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24 November

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Marist Calendar - November

Post-noviciate director: results of the colloquium ‘depends on the openness of participants’



75 Marists in last days of encounter, discussing changes on initial formation for Brothers

12/10/2015: France - Photo gallery

Read more about the Colloquium

A post-noviciate director of a formation centre for young brothers in the Philippines believes the results of the encounter in France discussing changes on initial formation for Brothers will depend on the broad-mindedness of its participants.   

“Where it all goes, depends on the goodwill and openness of the participants (and) we can also anticipate the action of the Holy Spirit will be at work,” said Brother Peter Rodney of the Marist Asian Pacific Center, MAPAC, on Thursday, Oct. 8.

“To add this unpredictable mix, since we are gathering in the home that Marcellin built, we can be sure that he will do all he can to guide our minds and hearts to where he wants his Institute to go at this time,” he told the general house press office.

Seventy-five Marists are in their last days of a 10-day gathering in L’Hermitage to discuss ways of improving the formation process of new brothers.

The ‘Marist International Colloquium about Initial Formation’ has examined the current formation process through the results of a three-month survey, and has involved participants in workshops on inter-culturality, accompaniment and communication in social media.

Provincials, young brothers, laity, the general council, formators, and coordinators of vocations ministry and formation at provincial level, are participating in the conference, due to end on Oct. 14.

A formator of novices in the Marist province of Southern Africa labelled the gathering as “a special, wonderful and Spirit-filled experience.”

“My expectation has turned into a lived experience and I feel privileged to be here,” said Brother Norbert Mwila, based in Mozambique.

“I liked the presentation on the fourth day on Marcellin as a formator and the testimonies of the brothers who were asked to share their experiences on the topic,” he said on Oct. 8.

General councillor Brother Ernesto Sánchez, who helped organise the event alongside the Institute’s Brothers Today secretariat, underscored he is “very happy with the depth of reflection that is taking place, both during formal and informal moments.”

He also praised the work done by Brothers Tony León and Hipólito Pérez of Brothers Today, affirming that “the huge preparation work that has been done is evident, as well as the energy that is being dedicated to accompany each day of the conference.”

“The support of the community of the Hermitage is also being key to the successful development of our meeting,” added Br Ernesto.

On Oct. 7, Father Michael McGuire SSC, specialised in psycho-spiritual integration, spoke about ‘the reality of the world of young people today in initial formation.’

A formator of novices in Spain, Brother Ernesto Tendero Pérez, echoed the Marist commitment of “giving a face to a new way of being a Marist brother and lay person.”

“The variety of dynamics makes us come forth and bring out the best of ourselves, being realistic and dreamers,” said Br Ernesto.

Other speakers included vicar general Brother Joe McKee on Saint Marcellin Champagnat as a formator on Oct. 8 and superior general Brother Emili Turú on the topic ‘formation for a new beginning’ on Oct. 9.

On Saturday, Oct. 10, Br Tony Leon led discussions on a process of sharing convictions and concerns regarding initial formation and Br Ernesto Sánchez presented a summary of core values.

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