Miguel Ángel Hernández, accompanied by the general councilor in charge of Misiones, Ismael Xuruc, has passed through Lábrea and Pauiní, where he has shared life and mission with the missionaries and has left a message of encouragement and hope.

On May 27, the prior general of the Order of Augustinian Recollects, Miguel Ángel Hernández, arrived in Lábrea accompanied by the general counselor in charge of the Missions in said religious Order, Ismael Xuruc.

In the Prelature of Lábrea (Amazonas, Brazil), the Augustinian Recollects have three communities located in the municipalities of Tapauá, Pauiní and Lábrea. Besides, There is another community in Manaus, the capital of the Brazilian state of Amazonas, which belongs to this ecclesiastical region of the Medio Purús that encompasses the Prelature of Lábrea, an entity that next year will celebrate a century of existence.

The prior general arrived through the Trans-Amazonian highway fromHumaitá and Porto Velho, the capital of Rondônia. On the journey that he had started in Rio de Janeiro, he was accompanied by bishops Santiago Sánchez and Jesús Moraza, Augustinian Recollects, who returned to Lábrea after having participated in the Meeting of the Augustinian Recollect bishops to whom the prior general himself had summoned them.

Santiago Sánchez is the current bishop of the Prelature of Lábrea, while Jesús Moraza exercised this ecclesial service between 1994 and 2016. Since that year, he has remained in the Prelature as bishop emeritus and currently serves in one of the parishes in the rural area between Canutama and Tapauá.

On his first day, the prior general celebrated the Eucharist in the temple of the Our Lady of Fátima base community, where the remains of the Augustinian Recollect missionary Cleusa Carolina Rodhy Coelho, martyr of the indigenous cause.

Cleusa personifies total dedication to the service of the most vulnerable despite the constant risks and challenges in which the Amazonian population lives. Hence, this was a very significant moment: opening the visit here meant remembering the commitment of the entire Augustinian Recoleta Family in one of the areas with the most difficulties for the evangelizing task of which this Family serves.

On the second day of the visit, he visited the Hope Center in Lábrea, a socio-educational project in which children and adolescents from vulnerable families receive workshop training, nutritional reinforcement, healthy leisure, and training in social and community.

The prior general had lunch with the Augustinian Recollect Missionaries and visited the Saint Rita High School, which these nuns manage. On the third day, he met with the prior of the local Recollect community and the parish priest of the Parish of Our Lady of Nazareth of Lábrea, the Augustinian Recollect Luis Amílcar Reyes, and with the director of the Esperanza Center, also a Recollect Sergio Perez. They analyzed the state of the mission and shared their pastoral experiences. In the afternoon, the prior general visited the Terra Solidária neighborhood, which was comprised of more than one hundred houses built with foreign aid resources and delivered in usufruct to vulnerable families who were in a situation of substandard housing. Each house usually has the name of the institution, family, or benefactors who donated the resources for its construction, and the prior general wanted to be photographed, especially next to one financed by the Junta de Andalucía.

Within the Terra Solidária neighborhood is the chapel of the Santa Rita base community, where the prior general and bishop Santiago Sánchez celebrated an Amazonian Eucharist in memory of the martyrdom of Sister Cleusa, as is done every 28th day of the month in the city of Lábrea, since she was murdered on April 28, 1985.

During the fifth day, the prior general visited the vulnerable areas of the urban area of Lábrea and the local market, and he observed the people already preparing the showy-colored carpets in the streets for the Corpus Christi festival.

It is a tradition full of faith and creativity that runs throughout Brazil in this festivity. Each Christian community’s different pastoral care and services, groups, and movements decorate the ground where the Blessed Sacrament will pass with artistic motifs.

These sand and chalk carpets this year featured themes such as the 100th anniversary of the Prelature of Lábrea, the 30th anniversary of the Hope Center, and the Jubilee Year 2025 for the Universal Church.

The prior general concelebrated in the main Eucharist of the Corpus Christi celebration and he participated in the procession with both bishops and the rest of the Recollect religious and priests of the Prelature present in Lábrea.

He still had time to get to know an extractive cooperative before moving to Rio Branco, the capital of the state of Acre, up the Purús River, to accompany the Augustinian Recollect Joaquín Pertíñez on his 25th anniversary of episcopal ordination and serving to the People of God in Rio Branco, as this page has already reported.

From Rio Branco, the prior general headed to Pauiní, again in the Amazon, another Recollect community within the Prelature of Lábrea. There, from June 2 to 4, he lived and met with the religious of this community, visited the local Hope Center, planted a tree at the Frei Loreto Ecological Site, and shared dialogue and prayer with the different base communities.

The prior general has encouraged the Augustinian Recollect religious to visit missionaries in the Amazon to continue dreaming together, maintain hope, and assume evangelization challenges with responsibility and determination. He has also requested that you find a way to reach more people and spread the joy of being followers of Jesus and living in fraternity according to the charism of Augustinian Recollect.