Claretian Missionaries - East Nigeria Province

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Retreat for the IHM Secretariat

On the 1st of April 2017, the Immaculate Heart of Mary Secretariat of the Province organized a one-day recollection for the devotees of the Immaculate Heart of Mary. The theme of the programme was “Imitating the Virtues of the Blessed Virgin Mary”. The event which kicked off at 9:00am began with the Exposition of the Blessed Sacrament and the praying of the Holy Rosary along with a penitential service. It was a moment of deep personal encounter with the Lord in the Holy Eucharist.


In a talk delivered by Fr. Emmanuel Ukata, the Assistant Director of the Secretariat, he enumerated some prominent virtues of the Blessed Virgin Mary such as humility, fraternal charity, docility, gentleness, kindness, patience, and so on, and enjoined the devotees to strive to emulate Mother Mary’s lifestyle. He buttressed the manifestations of these virtues using the mysteries of the Holy Rosary. The attitude of the Blessed Virgin Mary he said towards God before whom she was a lowly handmaid and towards the people of God for whom she remains a model and mother could be seen in the words of the Magnificat. With these words, he called on the faithful to strive to ponder on the life of Mary during the programme as she was a perfect disciple of her son, Jesus Christ.


The programme came to a close with the Eucharistic Celebration well animated by the devotees. At the end of the Holy Mass, the participants all processed outside the chapel for the prayer of consecration and the lighting of the candles before the gigantic statue of the Blessed Virgin Mary. This exercise marked the end of the event.