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Preparatory Committee Prepares the Shared Formation Experience Brothers and Laity

12/11/2008: Canada

A warm, communal spirit was the main highlight of a committee meeting held in Montreal, Canada, October 20-24, 2008, in order to prepare a formation experience which will involve both Brothers and laity. The committee members are: Brothers Teofilo Minga (Secretary, Religious Life Commission), Bernard Régis (Hermitage), Pau Fornells (Director of the Laity Bureau), Mr. Tony Clarke (Australia), Mr. Robert Giguère (Canada), Miss Linda Corbeil (Canada). The committee’s task is to work up a detailed plan, and then to put the plan into action at the formation experience which will take place from April 26 to May 17, 2009 at Saint-Paul-Trois-Châteaux, France.

For one week, the committee worked on planning the formation experience which targets Brothers and lay people of English and French language. It is worth noting that a similar experience - for speakers of Spanish and speakers of Portuguese - took place in Equador’s capital, Quito, in July 2008, with a mixed, Brother-laity membership.

About twenty Brothers and lay people will join in this first Anglophone experience, one which aims at creating together a new path to enrich the Marist mission around the world. In order to accomplish such an aim, the participants will be invited to create a community which, in its turn, may assist the members in taking a look at various themes and in grasping and deepening some of the relevant subtleties. The preparatory committee has prepared material on each of the themes and has set up a schedule of three week’s duration. The following are the central topics of the experience:

Faith
* One’s personal relation to God
* Marist spirituality

Vocation
* One’s specific identity
* Our shared Marist identity

Relating to others
* One’s experience of relating to others
* The Marist experience in communion with the Church

Mission
* Personal experiences of mission
* Our shared mission

Formation
* One’s own formation plan
* Formation plans within my Province and my Region

We feel that this innovative experience will serve to create life-giving communities which will become signs of a renewal based on charismatic elements. Enriched by the shared experience of life, spirituality and mission, we hope to prepare the participants in such a way as to enable them to create similar experiences in their own Province and Region. We hope too that the experience will give birth to a new community of formators.

The new experience within the Marist Brothers’ Institute aims at creating a space and a time suitable for Brothers and lay people to share in common and to build Marist life together. In such togetherness, and by placing Jesus at the center of our lives, we will be able to discern the path along which he is leading us.

Linda Corbeil (Canada) – For the preparatory committee

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