2023-03-09 GENERAL HOUSE

Superiors of Administrative Units with the General Council listening to emerging needs

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On the fourth day of the meeting of the Superiors of Administrative Units with the General Council, that began on March 6, the Superior General and his Council proposed to the participants another call presented by last year’s General Conference: emerging needs. The Conference had asked that together, Brothers and lay people on mission:

  • Engage in a shared discernment to respond to emerging needs, which may demand creative re-imagination of the what and the how of our mission.
  • Evaluate our presence among the poor and prioritise the presence of Brothers in situations on the margins.
  • Put resources into a significant presence among young adults and give attention to those who are far from the faith.

In the first session, Brothers João Carlos do Prado and Óscar Martín, General Councilors, motivated reflection on listening to emerging needs. They invited the participants to three attitudes:

  • TO DISCERN in a shared manner to respond to emerging needs, reinventing the mission
  • To qualify OUR PRESENCE among the poor and prioritize the presence of brothers and sisters in frontier situations.
  • To promote a significant presence among YOUNG ADULTS and give attention to those ALOYED FROM THE FAITH.

Then they asked everyone to reflect in groups about the new needs that have arisen in your country or province in the last 3 years. They have also put the question: How are we already responding to these needs? And finally, the participants were invited to think about the actual presences in the own Administrative Unit and verify if they respond to the new needs.

The second session was dedicated to Child Protection & Safeguarding, specifically checking how the Child Safeguarding Standards are being implemented as indicated in the Manual for Administrative Units. The meeting was advised by Councilors Ben Consigli, Óscar Martín and Ken McDonald. They stressed that to meet this standard, each Province must develop a policy committed to a victim-centered approach.

There was room for discussion at the tables, which were based on the following questions:

  • Concerning the theme of Child Safeguarding what is your experience of the handover takeover as Provincial / District Leader?
  • What did you appreciate about this process?
  • What would have helped you to understand the theme of child safeguarding in your province better?
  • How does your province go about monitoring the implementation of the policies in the province’s ministries?
  • How does your province keep records and files concerning allegations?

The afternoon, as on the other days, was reserved for the presentation of ongoing projects by the secretariats and departments of the General Administration. Brother José Sánchez, director of the Secretariat of Education and Evangelization, spoke about the most important initiatives carried out by his sector. For their part, Brothers Ángel Diego and Francis Lukong, directors of the Secretariat of Solidarity, spoke of the initiatives inherent in the help the Institute is giving to situations in need of Marist solidarity. Andrea Rossi, director of FMSI, also presented the most outstanding Foundation’s initiatives.


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