2020-12-18 COLOMBIA

End of the 2020 programme of the inter-provincial novitiate in Medellín

On December 8th, with the first profession of Brother Kevin Quezada, the activities of the year in the Interprovincial Novitiate of Medellin came to an end. Brother Ricardo Alfredo Mundo Dueñas, who also finished his novitiate, made his first profession in El Salvador. As well as them, two other candidates to religious life, after the two years of novitiate, will live an extended period of six months. Four novices finished their first year and will move on to the second. Eight new novices are expected to begin their first year in February 2021.

Brother José Miguel Caballero Hierro, from the Province of Norandina, has been  Master of Novices since 2014. On December 8, he finished his term of service. The new Master of Novices is Brother Alejandro Herrera, from the Province of Central America. In addition to the Master, the formation team will consist of Brothers Jesús Hernández (sub-master) from México Occidental, and Geovanni Velasco, from Norandina.

Below is a summary of the experience spent in the novitiate during this particular year, as described in the November bulletin.

2020 at the Marist Novitiate

This 2020, at the Marist Novitiate in Medellín, has been a complex one, marked by surprise, uncertainty, sobriety, creativity and innovation to which the pandemic has brought us.

The apostolic mission was diminished, it was time to reinvent ourselves through participation in  virtual platforms and social networks, in sporadic collaborations with the Marist educational centres of the Region and in support of our neighbourhood through messages of encouragement and care. The fraternal experience in the community was accentuated by daily and exclusive living together: cooking together, shared domestic work, more frequent and innovative recreation, more time for shared holidays and festivities.

On the outside, the relationship with our families, with the Fraternity and with the Novitiate of Cochabamba by video call was a pleasant novelty.

The interior spirituality seems to have been a challenging experience for each of us because the pandemic tested our moods. We had to follow personal paths of acceptance and acceptance of the new situation. Without a doubt, the experience of silence, personal listening, the monthly retreats and the May and November retreats were a solid support. God accompanied our journey, giving us encouragement and challenging us to love more.

This year teaches us to welcome relational austerity, admiration for the simple and routine, to live today and have patience, to understand that the Marist mission, more than the activities that are performed, is the way of relating to the few or the many with whom we can find ourselves in close contact or at a distance. Being grateful to God for his love and goodness, we come to the end of this year.


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