Colmenar Viejo, Spain. From Friday 28th February to Sunday 1st March 2020, the traditional meeting of students from Europe was held in the Intercultural Formation Community of Colmenar Viejo. There, 27 students and 8 formators from three formation centers in Europe and from other communities met. For the first time, the formandi of the Province of Deutschland participated. The students from Polska did not attend the meeting because they were celebrating their annual spiritual exercises on that date. The participants point out that it would be very important for them to be able to participate in these meetings on a regular basis.
The multicultural nature of the meeting promoted the official language to be English for the first time. Not only were four of the five European Provinces present but all other Organisms from other continents as well due to the fact that there are students from 15 different nationalities walking together in the same spirit.
They thanked Fr. Fermin Rodriguez, CMF for his efforts which made possible the simultaneous translation during the Saturday presentations and that of Luis Maria Garcia SJ, who spoke to them about the process of maturing of affectivity, as well as the risks and the difficulties most common in religious life.
On Sunday, Fr. Pedro Belderráin, CMF, Provincial of Santiago, presented the Vademecum of the Congregation for the Protection of Minors and Vulnerable Adults, which each Organism will have to adapt to its concrete reality. Fr. Pedro presided at the Eucharist that closed this meeting of ECLA missionaries in formation.
Since the topic addressed is important and necessary, the brevity of time meant that it could hardly be introduced. This allowed the participants to glimpse what is truly important in these annual meetings: the grace of being able to meet, share and walk together in the footsteps of Jesus the young people who, without ceasing to be part of the present, are called to be the future of the Congregation in Europe. A grace that always knows little and leaves you wanting more.