Monday, January 9, 2012

Boys Celebrate New Year with Chivalry Program

From far and near, boys gathered to celebrate the New Year and learn about chivalry. The five-day program included interesting talks, lively games and cordial conviviality, culminating with the festive arrival of the New Year with prayers, medieval games and a splendid banquet.

From December 28 to January 2, participants learned about the heroes of the 1st Crusade, Saint John Bosco and his dreams of Hell, as well as the importance of Confession. They discovered the virtues of King Saint Louis IX and watched video footage of TFP street campaigns with keen interest.

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A steep climb up Peter’s Mountain in cold conditions was rewarded with a cup of hot chocolate made on the summit, while snow flurries enhanced the beautiful view of the Susquehanna River below.

The boys went to Washington D.C. where they toured the Basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception and the Franciscan Monastery of the Holy Land. The latter houses a replica of the Holy Sepulchre of Our Lord, a copy of the catacombs and the manger of Bethlehem where Our Lord was born.

Winter Camp
HIRH Prince Bertrand of Orleans-Braganza
presents the memento to one of the young
The trip was completed with dinner: brick oven pizza at the TFP Headquarters in Spring Grove, Penn. Some 40 pizzas were served (about 320 slices).

Shield-ball, tug of war, dodge ball, a challenging obstacle course and prison break, a game with flashlights in the darkness of night, were played with great vigor.

And spiritual activities included the daily recitation of the Holy Rosary and frequent Mass attendance.

As the bell signaled the arrival of the New Year, camp members sang the Creed and recited St. Louis de Montfort’s Consecration to Mary, thus making the first act of the year a prayer to God through His Most Holy Mother. After prayer, a snack awaited. Fine cheese, preserves, mouth-watering pears, hot cider and delicious chocolate accompanied with Christmas carols and good conversation made the day special.

High Mass on New Year’s Day was followed by a sumptuous banquet. During dinner Godfrey of Bouillon entered the hall. Because of his great virtue of purity, he possessed extraordinary strength, which he demonstrated by cutting off the head of a camel in one blow. But the camel was not real. It was only a skit.

A memento was presented to each camp participant by HIRH Prince Bertrand of Orleans-Branganza, a descendent of Saint Louis IX. The memento was a framed picture of Godfrey de Bouillon at the Siege of Jerusalem, inscribed with a quote from the founder of the TFP, Prof. Plinio Correa de Oliviera: “Of the several types of courage a man needs, one of the greatest or THE greatest, is the courage to decide to be pure.”

Winter Camp
The sultan (center) is amazed by the strenght of Godfrey of Bouillon
(right) who severed the neck of a camel with one blow.
Reinvigorated for the spiritual combat of 2012, the participants headed homewards. They had found new friends at Saint Louis de Montfort Academy, made spiritual steps forward and were filled with expectation and excitement for the upcoming Chivalry camps.

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