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Meeting of the European Mission Team

23/01/2012: Switzerland

The European Mission Team met on 16, 17 and 18 January 2012 with the Marist community of Geneva, Switzerland. Those taking part were Brothers Máximo Blanco (Compostela), Moisés Alonso Pérez (Iberica), Robert Thunus (West-Central Europe), Gabriel Villa-Real Tapies (L’Hermitage), Aureliano García Manzana (Mediterránea), João Carlos do Prado (Secretariat of Mission) and ManelMendoza Prario (Marist International Solidarity Foundation - FMSI).

The principal aim of the meeting was to become familiar with the structure and operation of FMSI with a view to greater linking and support with the Provinces of Europe. Brothers Jean-Claude Christe and Manel Mendoza, of the Geneva community, assured the participants a warm welcome. The 16th and 17th were devoted to the   FMSI presentation: Br Manel gave an exposé on the Foundation’s structure, organisation, functioning and lines of strategy. The Brothers took the opportunity to present to FMSI the initiatives on children’s rights prescribed in the European Mission Team’s Strategic Plan. They also suggested to FMSI some support initiatives for the development of the culture of children’s rights in the Provinces and Districts.

One afternoon was devoted to learning about the offices which operate in concert with the Foundation: « Franciscans International » and « Edmund Rice International ». The team also had the opportunity to visit the various UNO offices on a guided tour.

The 17th was reserved for treating two topics of the Team’s order of the day. The  participants studied and discussed the decisions of the European Marist Conference relating to the topics presented by the Team. They also studied the initiatives provided by the Strategic Plan for 2012, the new Marist label and other matters proposed.

The meeting was judged very positive and acquaintance with FMSI allowed a greater understanding of its role and its potential for linking up with the Provinces. It was suggested to continue holding an annual meeting between FMSI and the Mission Team.

The celebration of Br Jean-Claude’s birthday was also an important moment of sharing. The Team felt very well received by the Geneva Marist community, a fraternal welcome evident in the details and attentions lavished on all the Brothers. A good « raclette » served to bind the bonds of brotherhood even closer.

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