CARDI's 18th Anniversary. Mexico City. April 2024.

On March 16, the Augustinian Recollect Family celebrated the 18th anniversary of its social-health project in Mexico City. Local Church authorities, volunteers, benefactors, beneficiaries, facilitators, therapists, and collaborators participated in this anniversary celebration.

Around noon on Saturday, March 16, the Eucharist of thanksgiving for the 18 years of the founding of CARDI began, presided by the Augustinian Recollect Bishop Francisco Javier Acero, auxiliary of the Archdiocese of Mexico and who for a long time was directly involved in this project.

The Vicar for Mexico and Costa Rica of the Province of St. Nicholas of Tolentine of the Augustinian Recollects, Martin Luengo, and the present director of CARDI, the Augustinian Recollect, Refugio Gonzalez, acted as hosts for this event to honor these 18 years of solidarity, companionship and service to the sick and their families who come from all parts of the country of Mexico for specialized health care in the government hospitals in Mexico City.

Up to eight Augustinian Recollect priests and two other diocesan priests were present in the celebration, and the bishop defined the moment as a “dream fulfilled.” He recalled that it is a project to which many have contributed time, resources, encouragement, professionalism, and much solidarity.

Lupita Galindo, a volunteer since the beginning of CARDI, shared her testimony, recalling anecdotes and moments that marked her life and encouraged her in her commitment to the beneficiaries because when a volunteer approaches someone in need, those in need will change the volunteer for the better.

Some beneficiaries shared how this Augustinian Recollect social project, CARDI, has become their home away from home for them.

Many beneficiaries have seen their relatives recover their health thanks to the services CARDI offers. Those who lost a loved one found spiritual and human support in those moments of great sadness. In any case, there is a struggle with hope and excellent support from the professionals at CARDI.

Far from their home towns and villages, CARDI is a space where they can recover strength, find rest, wash up, be listened to, discover other horizons in their situations of great anxiety and doubt, a space for close human encounters where it may seem not to be any in the big city.

A fraternal meal and live music by the Azteca de Oro musical group completed the 18th Anniversary celebration. The Augustinian Recollect charism has become part of many people’s daily lives in CARDI and many other Recollect Order Family social projects promoting God’s children’s dignity, life, and hope.