|Brother David renews his vows with Father Andre|
|Congratulations Frere David|
|Father Andre offers his congratulations!|
|Brother Michael John offers his congratulations!|
God said: "Let there be a child in the Bruner family, in Williamsport, Pennsylvania; let his birthday be July 14; let him be a good child who will make the whole family happy. And so, it came to pass: in his image God created him, and his parents named him David. God saw that he was a good child. And it was evening, and it was morning: the first day.
Later, God said: "Let this child be called to the Society of Mary; let a nun call him, in the school where he is studying. And so, it came to pass: David heard that voice as inspired by God and entered the Marianist novitiate. And his superiors saw that he was good…and there were 366 evenings and 366 mornings and, on February 11, 1961, a great year, David made his first vows – the second day, blessed day!
And his superiors said, he who was born on the 14th of July, let us make him study the beautiful French language ... They saw that he was good, and David was professor of languages over 49 nine years, and he trained many students ... He was good, really good. And many rejoiced in his service as a teacher, as a Dean of Discipline or librarian, and more so as an outstanding member of the Chaminade and Kellenberg communities. Mike rejoiced as well: David was his teacher and master of discipline: this was very good ... and perhaps ... very necessary... thus, it was a new day...
And there were 21,912 (twenty-one thousand nine hundred and twelve) evenings and 21,912 mornings ... and we had already made it to February 8 in the year 2021, in Rome ... and all the brothers of Via Latina were gathered to celebrate David and his 60 years of religious life ... and God saw what he had done, and behold, it was very good. And once again, as for the previous 21,911 days, God sent all his blessings on David and his family, on Brother Bob Fachet - his companion in vows and jubilee - and their brothers in the Province of Meribah, and on the whole community of Rome…and it was a splendid evening, full of joy, fraternity and filled with the grace of God -- a 'formidable' evening, foreshadowing many more evenings and many more magnificent mornings to come...
And we see how much God has done and how much David has cooperated in God's action.
It's really a beautiful, beautiful story. It is the story of a life given with fidelity and constancy, day after day, without interruption. A life given with great attention to all the details of the service required and with great respect for others.
We thank God and we thank you David.
It was certainly a great gift for everyone: students, fellow brothers.
It is a great gift to have a colleague or confrere who is always well prepared for the mission.
It gives one a lot of peace and confidence; is an example of one that leaves its mark on hearts
Being a faithful and constant servant is a truly beautiful thing; it gives everyone joy and a lot of peace of mind.
The Genesis account, which I have taken up with some freedom, you may have noticed ...,
reminds us that our lives, and your life, David, are part of God's great plan.
In that project, God expresses his love and faithfulness. Not just in general, to the whole world, but most of all personally to each of us, when he calls us into existence and when he calls us to follow him in a special way, that is, to be a sign of his love.
We are called to be with Jesus, like the disciples we contemplated in the Gospel sharing his whole life, passionate for him, ready to "do whatever he tells us," always, in every place and in every circumstance, wherever circumstances and the call has placed us:
walking with him,
praying with him,
crossing the lake with him,
and especially welcoming those who come to him:
sick, poor, thirsting for truth or justice, those thirsting for God's encounter;
and many students, families, brothers…
Like Jesus, at any hour of the day, to welcome everyone, speak, listen, heal, console, encourage, help, ...
This is our life: to be passionate for Jesus,
to do every day what Jesus would want to do for those He sends to us.
and make it known to all; witness the life He has given us.
To be for them a sign of His presence and of His personal love.
And, as Jesus wanted it for us, Marianists, according to Blessed Chaminade,
we also want to do it for Mary, and with Mary, in alliance with her,
"To the end of our days, we are happy to spend our lives and our strength
in Mary’s service, since they belong to her, giving ourselves to build
the city of God here below." (RL 91)
We want to do this by living a "lifestyle similar to that of Jesus and Mary" (RL 16)
Poor, chaste and obedient
We want to do this by coming together as a community,
in the image of the Jerusalem community gathered with Mary.
Let us thank the Lord for having called us to such a beautiful life.
Let us thank the Lord for the vocation He has given to each of us.
We thank David for his faithfulness to the call during these 60 years.
Lord, continue to bless David and to bless us.
Virgin Mary, protect him and protect us: we are at your service. Amen