How fortunate you are, David, the Lord asks you to witness his merciful love!

The Augustinian recollection David Enrique Conejo (Carthage, Costa Rica, 1993) issued last Friday, September 4, Augustinian feast of Our Lady of Consolation, the solemn profession of evangelical councils and was admitted in perpetuity as a member of the Order of Augustinian Recollects.
News | 2020 Sep 07

The ceremony of David Conejo's solemn profession  began at eight o'clock in the afternoon at the parish temple of Santa Rita in Madrid, where all necessary precautions were taken to preserve the health of those present and comply with current legislation for acts of worship and meetings of groups of people.

David was physically accompanied by fewer people than he wished to be there for this reason: the church had plenty of space even though there were 17 concelebrators  accompanying the provincial prior, Sergio Sánchez, who presided over the Eucharist and received David's vows; about 80 lay people convenientlydistributed to leave a distance of at least a 6 feet between them; and about 15 professed Augustinians Recollects and Augustinians, who had until recently been David's fellow students.

Many more accompanied David via social media, as the ceremony was broadcast live with a reach of about 2,200 people between the platforms of the Province of St. Nicholas on Facebook and YouTube.The time of the celebration had been scheduled to allow for greater attendance: in the country of origin of David, Costa Rica, it was noon at the time the broadcast began.

Another of the characteristic notes of the celebration was the modification of one of the most exciting rites of the religious profession, the welcoming embrace; under normal conditions, once the new profess has issued the profession and has been accepted by the provincial prior on behalf of the prior general, he would have received a warm embrace of welcome from all the professed present at the ceremony.

This time only the provincial prior was able to give the hug, but what David received was a warm applausefrom all the participants in the event and, without a doubt, from many of those who attended through digital media. David was moved at this moment.

The provincial prior addressed David in a special way during the homily in a warm and grateful manner. First, he asked him to live this day as a true gift:

David, how fortunate you are, loved especially by the Lord, to witness his merciful love! This is what the Lord asks of you and the others wait. Live it simply, thestimanialo with your life in constant gratitude.

Secondly, the provincial prior did not miss the date on which the profession was celebrated: The Solemnity of Our Lady of Consolation, one of the Marian meanings most beloved by the Augustinian Family. And also dear to David, who left at his feet a candle and to which he addressed especially in a few final words that we will point out. David is also a visual artist who has already painted Our Lady of Consolation. The provincial prior could not let this rather intended coincidence pass:

Life is intertwined with moments of joy, growth, and fullness, with stages of sadness, pain and suffering, loneliness, and love. We need the brothers, and Mary wants to be in the hustle and bustle of your life. She is the bearer of true consolation, Christ Jesus.

After alluding precisely to the biblical texts that were read in the Liturgy on consolation and the art ofcomforting others, the provincial prior finally wanted to remind David's family, who by social networks attended the celebration:

Carmen, your mother, and your sisters Myriam and Melania, who see you from Costa Rica, I want to thank you. Your family is part of this vocational story. Today they are especially blessed, not only right now, but your whole life. David, honor your family.

At the end of the Eucharist it was the neo-test who, at the time of thanksgiving, addressed everyone. These were his words:

Dear Brothers:
The celebration that we are about to end reminds me of the celebration in which St. Augustine, once the deacon finished proclaiming a passage from the Acts of the Apostles, took the book into his hands and reread it, telling the gathered people that these lines summarized the purpose that he and his community brethren had set out as ideal for achieving holiness , and asking them to pray for them, so that they could get it.
With the religious profession, I have expressed before all of you a desire, a project and a way of life that I want to assume in the company of my Augustinians. It is the same purpose that many of those present expressed at the time, and which today, like St Augustine, I ask you to help us realize.
The success of this project depends, in everything, on God, who arouses desire and gives the means to carry it out, but also feeds on the prayers of the community in which religious are present as servants, brothers and companions on the way.
Therefore, brethren, let us not stop praying for one another, so that we may all be a sign of consolation and hope in the midst of the tribulations that as a Church and society we are facing, especially in this difficult year and in which they will come.
I thank the Lord Jesus Christ from the depths of my heart for calling me to be his disciple, and in the midst of this assembly I praise him for all the gifts he has given me so that he can respond affirmatively to his project. With Mary I can proclaim that he, looking at the lowness of his servant, looking at all my faults with mercy, has done wonders in me. Holy is his name!
To all of you gathered here, to those who accompany us in prayer and through digital, family, religious, members of the Seglar Fraternity, friends and all who are part of my history: Thank you for your companionship and affection! In you today the communion of the Mother Church is manifested, which welcomes the holy purposes of her children and confirms them in faith, hope and love.
To you, Mother of Consolation, road companion and luminous star, on this day when we proclaim you Blessed, I thank you for your constant presence in my life and in my vocation. Your name goes through all the pages that make up the book of my life. As a sign of my devotion to you, I have a rosary knotted at my waist today, but it is in my heart that you have a throne and an altar. He engraves in him the name of Jesus, so that, carried after Him, he may be attracted by the smell of his perfumes and follow him wherever he goes.
Lady of our Order cover us with your mantle and bring us closer to your heart. It reigns in each of us as queens already with Christ in heaven, where you, figure of the Church, await us, standing to his right, clothed in sun and full of light.
Mother of Consolation, sweet Mother of love, pray for us.

There was no food to share for much time to depart. By small groups several were congratulating the newly professed; although the masks and protocols prevented physical contact, they were sincere congratulations and even received some gift from the Augustinian-Recollect Female Lay Fraternities who were present.

David will now continue his service to the People of God by preparing himself with the study of Patristic Sciences in Rome. Thus he will be able to approach Augustine of Hippo and other Fathers of the Church from many aspects: as a religious, as a bishop, as a doctor of the Church, as an older brother of so many lives who, like David's, follow in his footsteps in common life and service to the People of God.

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Augustinian Recollects Province of St. Nicholas of Tolentine.

Paseo de la Habana, 167. 28036 - Madrid, Spain. Telephone: 913 453 460. CIF(fiscal registration number): R-2800087-E. Entered in the Register of Religious Organizations, of the Ministry of Justice, number 1398-a-SE/B. Develepod by Shunet for OAR Augustinian Recollects Province of St. Nicholas of Tolentine. © 2018 - 2020.