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90 participants gather at the ‘III Province Mission Assembly’ in Valladolid

 

Discussions focused on the Marist identity and communion between Brothers and Lay People

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Ninety Marists met in Valladolid to speak about the identity of a Marist at the III Province Mission Assembly of Compostela, held from Sept. 24 – 26.

The first day included a talk from vicar general Brother Joe McKee, on being “new” Marists, and on the “laity in a new spirit of communion,” covering the period of the 1960s until now.

“It represents a relationship from equal to equal, not from superior to inferior,” he stated. 

“There is some confusion for some brothers about their identity, perhaps because they do not understand the Second Vatican Council in which we are all called to radically follow Jesus,” he added. 

Br Joe made reference to the Marist charism, describing it as something that is not set in stone. He told how when he was in Pakistan, some schools had a majority of Muslim students but they “curiously have a Marist Spirit.” 

 

A group of six young people then spoke about what it means to be a Marist at the age of 30 and on their concerns. They highlighted presence, fraternity and family as fundamental pillars of their Marist experience.

On Sept. 25, other lay participants spoke about their experiences and feelings on shared formation and groups of spirituality.

General councillor Brother Antonio Ramalho addressed the project ‘New Models of Animation, Governance and Management,’ focussing on key Marist principles and guidelines that give meaning to the project.

He stressed that “the fact that there are more lay people than Brothers is an opportunity for the Institute.”

Ignacio Gerbolés showed participants the results of a survey completed by teachers, students and their parents on ways Marists can improve their educational works. 

The encounter ended with proposals brought forward from participants that will taken to the provincial chapter of the Compostela province in December.

Brother Óscar Martín, Provincial of Compostela, ended the encounter with a letter addressed towards the participants in which, according to a statement from the province, “invites us to be brave, for we are how really be Marists by unfolding the challenges we face.” 

“And he stresses that being Marist is a way of life and fulfilment,” it continued. 

The encounter ended with and a Eucharistic celebration which was, according to the statement, “a family celebration, which was shared around the altar and summarised what we had experienced in the previous days.”

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