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Marist Calendar - December

Continuing and renewing the formation of formators



Meeting of formators of Arco Norte

19/10/2019: Colombia

From 21 to 29 September, 13 Marist Brothers dedicated to the formation of new brothers from different countries in the Arco Norte Region, met in Colombia, invited by the Provincials of Marist Arco Norte, to share experiences, ideas, and to draw up a working plan for facing the new challenges presented by modern times.

Brothers Guillermo Villarreal (México Occidental), Toño Cavazos and Jean Mance Louis Jeune (México Occidental - Haiti), Daniel Herrera, Enrique Ruiz and Javier Peña (México Central), Juan Carlos Bolaños and Alejandro Herrera (América Central), Carlos Andrés Obando, Geovanni Velasco and José Miguel Caballero (Norandina), Rodrigo Ortiz (Franciscan, chaplain) participated in this First Meeting of Initial Formation as Arco Norte), accompanied by Brother Albert Rivera (Coordinator of the Formation of Brothers and Laity of Arco Norte).

The brothers - who serve in the initial formation of the brothers in the houses of formation and formative communities during the postulancy, novitiate and post-novitiate stages - met with the objective of seeking common regional ground for initial formation in the Marist vocation. And in preparation for this, they worked together with the provincial teams of initial formation on the strengths and weaknesses of initial formation, the opportunities and difficulties, based on some current documents which proposed emphasis on these.

As a result of the meeting and reflection on their work, the Brothers visualized the main challenges they face:

  • To develop processes and experiences that help the young person to discover what he brings with him, placed in his heart by God, and to identify himself with Jesus and his project, from an incarnated spirituality, through itineraries that foster the search for God, the strengthening of interior life, the living of silence and the capacity for communication. To live the newness of religious life in a simple and austere way, allowing ourselves to be sensitive and close to the poor, discovering the causes of their poverty, giving evangelical witness and committing ourselves to the transformation of their reality, especially in the face of the needs of the NNAJ.
  • inspired by the Gospel, to promote a culture of ECOS or encounter, expressed through welcoming and inclusion, close communication and dialogue, care for our common Home, sincere interpersonal relationships, fraternal and family spirit, leading to a life of service and dedication to others.
  • To develop constant and personalized processes that allow the integration of evangelical values into daily life in formation communities in which brothers and laypeople commit themselves to accompaniment, formation, human and Christian growth.
  • To encourage a change of mentality (in those in formation, in the Brothers and in the laity) in order to live in communion, discerning and respecting what is specific to each vocation, enriching Marist life in all its aspects.
  • To continue and renew the formation of formators, taking advantage of institutional spaces and other resources, motivating new brothers for this task, in order to help the integral growth of those in formation.
  • To revise and update the itineraries and formative processes so that they help in the discernment of one's own life, in a personalized way, adapted to the contexts and calls of Religious Life, of the Institute and of the Region, with strategies for communication and cooperation between brothers and laity.

The formators hope that these challenges will be reference points in their joint journey in the coming years as Arco Norte, together with the initiatives that came from each of them and that led them to propose implications for each stage of formation and for the Region.

To conclude, the Brothers are grateful for the spirit of fraternity that they have lived as a community and they hope to share together an intercultural and regional family atmosphere, by listening to God.

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