Celebration of the Feast of St. Anthony
The Minister General celebrated the feast of Saint Anthony in Afragola, a town near Naples, where the Neapolitan Province run a Shrine dedicated to this wonder-worker saint. Out of devotion to the Saint, Afragola is called the Padua of Southern Italy. The Minister arrived in Afragola at 6.00 A.M. He was accompanied by the Provincial Minister and Provincial Secretary. The OFM brothers of the local fraternity, the Mayor of the city, and a large group of Franciscan youth, and SFO brothers were already waiting for them near the Shrine.
In front of the Shrine, before starting the celebration of the Eucharist at 6.30 A.M., the Mayor handed to the Minister General the keys to the city. The Eucharistic celebration was attended by about 3000 people; but already, the day before, the Minister celebrated Mass before a large group of devotees of St. Anthony’s Shrine in Teano. After the celebration, he visited the Poor Clares of Pignataro Maiore.