A 23-member representation of the Betania Choir, accompanied by their relatives, went on a tour in the United States from November 22 to December 4, 2017. They went to Massachusetts (Betania II’s headquarters) and New Jersey (Betania III, X and XI’s headquarters), thanks to its representatives and collaborators. For this, Maria Auxiliadora Bianchini Leon, as the choir’s leader, wrote and staged a musical play called “Christmas Memories 2017”, on how the Bianchini-Medrano family lived their Christmases with their parents and the teachings these experiences left them.
They arrived at Boston on Wednesday, November 22nd, only minutes before the first concert that took place in the home for nuns and the elderly Bethany Health Care, where Sister Margaret Sims (founder of Betania II) is at. Mrs. Rose Patek also organized a dinner at the Restaurant 45 to recall the birthday of the Servant of God Maria Esperanza for relatives and friends.
Thursday, November 23 was Thanksgiving in the United States. On this day the meeting of European pilgrims and native Indians is celebrated. It occurred that they re-lived that moment in Betania II with the presence of European descendants and the ex-representative of the North American Tribes, Chief Roderick Alexis, accompanied by his wife Doreen. The celebration included Mass officiated by Father Joseph Mattevcig, lunch in Betania II and the premier of “Christmas Memories 2017”.
On November 25, the Betania Choir participated in the celebration of the Mass and the presentation of their play in the St. Mary’s Church in Waltham, MA. Father Alejandro Lopez Cardinale addressed warm and kind words to them.
The choir accompanied the parishioners with their music during the noon Mass at the Most Holy Redeemer Parish in Boston, on Sunday, 26th. It also toured the city by car and in the evening it took part in the Betania II monthly meeting.
On Monday, November 27 the Betania Choir had a double participation to say goodbye to Massachusetts with their friend and the spiritual director of Betania II, Father Richard Clancy. First, they went to St. Louis Catholic School, in Lowell, where after Mass they had a nice lunch. Then, in St. Rita Church there was adoration of the Blessed Sacrament and they presented their musical play.
Continuing with the tour, on Tuesday, November 28, they traveled in a caravan of 7 vanes, passing by New York City where they visited Mother Cabrini Church, St. Ignatius of Loyola Church and St. Patrick Cathedral, to arrive at night at Williamstown, New Jersey where they were welcomed at the doorway of Betania X’s headquarters by a great representation of the community led by their friend and the spiritual director, Father Cadmus Mazzarella. All were waiting for them for dinner. On Wednesday the Betania Choir was taken in peregrination to the sanctuaries dedicated to St. John Neumann and St. Rita of Cascia in Philadelphia, PA.
On November 30, at 1:30 p.m. they had their Christmas concert in Our Lady of Peace Church for the 6th and 8th graders of St. Mary’s School. At 3:00 p.m., a group went to share the message of Our Lady Mary Reconciler to Paul VI Catholic School, at 5:30 they shared with the parish’s young adults and at 7:00 p.m. they went to Betania X’s weekly meeting in the gymnasium.
Long Beach Island, in New Jersey, was the destination of Friday, December 1st, where they visited the house in which our Servant of God Maria Esperanza left this world. After a delicious dinner organized by MSGR. Ken Tuzeneu, Bob Dodds and collaborators in St. Mary of the Pines Parish, in Manahawkin, the choir offered their concert of evangelization. On Saturday there was adoration to the Blessed Sacrament in Our Lady of Peace at 7:00 p.m.
On Sunday, the Sweeneys offered their home for a great lunch for the Venezuelan guests and the organizers. At 6:00 p.m. they all went to Mass, followed by the concert of the Betania Choir in Our Lady of Peace Church.
The last presentation in the USA was at St. Peter Church in Merchantville, the parish of their friend, spiritual director and the vicepostulador of the cause of the Servant of God Maria Esperanza, Father Timothy Byerley, on December 4. There they had an exquisite dinner, and received many words of congratulations and gratefulness. Members of the choir and spectators were grateful to Heaven for this mission of love and reconciliation, in which, while sharing in harmony and spirituality, it rendered homage to the Child Jesus, as did the Servant of God Maria Esperanza and the Patriarch Geo, and also honored the message of brotherly unity of Our Lady Reconciler of Peoples.