Pres-Convocation CGXXIII ENGLISH

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Circular letter n. 934
Letter of
Convocation of
GC XXIII
First Part
- Objectives of the Circular Letter n. 934
- Steps taken to identify the emerging challenges
and reach the formulation of the theme for GC XXIII
- THEME of GC XXIII
- Elements of reflection
Second Part
THE REAL WORLD CHALLENGES US
THE CALL TO NEW EVANGELISATION
HOME A PLACE OF ENCOUNTER AND SENDING FORTH
VALDOCCO AND MORNESE: PROPHETIC SOURCES
WHAT KIND OF HOME IS NEEDED TO EVANGELISE TODAY?
CONCLUSION
Objectives of Circular Letter n. 934
- Official convocation
of General Chapter XXIII
- Sharing of the steps taken
in preparation for General Chapter XXIII
It is Mother’s desire
that from this point forward
all of us may journey together
towards this event
that touches the communities
and each one of us.
Steps taken to identify the emerging challenges &
reach the formulation of the theme for GC XXIII
- Attention to today’s socio-cultural context
- Reflection on the reality of the Provinces
through the visits
- Listening to what emerged from the Mid-Chapter
Evaluations and the proposals of the Interprovincial
Conferences, the SPR Province and the communities
that depend directly on Mother General
Steps taken to identify the emerging challenges and
reach the formulation of the theme for GC XXIII
- A review of the journey undertaken by the Institute in
recent General Chapters (1984-2008)
- Attention to the ecclesial perspective of new
evangelisation, starting from the experience of the
Assembly of the Synod and of religious life today
THEME of GC XXIII
THEME of GC XXIII
- The theme finds its place within the context of the new
evangelisation and of the problems linked to the lack of
faith, of relationships, of meaningful points of reference,
and of an environment in which to feel at home.
- In continuity with the paths of conversion to
foreseeing love indicated by General Chapter XXII.
THEME of GC XXIII
The HOME/HOUSE in the Salesian tradition is:
- A family environment made up of FMA, young
people, laity,
- It is an atmosphere of co-responsability
- A space in which to proclaim Jesus
- Vocational appeal
- Experience of communion in the style of the
Preventive System that expands horizons of mission
to the needs of the Church and the area.
THEME of GC XXIII
- The key to reading the theme is given by our
identity as FMA consecrated women (C 8)
- An indispensable condition for an evangelising
educational action is the witness of one who “lives
in communion the ideals she proclaims” (C 68)
- The urgency of allowing ourselves to
be evangelised so that our lives
may become evangelising starting
from our own coherence, from
our style of community relationships.
Elements of reflection
- The socio-cultural and ecclesial situation of today
- The demands of the new evangelisation
- The Word of God and the charismatic sources
Aim of General Chapter XXIII
To help the whole Institute and each FMA
and educating community
to renew its being and its relating,
as a way of evangelizing.
THE REAL WORLD CHALLENGES US
A
THE CALL TO NEW
EVANGELISATION
B
HOME A PLACE OF ENCOUNTER
AND SENDING FORTH
C
VALDOCCO AND MORNESE:
PROPHETIC SOURCES
D
WHAT KIND OF HOME IS
NEEDED TO EVANGELISE TODAY?
E
THE REAL WORLD CHALLENGES US
A
A HOME TO BE PROTECTED AND BUILT
We note that in this home, which is a world, rich in many scientifictechnological conquests, the person is not at the centre.
The social teaching of the Church offers humanity the key to a
Gospel reading of the present situation.
The earth is a gift of God who created it out of love. Today there is a
strong call to be converted from being consumers and exploiters
to being guardians of creation.
THE REAL WORLD CHALLENGES US
A
IN A CONSTANTLY CHANGING SOCIETY
Change is a permanent fact in culture and in society today.
Challenges:
- The economic crisis
- The phenomenon of migration
- Politics
- The challenge of communication, that influences our way of seeing
the human person, with profound repercussions in the area of
interpersonal relations
THE REAL WORLD CHALLENGES US
A
IN A CONSTANTLY CHANGING SOCIETY
- How can the virtual generation, the ‘invisible’ generation of the cell
phone, the computer and the use of social networks be educated? It is
a considerable challenge for us, educators of young people.
- A profoundly changed society offers the Church the opportunity and
the incentive to re-think its own presence in the world.
