2018-12-07 GENERAL HOUSE

European Marists

Everything began two years ago in Holland. November 2016 saw the beginning of the European course directed towards " Marist Leaders for the mission" which finished in Rome, last week, from 11 to 16 November. 

I feel enormous gratitude for the welcome received in every place we stayed; where we received so many examples of affection and close living from all of the communities. But, mainly, I am so thankful to have been able to take part in the path to formation and to share what it means to be a Marist today, contributing to the creation of that global family spoken of bythe XXII General Chapter. 

In Holland we learned how our Marist work is "a lighthouse of hope" for many young people who are searching for understanding, for silence, needing a home and meaningin their lives. In Alcalá de Henares, in the course of learning about  aspects such as social abilities, care of people, administration of our works or innovation, we came to understand our authentic vocation, giving the best of ourselves in the service of children and young people, to help with their growth and development. Finally, in Rome, under the title "Marist of Champagnat, we felt part of a greater mission than ourselves, illustrated by those people living in the house. They have been the best example of family, simplicity and work, everything  according to Mary. Everywhere  I have been able to feel the reality of "the face and the hands of the tender mercy of God". A latent reality in the Marist world which is demonstrated in the sharing of the group. Their diversity, their wealth, their welcome ensure that the different provinces of Europe continue giving an "audacious " response to the necessities that continually surface in all the countries in which we live.  

In a world and a global reality, the visits to other situations in Marist Europe connect us inevitably with our mission. Sharing these five weeks with the group has allowed us to experience a small " global Marist world " and discover how our heart connects with this way of living the gospel, "Marists of Champagnat for a global family. " As Brother Ernesto reminded us at the beginning of our last week in Rome: "Champagnat frequently repeated it: "Mary, this is your work" [final message of the XXII General Chapter], and it is certainly true of the experience gained in the course of these days which gives me a total belief that She will also continue looking after this "New La Valla."  


H. Ignacio Álvarez García 


A Missionary land...


Blessed Br. Henri Vergès...