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Marist Bulletin - Number 41



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International group of brothers helps develop General Council’s Plan of animation

From December 5-10 at our General House in Rome, Br. Théoneste Kalisa, from the D. R. of Congo, General Councilor in charge of the new Vocation Ministry Commission, and Br. Ernesto Sánchez, from Western Mexico, the Commission’s Secretary, met with Brothers Peter Ernst (Sydney, Australia), Remy Mbolipasiko (D.R. of Congo), Joachim Sperandio (Brazil Centro-Sul), Valerià Simón (Catalunya, Spain), and Bernard Beaudin (Canada). The aim of the gathering was to exchange ideas and experiences and provide input for a plan of animation being developed by the General Council. The group examined the topic of vocations in depth, and analyzed the many factors that have a bearing on the Lord’s invitation to today’s young people to follow Him.
The brothers adhered to the same methodology as that of the last General Chapter, making use of the see-judge-act process. The discernment process revolved around two key biblical phrases: Jesus’ advice, “Cast your net over the other side and you will find something” (Jn 21, 6), and His disciples’ response, “At your word…” (Lk 5,5) After having studied a series of documents, the group identified strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and risks involved in our search for new vocations.

Brother Seán Sammon encourages inviting youth to become brothers
On Saturday, December 7th, brothers from the Council, General Administration, and International College communities at the General House, as well as those from Manziana were invited to participate in these sessions. More than 40 brothers attended and were greeted by a letter of welcome and encouragement that Br. Seàn had sent from the Philippines. “I believe,” he wrote, “that our way of life is a reflection of what the Church will look like in the near future… We enter the lives of others without pretense, position or power, simply as brothers… My hope is that your discussions will only serve to deepen your love for our life and mission. And as a consequence, that this love will become a fire that impels you in the task of inviting young people to join us as brothers of Marcellin.” The day’s work involved the judge phase of the discernment process, and was done in plenary and small-group sessions. Some approaches were proposed for the act phase, which were useful for the work that was done by the core group in later sessions. It was an exciting day, with the spirited participation of many brothers in examining topics from multicultural perspectives, topped off by a Marian prayer service at the end of the day. The results of all this work will be presented to the General Council to assist it in developing a final version of the plan.

Drinking from springs of living water

At a Benedictine retreat house in Kandy, Sri Lanka, Brothers Emili Turu and Wency Calimpon gave a retreat for our brothers from Sri Lanka and Pakistan December 4-10.
The Province, on mission in both countries, has 38 brothers. 20% are below the age of 40, 50% are between 40 and 60 years old, and 30% over 60. A total of 30 brothers took part in the retreat.
It was a tremendous experience for those who attended as well as for the two brothers who organized these prayerful days.

Young men keep saying yes to the Lord

Five novices professed first vows on December 8th at the Mary, Mother of the Church Novitiate in Campinas, Province of Brazil Centro-Sul.
Br. Tercílio Sevegnani received the vows in the name of the Superior General. About 200 people – brothers, family members, and friends – participated in this joyful celebration.


An English-language Third Age course that began on October 20th in Manziana, some 70 kilometers (about 45 miles) north of Rome, ends today. These two months have provided opportunities to deepen spirituality and visit the Hermitage and other Marist sites in France. Brother Seàn and the General Council were present as speakers and guests during the session. A team of three brothers directed the program – Desmond Howard from Australia, Sunanda Alwis from Sri Lanka, and George Fontana from the USA.

From the FMS Update team

The team that edits and translates FMS Update sends each of you our best wishes for a Merry Christmas and Happy New Year. We pray that our Savior will be reborn in our hearts and that each of us will remain committed to working for greater social justice and solidarity, making a special effort to help the poorest and most vulnerable children and young people in our world.

- Brothers Pedro Herreros and Santiago Cisneros are directing a retreat in Santa Cruz, Bolivia from December 15-21.
- December 16-22 Brothers Seàn Sammon and Antonio Peralta are giving a retreat in Chosica, Peru. During that same time period, Brothers Luis García Sobrado and Teófilo Minga are directing one in Campinas, Brazil Centro-Sul.
- December 18-22 in Nairobi, Kenya, Brothers Théoneste Kalisa and Michael Oruche are presenting a workshop at the MIC.
- December 21-22 in Luján, Argentina, Brother Antonio Ramalho is participating in an inter-provincial assembly for Rio de la Plata, Cordoba, and Paraguay.
- December 26-30 in Alicante, Spain, Brothers Maurice Berquet and Emili Turú will participate in an inter-provincial assembly to launch our new Mediterranean Province from the restructuring of Bética and Levante in Spain, Italy, Syria-Lebanon, and the District of West Africa.
- December 26-31 in Florianópolis, Brothers Claudino Falchetto and Teófilo Minga will direct a retreat for the Province of Brazil Centro-Sul.
- December 27-January 2 Brother Luis García Sobrado and Eduardo Navarro will be giving a retreat in Chile.
- December 27-January 2 in Mar del Plata, Brothers Antonio Ramalho and Antonio Peralta will direct a retreat for our Provinces in Argentina.
- December 28-January 2, Brothers Peter Rodney and Michael de Waas will be giving a retreat for our brothers in India.
- December 27-January 3 Brothers Seàn and Pedro Herreros will take part in the Provincial Chapter of our new Norandina Province, born of the restructuring process in Colombia, Ecuador and Venezuela.

- We encourage the brothers this holiday season to give friends and relatives a subscription to our Marist Bulletin, which is sent by E-mail free-of-charge. To give this gift, visit us at www.champagnat.org
- Hot off the press: FMS Marist Echo Number 42; also, a new, up-to-the minute book of our international addresses, which is on its way to the Provinces.
- Pope John Paul’s Message for the World Day of Peace on January 1st, 2003 is based on Blessed John XXIII’s Encyclical Pacem in terris, and is entitled “‘Pacem in terris,’ a permanent commitment.”

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