Bogotá, Colombia. The Colombian edition of the magazine, Vida Nueva, covered the Workshop on religious life organized by the Conference of Religious in Colombia (CRC). This proposed theme of this workshop, celebrated on the 2nd of March at Colegio Champagnat, was “The Today of Religious Life.”
Fr. José María Florez, CMF, President of the CRC gave the opening address to the participants and presented the motivation behind the Workshop: “The Board of the CRC wishes to animate the inter-congregational communion of religious life, which makes possible this encounter and knowledge among the different religious families, through these formation events. In the same way, we wish to re-animate hope and meaning for the religious life, in difficult times, as disciples and missionaries of Jesus Christ, in commitment to the service of those in the most need. Today, we religious men and women are called to renew ourselves contemplatively to take on, with profetic courage, the challenges of this reality.”
Presentors at the conference were Fathers: José Cristo Rey García Paredes, CMF, Director of the Theological Institute of Religious Life in Madrid, and Luis Alberto Gonzalo Díez, CMF, Director of the Vida Religiosa magazine, also from Madrid.
Father Cristo Rey developed his dissertation under the theme: “Passion for the Mission in New Times,” while Fr. Díez presented the theme: “Common Life from two perspectives: Spectator or Participant.” Before inviting responses which surfaced from their presentations, questions, points of view or fears were shared in small groups, allowing for an open discussion of concerns in terms of mission and community which correspond to religious life today.
The evaluation of the workshop was very positive. This shows an interest among religious communities for these events which help them on their journey at the service of the Kingdom of God. Because of the success of this event, the workshop will be repeated in the cities of Pereira, Cali y Medellín.