THE REAL WORLD CHALLENGES US
A
THE CHURCH A LIVING PRESENCE AMONG THE PEOPLE
Fifty years after the celebration of the Vatican II Ecumenical Council
there is a greater awareness in the Church of being the People of God
on a journey, sharing the joys and hopes of humanity.
Humanity is living through a crisis of planetary dimensions, not only
at a cultural level, but also at the level of faith.
In a world, in which every trace of God often seems to be lost, the
Church has confidence in the prophetic witness of consecrated
persons.
THE REAL WORLD CHALLENGES US
A
YOUNG PEOPLE SEARCHING FOR A HOME
As FMA we feel particularly challenged by the profound needs of
young people to whom we look with confidence because, as Don Bosco
said, they are the weakest and most fragile section of society, but also
its hope and strength for the present and the future.
Today, as FMA we are called to be a HOME in which the young people,
especially the poorest, can experience an alternative way of living.
THE CALL TO NEW EVANGELISATION
B
At this moment in history, the Institute welcomes with renewed
availability and joy the call to new evangelisation that the Church
makes to every Christian community and to every person who has met
Jesus.
Our communities are called to be ever more houses where the Word of
God resounds and, as in Mornese, houses of the love of God where the
Gospel of charity is proclaimed with ones life.
THE CALL TO NEW EVANGELISATION
B
EVANGELISATION AS AN ENCOUNTER WITH JESUS
CHRIST AND LIFE WITNESS
Faced with disconnection from the faith in cultures that
have been for centuries imbued with the Gospel, the
Church questions itself, in the first place regarding its life,
the depth of its faith, its encounter with Jesus.
The Church is aware that evangelisation does not begin
with what it does, but with the working of God.
THE CALL TO NEW EVANGELISATION
B
EVANGELISATION AS AN ENCOUNTER WITH JESUS
CHRIST AND LIFE WITNESS
Faith is not founded on ideas, but on encounter with
Jesus.
As FMA we feel challenged to re-think the method
and the languages of evangelisation. Evangelising is not
just proclaiming the good news. Our whole life must
become good news.
THE CALL TO NEW EVANGELISATION
B
EDUCATION A PRIVILEGED CHANNEL FOR EVANGELISATION
The Church looks with hope to the new generations.
The Synod Assembly also expressed the hope that consecrated life
would be aware of the responsibility to bring its specific contribution to
the educational commitment, because the communication of the faith
takes place in a special way through education.
HOME A PLACE OF ENCOUNTER
AND SENDING FORTH
The Word of God helps us to read the chapter theme in depth:
The experience of HOME
The biblical concept of home implies a twofold meaning :
that of a building and that of
a group of persons, a family, a history
C
HOME A PLACE OF ENCOUNTER
AND SENDING FORTH
C
GOD LIVES IN OUR HOME
- In Jesus “God has made his dwelling among us” (Jn 1: 14)
- Often Jesus, after having spoken to the crowds, withdrew “to the
house” to explain the content of his words in greater depth.
- For Jesus the house is the place of relating, of the manifestation of
his divinity, of sending forth to bring the good news.
HOME A PLACE OF ENCOUNTER
AND SENDING FORTH
MARY HOME OF THE LIVING GOD
- The presence of Mary in the life of Jesus and in the
life of the Church makes the biblical meaning of the
home as the dwelling place of God more tangible.
- Mary is the model of total abandonment to the
Word. She is the house built on the rock.
- In the Gospel texts, Mary is often presented in the
context of a home.
C
HOME A PLACE OF ENCOUNTER
AND SENDING FORTH
THE CHURCH, A HOUSE OF COMMUNION OPEN TO ALL
PEOPLE
- Jesus himself becomes the home of those who live in him.
- Remaining in Christ means also remaining in the Church.
- The early Church often appears in the Acts of the Apostles
as a house, a community of first proclamation and of
conversion.
C
VALDOCCO AND MORNESE:
PROPHETIC SOURCES
D
- Valdocco is the house where “the God atmosphere” and “the family
atmosphere” mingled, creating one of holiness.
- In today’s context, so different from that of our beginning, we
continue to live the same educational passion that springs from the da
mihi animas cetera tolle and from the assignment “I entrust them to
you”.
VALDOCCO AND MORNESE:
PROPHETIC SOURCES
D
COMMUNITIES ROOTED IN THE LORD JESUS
-The life of Don Bosco and of the young people in the
house of Valdocco was sustained by Jesus, present in
the Eucharist, the centre towards which all gravitated.
