscures the Church, we
look to you, Our Lady of Fatima, Woman clothed with the Sun, to gaze with you
toward Heaven, and in this way to understand that the great day of the Lord is
close, [and] that we must prepare ourselves for the return of Jesus in glory,
the radiant Sun of Justice, who will form the new heavens and the new earth.
Come Lord Jesus!
I entrust to you, who are the directors, the task of sending this letter to the
members of the Marian Movement of Priests, that it may be read and well
meditated by them.
To all of you, I offer my affectionate greeting along with my priestly blessing.
I await your response, informing me of your news.
In the Immaculate Heart of Mary,
Your little brother,
Fr. Stefano Gobbi
Movimento Sacerdotale Mariano - Via Terruggia, 14 - 20162 Milano
Movimento Sacerdotale Mariano - Via Terruggia, 14 - 20162 Milano
Official English translation
U.S. National Headquarters