Madrid, Spain. From the 10th -12th of December in Madrid, the III Symposium organised by ITVR (Theological Institute of Religious Life) was held dealing with the above topic.
With over 200 participants, the majority of them religious brothers from different Orders and Congregations, the symposium put forward as its objective a collaborative consideration about the mission, identity, spirituality and ecclesial place of the male consecrated life of Brothers.
The Symposium’s agenda touched on the following aspects of this special way of life within the Church:
1. CALLED TOGETHER, with the presentation “Reflection from the CIVCSVA on religious brothers”, given by Fr Eusebio Hernández OAR, sub-secretary of the same Congregation and a panel chaired by Fr José Cristo Rey García Paredes CMF, director of ITVR, with the title “Accounts of brotherhood: Brothers according to different charisms” in which five religious have shared their daily experiences of how they live their vocation as a brother.
2. SENT, with the presentation “Being Sent: a special way of spreading the mission – challenges, creative responses”, given by Bro. Emili Turú Rofes, Superior General of the Marist Brothers.
3. UNITED, with the presentation “Brotherhood: a special form of communion and community” given by Bro. Donatus Forkan, Superior General of the Order of St John of God.
4. CONSECRATED, with the presentation “The anointing: when “the sacred” envelopes a life in Alliance” given by Bro. Álvaro Rodríguez Echevarría, Superior General of the de la Salle Brothers.
All the presentations and the panel were followed by a forum in which the presenters engendered a most interesting dialogue with those in attendance.
Present amongst the participants was Bro. Paulo Petry, a de la Salle religious and President of CLAR.
On the last day, conclusions were drawn grouped under the title “Reporting that brotherhood/sisterhood is possible”.
Finally, the meeting benefited from the presence of Mons. Joseph W. Tobin, Redemptorist and current Secretary of CIVCSVA, who presented some final thoughts and led the closing Eucharistic service.