Living the charism – Central and Eastern Europe

Our charism, which God confided to Mary of the Passion, commits us to follow Christ as he gave himself up to the Father for the salvation of the world, in the mystery of his Incarnation and his Pasch. – CS 2

I am convinced that reading these words, many of us could say: I know them, I have read them many times, they seem familiar to me. That would probably be enough, if it were not for the fact that they are not just words, but a very specific invitation to make of our life a GIFT. At different stages of formation I have discovered these words differently and it always happens because I feel the truth that charism is life. The charism lives, if I live.

This charism is lived in the fundamental attitude that was Mary’s in her Ecce and the Fiat: she offered her whole being in complete and loving disponibility, in faith and humble service, so that the Spirit might carry out the Father’s work in her.– CS 2

Therefore, we cannot say that we receive nothing in giving anything. In Mary, the Holy Spirit has done great things, can He not do the same in me?

In the service that I have been undertaking for 15 years, in the catechesis of children and young people, as well as in all pastoral activities, commitment and presence are very important. Everything consumes me, sometimes gives satisfaction, and sometimes causes frustration. However, the awareness of the GIFT always makes me go further. At present, for the past three years I have been working in a primary school in Okuniew near Warsaw – starting this year, for 25 hours a week which includes catechesis from the 3rd to the 8th grades and direction of classes in the kindergarten. In addition, I prepare children for First Communion and young people for Confirmation. These preparations take place in a parish where only one sick priest is ministering, which is why any parish service requires constant care, building relationships with families and maintaining good relations with the school. Despite all the threats of the modern times, the opportunity to work in the school becomes a mission. It is here that, every day, I come across the “living subject matter” that one must face and love.

In my daily adoration, I discover what can happen in me during these few moments spent before the Blessed Sacrament. How many good inspirations, ideas, healed relationships, good encounters are born there in silence.

In today’s world where faith is considered one of the many ideas, and generosity, service or dedication (it seems) have lost their value – the commitment to imitate Christ takes on a special significance. Every day I discover that HIS PRESENCE is in me, and I feel that I am truly sent.


Beata Karwowska, fmm