The Lay Marianist Community of Cotonou was built around Yvon AMOUSSOU, Edwige AMOUSSOU, Pélagie KOUSSO, Charmise KOUASSI, Bénédicte BAKI, Vicky AMOUSSOU and Marius MENSAH. It is a seed of lay Marianists totaling on average more than 10 years of experience at the heart of our beautiful and large Marianist family in Côte d’Ivoire and Togo.
The first meeting took place on Saturday September 22, 2012 at Pélagie KOUSSO from Côte d’Ivoire, temporarily residing in Cotonou .
First Meeting on September 22, 2012 at KOUSSO Pélagie’s
At the end of this meeting, Pélagie KOUSSO contacted Father Léo by internet who recommended us to make the pilgrimage on the World Day of Marianist Prayer during the year in progress to Our Lady of Mercy of TOGOVILLE in order to recommend the CLM creation project in Cotonou.
On Sunday October 14, 2012 we went to TOGOVILLE with the vehicle of Edwige AMOUSSOU although she could not travel. Throughout the pilgrimage we prayed the rosary and entrusted the New Fraternity and our lives to Our Lady of Mercy without knowing that the group was going to evolve and give birth to other Fraternities. On the pilgrimage site we recited the 3 o’clock prayer in union with all Marianists in the world and entrusted the future Fraternity to Our Lady of Mercy.
Pilgrimage in TOGOVILLE to Notre dame de Miséricorde
Pélagie, Yvon and Marius on October 14 2012
The day after the pilgrimage, we met Father DONATIEN AMEGE, the parish priest of the Cathedral of Our Lady of Mercy (same name as our pilgrimage site) who by the action of divine providence already knew the Marianists in Abidjan during a brief stay he had in Ivory Coast while he was a seminarian (the connection was therefore easy between the parish priest and us). Father DONATIEN AMEGE authorized us to start our activities in his parish. Thus on the advice of Father Léo Pauels SM in Abidjan and with the encouragement of Agathe SENOU (Alliance Mariale), we contacted some catechists of the Notre Dame de Miséricorde cathedral in Cotonou who later joined Marianist spirituality and certain catechumens were recruited. This was the beginning of the CLM in Cotonou. About twenty people (Teachers, Technician, workers, Students and Pupils …) have subscribed to our charism. Our approach in Cotonou was based on the advice of Father Léo Pauels that catechesis constitutes good land for Marianist spirituality.
Since then, we have carried out activities including:
- Study of the Manual Origin and Spirituality, of Father Léo Pauels (2012-2013)
- Faith Practice, by Father Léo Pauels (2013-2014)
- Saint Joseph at the crossroads of the New and the Old Testament, Father Léo Pauels (2014-2015).…
- We organized retreats and engaged in several activities in the parish. We actively participated in the activities of the diocese and we extended our activity there. We are in 2019 at four Fraternities who try to live according to the Marianist charism in harmony with the Society of Mary in the North of Benin, the CLM, SM, AM and FMI of neighboring Togo.