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The Preparatory Commission and the General Council make an assessment of the Assembly in Mendes

06/02/2008: General House - Photo gallery

On Saturday 12th and Sunday 13th January 2008, the preparatory Commission implementing the Marist International Mission Assembly gathered in order to draft a report for the General Council. On Monday 14th, the two bodies worked together the whole day long.
The goal of the Commission was to make an assessment of the process, both at local level, with the Provincial and Regional Assemblies, and at an international level, with the Assembly that gathered at Mendes. The Commission was also to present some suggestions to the General Council concerning the follow-up to the themes that were discussed and to the initiatives that came up.

With regard to the objectives set for the Assembly, the Commission and the General Council deemed that they were fully achieved. The Assembly proved an experience of international approach at all levels of the Institute. One of the aspects that were stressed the most was the discovery of a sense of belonging to an international Institute. This approach was important and it will be even more so in the future. For some, the event was the opportunity to initiate a path of conversion; for others, it was a chance to renew one’s personal commitment and strengthen one’s passion for the Marist mission. Many people said that the Holy Spirit was truly present during the entire process. The Assembly highlighted the issue of co-responsibility: brothers and laypeople were involved at the same level. And it was a chance to go deeper into the understanding of the Marist vocation of brothers and laypeople, though it will be necessary to continue examining this theme in the future.

With regard to the development of the process, that involved local stages, provincial and regional, that flowed into the meeting at Mendes, it was underlined that the choice was proven correct, and that for many provinces and regions it was indeed a valuable instrument. The material produced in order to assist the preparatory process was also deemed of great use. The assessment given by all the participants in Mendes before the end of the meeting was extremely positive and completely satisfying.

The Commission did underline also some weaker points that were written down so as to offer them as an aid to those concerned if in the future it were decided to renew such an experience.

During the meeting of the Commission with the General Council, an element that was strongly stressed was that in the final document of Mendes one could perceive the voice of God addressing several appeals to the Institute, which are actually a challenge to our responsibility today.

The Council received a few suggestions from the Commission and it will devise ways to follow-up the Assembly and bear this event of the Spirit into the life of the Institute in the year to come. Some initiatives shall be implemented as soon as possible.

At the end of the meeting, Brother Sean Sammon, the Superior General, thanked each of the participants for the wonderful collaboration, for the great efforts made and the extraordinary sense of team work established, which allowed the work to be done well. During his speech the Brother Superior General insisted on the fact that two highly significant recent events have characterised in one way or another recent history of the Marists: the Assembly of Mendes and the beatification of our martyr Brothers.

The participants in the evaluation were: Bro. Alphonse Balombe (D. R. of the Congo); Chema Pérez Soba (Spain), Dilma Alves Rodrigues (Brazil), Erica Pegorer (Australia), Bro. Juan Miguel Anaya (General Administration), Bro. Pau Fornells (General Administration), Bro. Pedro Herreros (General Administration), and Bro. Emili Turú (General Administration). Bro. John Y Tan (Philipines) was not able to attend the meeting, as he was ill in those days.

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