Spiritual Renewal and Community Building: USA-CANADA Province Annual Retreat and Assembly

Jun 6, 2024 | USA - Canada

Mundelein, Chicago: The USA-CANADA Province’s annual retreat and Assembly, held from May 27 to June 1, 2024 in Mundelein, Chicago, was a remarkable and spiritually enriching event. This hybrid gathering commenced with the Mass of the Holy Spirit, presided by Fr. Henry Omonisaye, CMF. His inspiring homily challenged the province to become instruments of the Holy Spirit and boldly proclaim the Good News.

The event began with the Enthronement of the Scriptures and a reflection on the 175th Jubilee Year—a time for holiness, liberation, and celebrating divine providence. The retreat’s themes of missionary rootedness, audacity, perseverance, creativity, and openness to the Spirit underscored the readiness to learn from the past and embrace the future with renewed commitment.

The first day discussions centered on building holistic missionary communities that appreciate diversity, gifts, and talents, fostering unity and a shared mission. The emphasis was on working together for the sake of the Gospel, reinforcing or collective pursuit.

On the second day, Provincial, Fr. Paul Keller, CMF, led dynamic sessions on what makes a great community life. He emphasized that community is the first act of mission. The day was filled with interactive reflections on community prayer, projects, meetings, days of reflection, communication, fraternal correction, and dialogue. The day included a lively session of sharing stories and skits about our everyday community experiences, vividly highlighting the joys and challenges of communal living.

Day Three saw Fr. Mark Francis, CMF guiding the Assembly in reflections on evangelizing liturgy. He challenged to pay closer attention to how one celebrate liturgies and convey the Gospel message in an engaging and relevant manner to those one serve. These sessions underscored the importance of meaningful and contextually resonant liturgical celebrations.

The final day was dedicated to the province’s administrative matters. Presentations covered the province’s state, financial reports, vocation and formation ministry updates, and apostolate activities. This comprehensive overview clarified ongoing changes, restructuring efforts, new communities, and missions. A Q&A session allowed participants to engage directly with leadership on these critical topics.

The USA-CANADA Province retreat and Assembly was a time of deep reflection, renewal, and community building. It strongly reaffirmed the unwavering commitment to the missionary call. The event equipped the province’s members with the spiritual and practical tools needed to move forward with faith and enthusiasm.

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