Presentation: In the Footsteps of Marcellin Champagnat

Marist Educational Mission

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Solemnity of the Immaculate Conception of Mary.

On this important Marian feast, we wish to share with the Marist Institute this updated document “In the Footsteps of Marcellin Champagnat: Marist Educational Mission”.

This year, 2023, marks 25 years since the original document was elaborated, published and appropriated to animate the educational mission of the Institute. The recent renewal of the Constitutions and Statutes (2020) together with the approval of the Rule of Life (2020) and the development of the Strategic Plan of the General Administration (2017) have created an ideal framework for articulating a readaptation of the content of the Marist Educational Mission.

The Institute is thus offered a document that preserves the fundamental intuitions of the 1998 text and articulates other realities, proposals and orientations from a contemporary perspective. With a integral vision, it has incorporated more clearly the voices of the agents, areas of mission, contents, values and educational and evangelising propositionsthat respond to the current reality of the Marist world. It is a text that, in addition to inspiring, seeks to encourage Marist to “look beyond” on their journey in mission, believing in a future full of hope and challenge.

We offer thanks to the international team which has brought this work to completion: Ms. Ceciliany Alves Feitosa (Brasil Centro-Sul), Br. Nchang Cho (West Central Africa), Br. Michael De Wass (South Asia), Ms. Amaya Espuelas (Ibérica), Mr. Bartolomé Gil Garre (Mediterrånea), Br. Hank Hammer (USA), Br. Salvador Hidalgo (Compostela), Ms. Adriana Kampff (Brazil Sul Amazonia), Mr. Joan Palma (East Asia), Mr. John Robinson (Star of the Sea); and from the General Administration: Brothers
Carlos Alberto Rojas (Director of the Secretariat for Education and Evangelization), Mark Omede (Deputy Director of the Secretariat for Education and Evangelization), Ángel Diego García (Director of the Secretariat of Solidarity), Valdícer Fachi (Director of International Collaboration for Mission) and Brothers Luis Carlos Gutiérrez (Vicar General) and Ben Consigli (General Councilor), liaisons between the Council and the Secretariat for Education and Evangelization. During the process, we had the support and accompaniment of Br. Joseph McKee (West Central Europe) as facilitator.

Thanks to the Secretariat for Education and Evangelization for their coordination of the renewal of this document. The team worked intensively from 2021 onwards. They consulted with groups of brothers and laity of the Institute and presented the final draft to the General Council for approval. The General Council, after offering some input, approved the document in September 2023. I thank everyone for their input and ideas. This is a document that will continue to be of great help to the mission that we Marists of Champagnat carry out.

The most important thing is to live the Gospel values and our Marist values by adapting them to today’s context, so that we continue to be faithful to the charism we have inherited. This is a gift that we have received through St. Marcellin Champagnat and the first brothers, and which has been developed and enriched over more than 200 years.

Thanks to the contribution, witness, and dedication of many generations of brothers and lay men and women in the service of the education and evangelisation of children and young people, with particular attention to the most neglected. I thank all of us who strive to continue to keep alive the dream of Saint Marcellin Champagnat.

Br. Ernesto SĂĄnchez, Superior General