May 21, 2011
Poland, Lichen: International Conference of the AMH
Spiritual formation, sharing work experiences, and reviving contacts are three main goals of the Conference of the Association Marian Helpers (AMH), recently held at the Marian Shrine in Lichen Stary.
The Association representatives came to Lichen from all over the world: Brazil, Argentina, England, Latvia, Lithuania, United States, and, of course, Poland. From among the countries, where the AMH is active, only the Ukrainian representative was absent.
The Conference dealt with various problems that come up in the daily lives of the Association members. However, its primary goal was the spiritual and intellectual formation, the deepening of charism of the Congregation of Marian Fathers, which the Association representatives want to put into action through their activities. In addition, the conference in Lichen created an opportunity for sharing work experiences and meeting Association representatives from other countries with whom frequent contacts are limited due to great distances separating them.
The ranks of the Association of Marian Helpers are composed mainly of lay people since this body has been created particularly with those people in mind. But, members of the clergy are also present. The Association, which was founded primarily for the laity, is a group of friends of the Marian Fathers giving, above all, spiritual support. It is an exchange of spiritual benefits: “The Marian Fathers pray for their lay associates, while the lay people pray for the Marian priests and brothers,” said Brother Andrew Mączyński, MIC, the General Promoter of the AMH, who resides and works in the United States.
The main task of the Association of Marian Helpers’ members is to prayerfully support the Marian priests and brothers, to spread the glory of God and the Divine Mercy, and to actively participate in the apostolic mission of the Church. The Association regularly organizes meetings in the regions of its activity and publishes periodicals of formative and spiritual nature.
“The Association works on the modern concept of an organization of people who wish to live by the Marian charism and to bring it into their immediate environment,” added Brother Mączyński.
For the first time this year’s conference was combined with the meeting of leaders of the Confraternity of the Immaculate Conception that exists at the Congregation. Father Andrzej Pakuła, MIC, General Superior of the Congregation of Marian Fathers of the Immaculate Conception of the Most Blessed Virgin Mary was the guest of this year meeting.
The Association of Marian Helpers was founded in 1925. It has existed in Poland since 1994 and was established there through the initiative of the then Provincial Superior, Fr. Jan Rokosz, MIC.