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When culture and faith come together: Sister Milia and Her Experience in Guamo

The gift of welcoming

The community of Sant’Eugenio recently had an extraordinary experience thanks to the presence of Sister Milia, who arrived in Guamo on 9 September 2023 as part of a collaboration between our Parish and Spazio Spadoni.

The welcome given to Sister Milia was touching: a welcome that involved the entire village in a party at the Church of Guamo, with the warm participation of children, young people and families. An event that marked the beginning of a period of cultural exchange and deep human connection.

Embracing diversity

During her stay in the ‘Don Romano Gasperini’ parish house with a Syrian family, Sister Milia experienced a cultural exchange that taught the whole community the value of interculturality and mutual respect. It was extraordinary to see how a young Muslim woman, together with her family, established an authentic bond of friendship with a Christian Catholic nun.

At a time when differences often divide rather than unite, this experience taught us that diversity can be an added value. Our community had the opportunity to embrace the beauty of diversity, becoming a positive example of how different cultures can enrich rather than separate.

An experience rich in initiatives

During her stay, Sister Milia approached Italian thanks to the volunteers of ‘Lucca Accoglie’, dedicating many hours to studying the language. Her project with Spazio Spadoni, called “HIC SUM”, aims to create a henhouse in Tanzania to sustain her convent and to support charitable projects in her home country.

Sister Milia worked actively in local poultry houses, learning the techniques of poultry farm management and operation. In addition to this, she participated in catechism for the community’s youngest children, contributed to the spiritual formation of the young people and took part in various activities with the group of ‘I brizzolati’, the community elders.

Not only a project-related experience, Sister Milia immersed herself completely in community life. She participated in religious festivities, processions and shared moments of prayer and spiritual growth with the family pastoral team.

Her presence had a tangible impact in the community, collaborating with the Misericordia of Massa Macinaia and San Giusto, and the Fratres Blood Donors of Guamo, Badia, Coselli and Vorno. Sister Milia has provided various public services, demonstrating how faith and social commitment can go hand in hand.

More than a community, a family

We cannot forget the people involved in this extraordinary experience. The support of the Diocesan Mission Office of Lucca and the Bishop was fundamental. Fr Emanuele followed the entire journey closely, while the Dorothean Sisters of Vorno and the Missionary Sisters of St Leonard offered spiritual support at crucial moments.

A key role was played by the Sisters of Santa Gemma of Camigliano, in particular thanks to Sister Gloriose, who trained Sister Milia in the works of mercy, enhancing the ideals conveyed by Spazio Spadoni.

Sister Milia’s experience ended in early January with touching farewells during a dedicated Mass, meetings with various pastoral groups and the pastoral council, and a warm dinner with all the villagers.

This experience, full of concrete details and tangible involvement, deeply marked our community, offering a shining example of how diversity can be a precious value to cherish in one’s heart. It was a beautiful journey, an opportunity to open our eyes to the beauty of meeting others in a spirit of mercy. May the memory of Sister Milia continue to inspire us in building a more united and loving community.

Claudia Berti


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