2012-12-03 SPAIN

Need of initial and ongoing formation for the fraternities

On Saturdays 17 and 24 November, in Alicante and Cordoba respectively, the fraternities of the « Mediterránea » Province came together to reflect on the proposal of the Formation Commission : the need to engage in a process of initial and ongoing formation. All told, about a hundred people took part in the two meetings. There were also eighteen brothers who accompany the fraternities.

The reflection – long, deep, didactic and clear – was directed by Danilo Farneda, member of the fraternity « Virgen de la Victoria », of Malaga.

We walk in the following of Jesus and need to have a common process of formation aiming at Christian maturity. This process is to be understood in the key of the new evagelization : a process open, ongoing, in which we grow in a balanced way in four aspects : kerygma (proclamation), diaconia (service), koinonia (communion) and liturgy (celebration). So our formation must be organic and systematic, existential and  orientated on the following of Christ in the way of Marcellin Champagnat. Danilo presented the contributions of the Magisterium of the Church and the Institute on the development and qualities of this process. He reminded us of the words of Br Charles Howard on the urgent and priority need for the fraternities to be communities in  formation drawing on the sources of the Holy Scriptures, the teachings of the Church, the theology of the lay state, the documents of the Institute and the signs of the times. This integral formation should equally open us up to what is lived elsewhere, let us be challenged beyond our provincial, national and linguistic boundaries, for the  internationalism of the Marist world constitutes a richness, a gift of God for the development of the charism.

After the presntation, we had a rich moment of dialogue for sharing our reflections. It was brief but intense. Some memorable expressions were : « without a good cake, the cherry falls », « what is not celebrated dies », « accompaniment », « plurality », « maturity », « followers of Jesus », « love suits all ages »…

It falls to us now to share this reflection in our fraternities and to take conscience of the personal and communitarian need to live a plan of formation which helps us to follow Jesus in the Marist manner. And in the Animation Team of the Fraternities and the Commission of Formation, to follow up the process proposed to bring about and strengthen consensus on the way of envisaging the Provincial Plan of Formation for the Marist Fraternities, in order to compose and, in due course, implement it.

Br Ventura Pérez profited from the two meetings to present the totally new  Secretariat of the Laity in the Province.

We also shared the table, very well prepared, symbol of the affection and value we  accord to our fraternal gatherings.

At Alicante the meeting finished with a beautiful and moving prayer, and at Cordoba we took part in the Eucharist animated by the « Marcha » groups of the school.

We say THANK YOU to the schools and communities of Alicante and Cordoba for their welcome and  availability.


Jandro Martínez


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