This article of Rev Thierry de Roucy was published in “D’un Point-Coeur à l’autre” #38, the French magazine of Heart’s home in September 2002.
When I founded Heart’s Home twelve years ago, I was aware that suffering was a widespread reality. I was also aware that it affects each person in a very different way, that it can take diverse forms. Twelve years later, I get the feeling that suffering is more and more present, appearing suddenly and frighteningly. I realize that none of us, none of our lives will escape the Cross, and I often see humanity in the shape of a big crucified body.
To face this omnipresence of suffering, there is a pressing need for more and more compassionate hearts. So many children and elderly, rich and poor, sick and rejected need to be comforted, supported and loved! We can’t stop dreaming that compassion can be at work everywhere, where people suffer, have pain, in every place where the Cross stands. We can’t stop dreaming, and, above all, praying for compassion to fill every heart.
We are often requested to settle new Heart’s Homes. If we could find enough missionaries, if we were able to train and guide them correctly, a new community could be founded every month, but we would still be unable to answer all the needs. This may not be the core of our mission any more, even if we always see the foundation of a Heart’s Home as a blessing of God. The main thrust now is that our charism may spread here and there, that it may gain ground, and that many people may long for living it, where they live, work or rest. That is to say that the feelings of the Virgin Mary standing at the foot of the Cross may fill each of our hearts.
In this context, I was so comforted during my latest stay in Manila to notice the growth of the Fraternity of Maximilian Kolbe, thanks to Father Vincent Lelievre. This fraternity was founded in 1997 in France, to enable the former missionaries to keep on living the charism of Heart’s Home in their daily lives, and to help all our friends―who will never be able to actually join one of our communities―to be instruments of the Virgin Mary’s spirit of compassion. The members of the Fraternity spend time together, training or friendship weekends, a recollection and a week of holiday. They commit themselves for three years to live the spirit of Heart’s Home in their daily lives and their activities, to pray the rosary everyday, to give a hand to the Association or to have a regular time of apostolate, helping those suffering the most, to support financially the Association, and to attend a yearly three-day recollection, along with all other members.
In the Philippines, around 15 members are committed in the Fraternity. All of them have, in some way, been moved by the charism of Heart’s Home, and want to live it in their daily life. I spent a whole Sunday with this small team, whose joy and enthusiasm make me rejoice. I also visited some members in their homes, and I immediately recognized in their homes the spirit that I feel in all the Heart’s Home communities I visit. I mean, a real spirit of prayer, but also a great dedication and openness to the poor and the most suffering, a full consideration for everybody, a true confidence in divine Providence.
I hope that such homes and hearts could be present all over the world!