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On 25th May SCC celebrated our feastday, Our Lady of the Way. After Mass residents of Mater Christi and the Village along with staff shared a bountiful morning tea in the MG hall. It was the first time the feast has been celebrated, and hopefully will become an annual event for SCC.

Different representations of Mary remind us of her attributes, just like photos of our own mothers. Our Lady of the Way was chosen our patron for the way she nurtured and guided Jesus form his childhood to the cross and resurrection.

Around Marian Grove and Mater Christi we see the familiar painting of Madonnina, (Little Mother) by Roberto Ferruzzi. The story of the painting tells us something of the Mother of God.

Sheltering her baby brother from the cold, 11year old Angelina walked along a street in Venice in 1875. The artist Roberto Ferruzzi, captivated by her maternal gentleness, painted her and called it Madonnina. Her mother was so embarrassed she swore the girl to secrecy. Angelina kept the secret all her life.

However, the image was instantly seen as a contemporary Mary and Jesus, and came to be known as Our Lady of the Way. No-one ever knew the model.

Angelina married, emigrated to America, and bore ten children by the time her husband died aged 42. She collapsed emotionally, could not care for her children, lost contact with her Italian family and never recovered. Her children cared for each other and her until she died in 1972. Eventually in 1984 they located and visited one of Angelina’s 13 siblings in Venice. After asking for a photo, they were passed a holy card of Our Lady of the Way, Angelina and baby Giovanni.

Like Angelina, the life of Mary the mother of Jesus was neither easy or straightforward, yet it has full of serenity and hope. Maybe that is why she has been an inspiration for two thousand years.

Matt Digges

Director of Mission

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