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Oceania Partnership Commission

19/01/2009: Australia

The Oceania Partnership Commission is preparing for a conference entitled, “Towards a 2020 Vision” from July 8-11, 2009. The conference to be held in Templestowe, at the Passionist Conference Centre, will have Lay Marist representatives attend from Oceania Region: ten representatives from each of the Provinces, and five from the District of Melanesia. The focus of the conference is the Lay Marist vocation and the identity of the Lay Marist. There is a two pronged focus to engage in: a desire to form Lay Marists in the charism deepening their faith and spirituality and a desire to invite and encourage Lay Marists to join with the Marist Brothers in the mission of the Marist Institute, working among the young, especially the most needy.

The Brothers have a clear identity and organizational structure. On the other hand there are a growing number of Lay Marists who have little corporate structure and little shared understanding of identity. Both groups share in the mission of St. Marcellin. It is hoped the conference will start addressing the situation so that Lay Marists will find a way to a shared identity and vocation. This outcome would enable a greater understanding of Lay Marists for Brothers and Lay Marists alike, enabling them to engage with each other on a more equal footing and strengthening both their positions to carry the Marist mission towards 2020 and beyond.

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