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Marist Bulletin - Number 11

 

News
25.02.2002

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TWO CENTERS DEDICATED TO ONGOING FORMATION
Manziana, Italy and San Lorenzo de El Escorial in Spain
In this edition of UPDATE, we take a look at two Marist centers for ongoing formation and their aim as stated in a recommendation of the 20th General Chapter: “To afford each brother, in the course of his initial and ongoing formation, an opportunity to gain greater self-awareness and become more open and better prepared to center his life on Jesus.” (Cf # 44). At present a session for English-speaking Brothers is taking place in Manziana and one for Spanish and Portuguese-speaking Brothers in San Lorenzo de El Escorial.

MANZIANA
In this the tenth year of Manziana as a venue for Marist Spirituality, the new team – with Des Howard as Director, Sunanda Alwis, George Fontana, and Gerry Mills SM, Chaplain) has launched out (into the deep) together with our first group on the Five Month Program. We have six Brothers from Africa, one from Madagascar, one from the Solomon Islands and three from Australia. In our third week we were blessed with a few inches of snow and the environment presented a glorious, sparkling picture under the clear blue skies that have been the feature so far. You can imagine the uninhibited excitement of the Brothers from the tropical countries when they discovered snow for the first time.
This year, besides the Five Month Program there will be two Third Age courses (Spanish and English). We are happy that this very fine facility is being well utilized. Soon we will be seeking expressions of interest for the Third Age English course as well the Five Month Spirituality Program (Mid-life, Second Novitiate, or Second Age). We need to adopt a specific name for this program to avoid confusion. Everyone seems to know what the Third Age refers to.

SAN LORENZO DE EL ESCORIAL
Last January 28th at our El Escorial Center for Spirituality, we began a Five Month Course, the 68th program to be offered since the Center was opened. At the helm are Brothers Santiago Cisneros, Director; Félix Rodríguez, Assistant Director; and Jesús Luengo, Administrator.
There are 17 Brothers in the course. We are enjoying a unique opportunity for personal growth and development, the deepening of our Marist spirituality, a period of rest after years of relentless activity, and an experience of community life more intense than that to which we’ve been accustomed. The majority of us hail from Latin America: six Brothers from Brazilian Provinces – São Paulo, Santa Catarina, Porto Alegre and Santa María, one from Colombia, two from Chile, one from Venezuela, two from Central America, and one from Mexico. From elsewhere in the world, we have one brother from Portugal and two from Spain (Bética and Levante). Our ages range from 33 to 60 years of age.
In the coming months these are specific topics that we will be working on, in academic presentations as well as in corresponding personal and communal activities: Marist Apostolic Spirituality, the Eneagram, Anthropology, the General Chapter, Personal Inheritance, Brothers in Solidarity (a two-week solidarity experience), Affectivity, the Bible, Community Life, the Constitutions, Religious Life, Refounding, and Discernment. The course will conclude with a retreat at the Hermitage. However, neither the calendar nor the program of activities is the most important thing. Before anything else, the Spirituality Course is a time for listening, internalizing, and discerning.

MEETING IN QUITO: COLOMBIA-ECUADOR-VENEZUELA
The Provincial Councils from Colombia, Ecuador and Venezuela met in Quito, Ecuador from February 1st to 3rd to continue their restructuring process on their way to forming a new Administrative Unit. They have been taking advantage of restructuring to quicken the pace of refounding, creating a Preparatory Commission for the Provincial Chapter, and also Commissions for Animation and Government, Youth and Vocation Ministry, Campus Ministry, and Economic Affairs. They have also developed a detailed timetable through the beginning of 2003 and prepared a questionnaire for all their brothers on a variety of important issues.

MARCELLIN ATTRACTING THE YOUNG - SIGN OF VITALITY
The Provinces of Santa Catarina and São Paulo, Brazil, about to become the new Marist Province of South Central Brazil, welcomed ten young men to begin their Noviatiate, a basic step along the way to becoming a Marist brother. A large group of brothers joined in the festive welcome that took place at Campinas on February 2nd. The new novices plus a group of six young men in the second year of their program at the Novitiate are being accompanied by Brothers Renato Guisleni as Master, Afonso Levis as Assistant Master, and Ilario Caresia.

EARTHQUAKE RELIEF PROJECT IN EL SALVADOR - PROVINCE RENDERS AN ACCOUNTING
The Province of Central America has published an informative bulletin accounting for the aid that it has received for victims of the earthquakes in El Salvador on January 13th and February 13th 2001. The publication details the Province’s “Vivienda digna” (Dignified housing) campaign, and includes a wealth of photos. Many thanks to the people and organizations who have been contributing to this cause in solidarity with our Salvadorean brothers and sisters.

COLLECTION OF TESTIMONIES - BOOK ON BROTHER BASILIO RUEDA
A new 112-page book In his own words and those of others: Basilio Rueda Guzmán, Another Champagnat. has just been published. Side by side, it presents 51 testimonies about Brother Basilio, Superior General from 1967 to 1985, and 51 texts by Brother Basilio himself. The text was compiled and edited by Brother Giovanni Bigotto, Postulator General of the Congregation, in charge of working with the Vatican for our causes of beatification and canonization. The original text is in French but finishing touches are now being put on editions in English, Portuguese and Spanish.

MARCELLIN’S VISION IN SERVICE TO EDUCATION - NEW UNIVERSITY CHAIR HONORS OUR FOUNDER
On February 8th the Fathers and Mothers Associations in the Province of Levante, Spain signed an agreement with the University of Alicante to create the Marcellin Champagnat Chair for the study and promotion of the Saint’s vision of Marist Education, thus making a vital contribution to the continuing education of teachers.

MARIST FIRST PROFESSIONS IN 2001 - YOUTH CONTINUE CHOOSING MARIST BROTHERS LIFE
A total of 65 young men from 27 countries on five continents professed their first vows during 2001. Wiith our Chapter delegates, “we thank God for calling us to choose life and head out into the deep.” (Cf. Chapter Document, # 51).

FREE MARIST BULLETIN ON THE WEB - A MARIST SERVICE OPEN TO ALL
Sign up family members, colleagues, current and former students and their parents, fraternity members and all your friends to receive the email edition of our Marist Bulletin – it’s absolutely free. So far about 1900 individuals and organizations are receiving the Bulletin, which is published in English, French, Portuguese, and Spanish. Sometimes the contents are the same as in “FMS UPDATE” while at other times, it’s entirely different.
We have sent out ten Bulletins since Christmas. To subscribe, simply log on to our address on the net: www.champagnat.org

NEWS BRIEFS
- Brother Demetrius Herman has been named an Honorary Citizen of Canutama City, Brazil for his dedication to education and social work in that city.
- Out of 6,047,000,000 people in the world, Catholics number 1,050,000,000, with 49.4% of them living in the Americas.
- One-fifth of the world’s inhabitants, about 1.2 billion people, struggle to survive on less than a dollar a day according to figures released this Tuesday by the Governing Board of the UN’s International Fund for Agricultural Development. More than 75% live in rural areas. According to the Fund’s Board members, if the international community doesn’t act soon, by 2015 the ranks of the poor will swell to 2 billion souls.
- In his campaign to save children, during 2001 Father Fortunato Di Noto, Founder and President of Rainbow Telephone, lodged 12,114 complaints against child pornography web sites. Death threats are a part of his life.
- 300,000 child soldiers continue to fight throughout the world in spite of the fact that the Geneva Protocol has now gone into effect. More than 85 countries still permit the recruitment of child warriors.

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