On Saturday, November 20, the traditional Rose Meeting Festival was held in Pallerols de Rialb, organized by the Friends of the Camí de Pallerols de Rialb to Andorra Association.
The day began at 11:30 with the screening of the documentary about the adventure of St. Josemaría on his escape to Andorra, due to religious persecution during the Spanish Civil War of 1936 -39. The video highlights the difficulties and sufferings that the members of the group in which St. Josemaría went and especially describes the anguish that the saint experienced on the night of November 21 to 22, 1937 in front of the doubt whether or not he was doing God's will by continuing his journey to Andorra. The rose he found in the church, on the morning of the 22nd, filled him with peace and confirmed him in his decision to continue on to Andorra, surely he was doing the will of God.
After the video, there was a guided tour of the rectory and the church, and then -at 12:30- there was a procession around the church with the image of the Virgin Mary singing the Joys of the Roser of Pallerols.
Once inside the church, the Mass presided over by Fr. Rafael Fernandez, priest of Opus Dei, and concelebrated with other 4 priests: Fr. Constantine and Fr. Gabriel from the Faculty of Theology of the University of Navarra, in Pamplona, together with the two beloved priests of Ponts: Fr. Bonifaci Fortuny, in charge of the church of Pallerols de Rialb, and Fr. Pere Morales, rector of Ponts.
In the homily Fr. Rafael glossed over the experience of Saint Josemaría in Pallerols which often also coincides with our spiritual experience, where there are moments when we see clearly the path we must follow but at other times we have serious doubts and even anxieties to know what is the will of God. In any case, we must go to the help of God and Saint Mary, as Saint Josemaría does in Pallerols, and we will find the consolation and caresses of the Virgin. It also reminds us that tomorrow Sunday we celebrate the solemnity of Christ the King, who pushes us to seek Christ to reign in us and in our surroundings.
The mass was offered for the deceased of this year 2021 who were more related to Pallerols: Pere Verdera, Mn. Enric Moliné, Mn. Ferran Blasi, Pau Mitjans, Pere Ramoneda, Helga Langmaak, Jordi Cervós and Ricard Estarriol.
At the end of the Eucharist we all went to the cemetery, where Fr. Boniface led a prayer for the dead of Pallerols and asked for the protection of Mary in our lives. The party ended with the singing of the "April Rose".
Some of the attendees had lunch around Pallerols and others went to the nearby villages and farmhouses.
At 4 in the afternoon, there was the prayer of the Rosary and then the veneration of the relics of St. Josemaría.
As every year, it was an endearing party with the attendance of about 100 people: the majority came from Lleida and Barcelona, some came specifically from Madrid, others from Valencia, Pamplona, some from the Barony of Rialb, as well as de Pallars region, Vall de Cabó, and other places in Alt Urgell.
The day accompanied with its bonanza and we could happily relive those days of November 1937 when Saint Josemaría passed through these parts of the Catalan pre-Pyrenees.