The Servants of Charity, the Community of Manila spent one day Seminar on the Venerable Bishop Aurelio Bacciarini and his service in the early days of the Congregation and the Diocese of Lugano. We invited the Sisters of DSMP, the Guanellian Cooperators and the whole guanellian family was there to participate the seminar. We started at 9 am with the prayer recited by the theologians. There was a short film about the life and service of Bacciarini and it was the played in English.
Then Fr. Rajesh gave his conference on 'Aurelio Bacciarini as the successor of Fr. Guanella for the Servants of Charity'. Fr. Aurelio guided the Institute for nine years from 1915, after the death of Fr. Guanella until the fourth General Chapter of the Servants of Charity in 1924. The Congregation was entrusted to him in the difficult socio-political times of the World War I (1915-1918). Bacciarini loved Fr. Guanella from the time he received his religious vocation. He wanted to guide the confreres in the imitation of Fr. Guanella even after his death.
Bacciarini made many initiatives in the Congregation; among them these three were his urgent and prior works: Consolidating the formation of the Servants of Charity, the life and functioning of the religious houses and pontifical approval of the Congregation.
According to Bacciarini, Authentic religious life consists in the observance of the rules and regulations. The Constitutions guarantees the fidelity to the journey of personal sanctification in the religious community. In one of his letters written in 1924, regarding the guanellian program of Pregare e patire, he wrote, “É pregare! The spirit of prayer is above all the first condition for the stability and the progress of the works of Fr. Guanella, because the extraordinary works demand a special intervention from God and without prayer you cannot exercise these. It is the Providence, who acts our extraordinary works." In the years of 1921-1924, Fr. Aurelio Bacciarini underwent the period of pain and suffering out of his health and his double responsibility as the Superior General and Bishop of Lugano.
After the moment of break and the songs from the part of brothers and sisters, Fr. Battista gave his reflection on Bacciarini as Bishop of Lugano. Lugano, in spite of its elegance and natural beauty, was affected by many human miseries of poverty. Bacciarini was contemporarily the Bishop and Superior General for the six years and other years remained as a Bishop of Lugano. He was consecrated as Bishop in Basilica of Trionfale, Rome on 21 January, 1917.
He gave constant vigilance through his presence in the diocese of Lugano which consisted more than 240 parishes. He organized many pilgrimages through which strengthened the faith of the people.
After the Lunch, Brothers and sisters gathered again for some discussions on what they listened to Venerable Aurelio. The questions made them to reflection that how the seminarians, lay persons are inspired and what example, they may bring home from the life and spirit of Bacciarini and what would be the guanellian pastoral approach to be followed in our countries?
The lay Cooperators also participated very enthusiastically in the discussions. Fr. Battista and Fr. Rajesh helped us to clarify their doubts the historical and charismatic part of the life of Bacciarini.
We thank the Providence for the day and we thank Fr. Aurelio through whom God poured abundant graces to the Congregation. Finally we recited the newly formulated prayer for the beatification of Venerable Aurelio Bacciarini.