XXVI GC: To be formed and to live in the fire of Claret (August 23, 2021)

Aug 24, 2021 | Congregation, General Chapters, Noticeboard, XXVI General Chapter

Nemi, Italy. August 23, 2021. After a Sunday of rest, in which we were able to enjoy the tranquility of this house in Nemi, the Chapter has resumed its work today. This second week, which opened with adoration and the celebration of the Eucharist, promises to be intense, full of work and experiences. The Word of the Gospel reminded us of the importance of being coherent: to seek unity between the spiritual and the other dimensions of personal and missionary life. During the Eucharist, animated by the Province of Poland, the voices of our mission in Eastern Europe, Ivory Coast and Burkina Faso resounded.

The work in the Chapter Hall focused on the third process of transformation proposed by the 2015 Chapter, which touches on two very concrete aspects of our daily journey: spirituality and formation. The General Prefects of both areas, Fr. Gonzalo Fernández and Fr. Joseph Mbungu respectively, presented the contents of their activity reports at the beginning of the morning. Both underlined the close relationship that exists between their prefectures. Following the chapter methodology, the speakers recognized the achievements and identified some common problems that require shared solutions. How are we living such important aspects as the quality of prayer and fraternal life, identification with the charism, initial and ongoing formation, etc.? What are the causes of our tendency to individualism? To what extent have we internalized the lines of force of the new General Plan of Formation? What resistances do we discover in ourselves with regard to taking advantage of the invitations to formation and the possibilities for growth that the Church and the Congregation offer us? What are we lacking?

The rest of the day focused on the search for answers to these and other questions that affect us deeply because they touch the evangelical quality of our life. Discernment and conversation marked the rhythm of the hours. The work in groups at the end of the morning served as the basis for a rich exchange of concerns and proposals in the Chapter Hall, which continued until the time of evening prayer.

The last moments of the day opened the way to conclusions, or at least suggestions for overcoming these areas of shadows. The members of the Chapter were committed to creating a culture of growth in the spiritual life and in ongoing formation. If we neglect these aspects, our desire to be rooted and bold can become a mere chimera.

In the afternoon session, Fr. Mathew Vattamattam reported that, after a PCR test, one of the capitulars had tested positive for covid-19. As a precaution, even though no one else showed symptoms, all the capitulars were tested again after the test they had already undergone when they arrived in Rome. Thank God, in this last test all the capitulars, except one, were negative. Therefore, we have taken the necessary measures to deal with the situation in accordance with the established protocol. With all the precautions and extreme prudence, the Chapter assembly will continue its path.


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