Visit of the Superior General to the Claretians of the United Kingdom and Participation in the UK Regional Assembly in Hayes

Feb 20, 2024 | Fatima, UK - Ireland

Hayes, United Kingdom. Fr. Mathew Vattamattam, CMF, Superior General of the Claretian Missionaries, accompanied by Fr. Carlos Candeias CMF, Provincial Superior of Fatima Province, visited the Claretians in the United Kingdom from February 7-13, 2024. During their visit, they spent time in the communities of Buckden, Leyton, and Hayes, bringing renewed spirit and vision to the Claretian communities. Their encounters were enriching and their fraternal presence was greatly appreciated by everyone who had the pleasure of meeting them. They also attended the UK Regional Assembly, where they shared their insights and wisdom with the Claretians. 

Fr. Mathew Vattamattam, CMF, commenced his visits with personal talks and guided community meetings, instilling words of encouragement and appreciation. These gatherings were not merely administrative; they embodied the spirit of synodality, emphasizing communion, mission, and active participation in the transformative journey of the members.

A key moment unfolded on the 12th of February, as all three communities convened in Hayes for the UK Region Assembly. Under the guidance of Fr. Mathew and Fr. Carlos, attendees embarked on a reflective journey centered on the “conversation in the spirit.” The assembly resonated with the historical roots of the Claretian presence in Hayes since 1912, invoking the spirit of joy, enthusiasm, and sacrifice that characterizes the congregation’s mission.

Central to the discussions was the Congregational Dream and the Dream for the Province, emphasizing discernment and decision-making processes within the community and mission. Fr. Mathew led sessions on spiritual conversation and theological reflections, fostering a more profound understanding of intercultural living and the reorganization of provinces in Europe. He also encouraged the UK Claretians to think of St Anthony Mary Claret in the fast-changing world and culture of unity in diversity today. 

Throughout the assembly, Frs. Paul Smyth, Chris Newman, John O’Byrne, Joseph Katthula, Paul Peter, Krzysztof Stawicki, James Kennedy, Philip Blandford, Gerald Ezekwere, and Bijoy, CMFF, were urged to reflect on practical steps to enhance interculturality, foster unity in diversity, and embrace the evolving landscape of the Catholic community in Europe. The Assembly concluded with a collective prayer.

Source: Fr. Bijoy Chandra Nayak CMF, UK Region, Province of Fatima. 

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From Left To Right Namely John O’byrne, Chris Newman, Krzysztof Stawicki, Paul Smyth, Mathew Vattamattam Superior General, Carlos Candeias Provincial Superior Of Fatima Province, Gerald Ezekwere, Philip Blandford, Bijoy Chandra Nayak, James Kennedy, Paul Peter, Joseph Katthula

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