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El Escorial - 16 Spanish and Portuguese-speaking Brothers take part

06/10/2011: Spain

The Marist House of Spirituality “Fuentenueva”, in San Lorenzo de El Escorial, is hosting the program “Horizontes”, a formation experience for Brothers from 35 to 45, which invites the   participants to look forward, go on pilgrimage, uproot themselves, to search for and discover from the heights “a new land”.

In the current session, which started on 4 August, 16 Spanish- and Portuguese-speaking Brothers are taking part, accompanied by Brothers Ángel Medina and Joaci Pinheiro: América Central (4), Compostela (1), Cruz del Sur (1), Ibérica (2), México Central (3), Norandina (1), Rio Grande do Sul (2) and Sta. María de los Andes (2),

“Horizontes” is organized over nine weeks, centred on themes such as personal history and knowledge, Marist spirituality, life in community, Brothers today, affectivity, apostolic dimension and an experiential re-encounter with our sources, through a pilgrimage to the Hermitage in the first week of October.

On 15 and 16 September, Brother Emili shared with the group a reflection on the current situation of our Institute, the echos of the General Chapter and the need to take care of our spirituality, remembering the words of Brother Séan: “we have not taken seriously the task of turning ourselves into ‘spiritual masters’ who can offer witness from their own experience of God”.

Up to now, the course has combined elements of exposition and times of personal reflection, especially on Friday afternoons which are reserved for an integrating synthesis of the work during the week. Great importance is also given the times of community prayer and celebration, skillfully prepared and with a strong symbolic bearing, accentuated on Mondays when the leading theme of the week is presented. In addition, the organization into little “families” or “communities” which find their own spaces for sharing and prayer, connects with the daily life of the Brothers, which is also reflected in the performance of small tasks around the property on Wednesday afternoons or the celebration of the different feasts and events which keep the family spirit spotless as the days pass.

All these ingredients, together with the Brothers taking part, make of “Horizontes” a rich experience for giving consistency to one’s life choice, reinforcing the personal processes of integral growth, having as horizon “the new land” perceived intuitively by the XXI General Chapter.

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