The Mission Festival presented

From 29 September to 2 October a world that is told through the languages ​​of celebration and encounter. At the Colonne di San Lorenzo and other places 29 events in the main program, with the main theme “Living as a gift” and over 100 Italian and international guests

From left: Adriano Karipuna, Kindi Taila, Lucia Lucia Capuzzi and father Sebastiano D’Ambra (Fotogramma Agency)

From 29 September to 2 October, the Festival of the Mission brings the missionary commitment of the Italian Church to the square in Milan, in particular to the Columns of San Lorenzo, and welcomes the testimonies of many men and women committed to taking care of a wounded world.

Now in its second edition after the one in Brescia in 2017, the Festival, promoted by Cimi (Conference of Missionary Institutes in Italy) and Missio Foundation (pastoral body of the Italian Episcopal Conference) in collaboration with the Archdiocese of Milan, was presented this morning in the Chapel of Sant’Aquilino, in the Basilica of San Lorenzo.

After the greetings of the two promoters, represented by Father Fabio Motta (Cimi representative in the Governing Council of the Mission Festival, PIME missionary) and Don Giuseppe Pizzoli (director of the National Office for Missionary Cooperation between Churches and of the Missio Foundation) , the operational director, Father Piero Masolo (PIME missionary and collaborator of the Office for missionary pastoral care of the Diocese of Milan), the artistic director Lucia Capuzzi (journalist of Future) and Monsignor Luca Bressan (Episcopal Vicar of the Diocese of Milan for Culture, Charity, Mission and Social Action).

Three of the numerous guests of the Festival days then gave their testimony on some of the main themes of the event: Father Sebastiano D’Ambra, PIME missionary known for his commitment to interreligious dialogue between Christians and Muslims in the Philippines; Kindi Taila, who as a child fled the war in the Democratic Republic of Congo thanks to the help of some Italian missionaries, graduated in Medicine in our country and then returned several times to Africa for missionary experiences; Adriano Karipuna, a symbol of the resistance of the indigenous peoples of the Amazon against deforestation.

Finally, Massimo Minelli, president of Confcooperative Lombardia, who together with the Lombard Federation BCC and Fondosviluppo is the main partner of the Festival, and the representatives of the two main supporting realities: Claudia Sorlini, vice president of Fondazione Cariplo, and Agnese Nascosto, Project coordination and operational structure of Associazione Cuore Amico.

The program and the guests

More than 100 guests, Italian and international, who will participate in the 29 events of the main program with the title “Vivere per dono” and in the rich calendar of the “Festival è also”; over 150 missionary witnesses who will animate aperitifs in the bars and bistros of the center; 200 volunteers to help manage the over 30,000 people expected; over 20 religious structures and parishes to welcome the 1,500 people who have already reported a request for hospitality from all over Italy.

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There location chosen as the pole of the event are the Columns of San Lorenzo, a historic and characteristic place of the city, which has always been a meeting place for the Milanese nightlife and for the youngest. But meetings are also planned in other significant places, such as the San Vittore Prison and the Catholic University of the Sacred Heart, as well as Sunday Mass in the Duomo, with the choirs of young people from different realities of the diocese of Milan. The red thread of the mission will also connect the Basilica of Sant’Eustorgio itself, where the missionaries will take care of moments of spirituality, with the Basilica of Santo Stefano, where the Missio Milano exhibition will be set up for the days of the Festival; Palazzo Lombardia, for an exhibition and theatrical performances, with the conference room of the Diocesan Museum, which will host book presentations and a meeting on ethical fashion, and the Church of San Giorgio, with workshops on restorative justice and Agenda 2030.

And piazza Vetra (behind the Basilica of San Lorenzo) will host the two events in which the largest presence is expected: Saturday 1 October, at 9.30 pm, “Get up and #ViviPerDono”, to look forward to the World Youth Day in Lisbon, in 2023: an evening that will alternate darkness and light, silence and music, in the presence of Archbishop Mario Delpini. Sunday 2 October, at 5 pm, the final act of the Festival, where peace will be the motif that will accompany the music and testimonies of the “Missio Contest – Peace Concert”, with the presence of the artists Liza Miller and Anna Tchikovskaya, respectively Russian and ukraine.

On the opening day of the Festival, Thursday 29 September, Diego Cugia, alias Jack Folla, in connection with the Egyptian activist Patrick Zaki, will accompany on a journey between prison and ransom, at “Ora aria” (7 pm). On the same evening, the journalist and writer Mario Calabresi and Don Luigi Ciotti, who made the road his parish, fighting the mafias and inequalities, will talk in the meeting “Mission Frontier: memory and justice” (9.30 pm).

On Friday 30 September, the President of the CEI, Cardinal Matteo Zuppi, will also be present at the conference “Making life bloom – The Magdalene mission” (11 am), on the announcement of the Good News in a wounded world, while during the conference ” Justice and con-dono ”(6 pm), the Minister of Justice Marta Cartabia will discuss, with the criminologist Adolfo Ceretti and the chaplain of the women’s prison in Santiago de Chile Nelly León, the theme of the paths of restorative justice.

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Economists from different schools will discuss the ways to a more equitable and supportive world on Saturday 1 October, during the conference «Beyond the economy that kills». The words of Sr. Alessandra Smerilli, secretary of the Dicastery for Service to Integral Human Development, of life senator Mario Monti and of the indigenous activist against deforestation in the Amazon, Adriano Karipuna, will be significant.

Among the guests protagonists at the various conferences and meetings, called to decline the meaning of the title “Living by gift”, in its double meaning of gratuitousness and forgiveness, we point out Father Christian Carlassare, Comboni missionary and bishop of Rumbek, in South Sudan, where he is survived an attack; the Camillian religious, Father Bernard Kinvi, who in Central Africa shocked by violence managed to protect up to 1,500 Muslims; Father Pier Luigi Maccalli, SMA missionary, and Sister Gloria Cecilia Narvaez, Franciscan of Mary Immaculate, united by the experience of a long kidnapping in Africa; Zakia Seddiki, who continues, with the Mama Sofia association, the mission of her husband Luca Attanasio, the Italian ambassador killed in Congo.

The proposals of the main program are flanked by those of the “Festival è Also”: 4 affiliated museums, 27 bars and bistros for “missionary aperitifs”, meetings with the authors and presentation of 14 books, 5 film screenings, 11 churches open for itineraries arts and guided tours, 4 shows, various workshops for children, teenagers, young people and adults and five-a-side football tournaments.

The Mission Festival has the patronage of the Municipality of Milan and the collaboration of the Lombardy Region. Travel partner: Trenord


Read also:

The Archbishop’s message

The declarations of the promoters

The statements of the supporters

The exhibition: «Missio Milano»

The documentary: “All Brothers”

The sign: “Seeds of mission”

Go to the special

The Mission Festival presented