This year, due to the situation of the pandemic, it was not possible to celebrate the Eucharist as it was usually held in the chapel of the Eastern Cemetery, to honor the Servant of God Maria Esperanza Bianchini, messenger of Our Lady of Betania, on her 16th anniversary of her passing. Thanks to the good offices of the Parish Priest of Santa Rosalia de Palermo, of El Hatillo, Father Angel Rios, it was possible to celebrate Mass at the residence of the Bianchini family, transmitting it livestream via Zoom to all the Betania Communities established in the world. More than 223 families had the privilege of participating in this beautiful and heartfelt Mass officiated by Father Juan Carlos Silva, Parish Priest of Santa Rosalia de Caracas. Children and grandchildren of the Servant of God Maria Esperanza, who belong to the Betania Choir, accompanied this ceremony with their songs.
Before beginning Mass, Father Timothy Byerley, representative of the Communities of Betania III and XI in the USA, addressed a few words to all the participants of this transmission via Internet: “The Betania family is an international movement and today we are all united as the Servant of God Maria Esperanza would have liked us to be, so that the idea of reconciliation that the world so badly needs today is possible.” He also referred to the fundamental role that Our Lady of Betania plays, under the title of Reconciler of All Peoples in attaining this unity, “Her message is the same message of her Son: To love God and brothers, this is what unity means.” He also asserted that “despite the fact that the situation in the world looks quite negative, we are on the verge of an enormous victory for God, and that victory is love, the victory of divine love.”
Father Silva, during his homily, thanked Reverend Father Rios for the permission of allowing them to have this cult, and pointed out: “Within the framework of this celebration, the entire Betania Spirituality Movement, which extends throughout the world, has united through social networks for this Eucharist to glorify God for his mercy on us and for the work done in our Servant of God María Esperanza.” Likewise, he reflected on the universality of the catholicity of the foundation, spread throughout the world and gathered under a single pastor: “Today the Betania Spirituality Movement gives a lesson on what union means in the confession of a single faith, under the unity of our Holy Father Pope Francis.” Similarly, in relation to the Servant of God Maria Esperanza, Father Juan Carlos said: “Through her life, her love and her actions, and from so much consolation that she brought to many anguished souls she was able to exude the sweet smell of Christ.” Like Father Byerley, he expressed that reconciliation with Christ and among brothers is urgent, and that, “the Blessed Virgin in Betania opened a path that manifests the work of God that is unstoppable, because wherever the foundation is Christ and Mary are, and in Christ and Mary we recover from our great miseries, turning into instruments of hope and peace. Our Servant of God was an instrument and continues to be a privileged instrument of God’s love, who comes to reconcile her people and heal tremendous wounds”.
After Mass, the mini choir offered a small concert, and some members of the family and foundation shared their experiences with the Servant of God Maria Esperanza.