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Second encounter of the Preparatory Commission

11/03/2016 / 7063 |

22nd General Chapter: Second encounter of the Preparatory Commission

The commission’s members are Brothers Joseph McKee, Eugène Kabanguka, Carlos Huidobro, Ben Consigli, João Gutenberg, Álvaro Sepúlveda, Vincent Kouassi, Juan Carlos Fuertes, Rajakumar Soosai Manickam, Darren Burge and Pau Fornells. Its first meeting was held in November and its second one was held from Feb. 22 – 26 at the general house in Rome.

The commission also met with the general council and with several representatives of the commissions of the Constitutions, New Models and the Secretariat of the Laity to share specific and joint work that needs to be developed on the journey towards the XXII General Chapter.

In both encounters, participants sought consensus on what the Spirit of God wants to promote in our Institute at this historic moment, after an initial moment dedicated to sharing the lives of the members of the commission - an aspect that has been considered very important.

The ideas of Brother Emili, his Council and Committees contributed a lot. From the beginning, it was clear that counting on the help of an external facilitator and expert would greatly help our task. So with the approval of the general council, Mathieu Daum, from France, was assigned to this task. He was present in the second encounter in February and will accompany the entire process of the preparatory phase and the General Chapter.

The perspective of the entire preparation of the Bicentenary, animated by the messages of Pope Francis, the spirit experienced in our latest international encounters (General Conference – Hermitage 2013 – and the International Assembly of the Marist Mission – Nairobi 2014), as well as the letters of Brother Emili, helped us find what could be the principal focus of the XXII General Chapter: to recover the fundamental inspiration of Marcellin and the first Brothers to update it in the world today.

To achieve this goal, we consider it essential to make progress on these three objectives: to grow in contemplative dialogue, to be weavers of fraternity and to go out to the existential peripheries.

It is about helping us to “create together (co-create) a new beginning for the Institute,” an experiential dynamic that touches our personal, community, provincial and institutional life.

Participants want to involve Brothers, laity and young Marists in three stages: before, during and after the chapter. There will be a continuity in the presence of lay Marists and young brothers during the chapter. 

It will also be ensured that, for a few days, the capitulants may be in contact with a group of children and youth in the Norandina province. Before and during the Chapter – as has been already done in other provincial and international encounters - it is thought to form fraternities of brothers and laypeople who favour the experiences of contemplative dialogue and exit to the existential peripheries, so indicative of what we are called to live in each of our communities and local groups. 

Before and during the Chapter – as has been done in other provincial and international encounters – an aim is to form fraternities of brothers and laity who favor the experiences of contemplative dialogue and going to the existential peripheries, to be a sign of what we are called to live in each of our communities and local groups.

One of the chapter’s main subjects will be specifically centred on the life and mission of the brothers, since the theme for updating the Constitutions and the new Vatican document “Identity and Mission of the Religious Brother in the Church” deserve it. Other important subjects will be the most adequate processes to develop the vocation, lay Marist commitment and belonging, the new models of organising the Institute and, of course, everything that involves the election of the new superior general and his council.

The XXII General Chapter will begin on Sept. 8 next year in Rionegro, close to Medellin, Colombia. 

The Institute wants that this event’s venue has also an impact on its development, since it speaks about ecclesiology, preferential option for the poor, efforts for dialogue and peace, greater environmental awareness and the particular welcoming of the peoples of Latin America.

It is hoped that during the beginning of September, the materials needed for the development of the phase before the chapter reach all of the communities of brothers and groups of laity of the Institute.