- The presence of Jesus is the heart of the Mornese
community, its dynamic centre, what urged it on to
conversion and witness.
VALDOCCO AND MORNESE:
PROPHETIC SOURCES
A HOME WHERE ONE EXPERIENCES FAMILY
- With the foundation of the Oratory of Valdocco Don Bosco
wanted to give his boys a home, a family, not a boarding school.
- In the community of Mornese, the house “of the love of God”
they lived affection and mutual trust as in a family. Mother
Mazzarello educated the Sisters and the young people to total
trust in Our Lady and to live trusting in her help.
D
VALDOCCO AND MORNESE:
PROPHETIC SOURCES
A COMMUNITY WITH A MISSIONARY VISION
- The house of Valdocco was open to broad visions and projects.
The system that animated it moved within a broad vision of
evangelisation and enkindled great ideals in the young people.
- Mornese was a house that was open to the world, where one
breathed an evangelising dynamism that led people to become
witnesses to Jesus among those who did not yet know Him.
D
VALDOCCO AND MORNESE:
PROPHETIC SOURCES
A COMMUNITY WITH A MISSIONARY VISION
The missionary spirit was not lived as an additional activity
for the Institute, rather it constituted an essential element:
It was nourished by joy in one’s vocation and apostolic courage.
D
WHAT KIND OF HOME IS NEEDED TO
EVANGELISE TODAY?
E
Today, we are called to complete the work sketched
by Don Bosco and Maria Domenica Mazzarello
“painting in the colours … developing the seed” ,
to restore the splendour to the ancient colours with new brushstrokes.
WHAT KIND OF HOME IS NEEDED TO
EVANGELISE TODAY?
E
RELATIONSHIPS AS A WAY OF EVANGELISING EDUCATION
A Gospel style of relationship is more easily legible today, even by
those who do not believe. It is necessary to cultivate some attitudes:
- a spirit of gentleness that leads us to welcome diversity with joy
- the simplicity of the poor who know how to share
- the awareness of the needs of others of the one who hungers and
thirsts for justice
- the resilience of one who accepts trials as a sign of fidelity
- the transparency of heart and life that makes one optimistic and
caring.
The community becomes a home where we form each other, educate
and grow.
WHAT KIND OF HOME IS NEEDED TO
EVANGELISE TODAY?
THE ENVIRONMENT AS A PLACE OF ENCOUNTER AND
MUTUALITY
Young people do not reach God and encounter Jesus if
we only speak of Him, but if they can touch him,
experience him, in a community that lives and
witnesses, if we offer them the conditions needed
to become agents of transformation and evangelisation
in their own environment.
E
WHAT KIND OF HOME IS NEEDED TO
EVANGELISE TODAY?
E
TOGETHER, WE RESPOND TO DEEPEST NEEDS OF YOUNG PEOPLE
- Encounter and mutual relations in a shared mission are, today, a
prophetic sign that makes visible the plan of communion to which
God calls each person and all peoples.
-The witness to the joy of having met Jesus and of living in his love as
an educating community is a priority for evangelisation today and a
prophecy of hope for humanity, especially for young people.
CONCLUSION
We are entering into a period of deep spiritual experience and of
communion with the whole Institute involved in this process of
preparation for this charismatic event.
Let us seek to create in our houses a favourable atmosphere for
involvement in prayer and reflection.
Let us commit ourselves to live this time of grace, accompanied by
Mary, the dwelling place of God and Star of the new evangelisation.
O Mary Help of Christians,
we entrust ourselves to you in our commitment
to be, today, with young people, a home that evangelises.
Make us capable of renewed conversion to the Lord,
that, evangelised by Him, we may be able to witness
the beauty of the Gospel to the younger generations.
Grant that, touched by the Word that saves,
Like Don Bosco and Mother Mazzarello,
we may live the passion of the “da mihi animas cetera tolle”
in order to radiate joy and hope
where uncertainty makes life fragile,
especially for young people.
Support the Church in its mission of evangelisation
that all may encounter Jesus, the rock of salvation.
Enkindle in the hearts of many young people
the desire to follow Him.
We ask you, Mother, to open all our hearts
to the breath of the Spirit
in our journey of preparation for the coming General Chapter.
AMEN!
Circular letter n. 934
Letter of
Convocation of
GC XXIII
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