Continuation of Sharing lived experiences
Presenters: Province of Spain, S Soledad Saez; Province of Mozambique, S. Teresa Carolina de Carvalho; Province of Portugal, S Fernanda pereira; Mission of Brazil, S. Isabel Grachane and Region of Peru, S Enith Elena Ferreira
The presentations prepared by our Provinces/Regions and Missions continued. Each one presented their joys and challenges for today and their hopes and dreams for the future. As we listened we were able to touch the spirit of Marie Rivier alive in her daughters and the creative fidelity to her Charism/charism in responding to the particular needs of their countries.
At the end of the day, the different Commissions in the General Administration have also shared some plans and echoes of their area of responsibility. The Commissions are the following: Formation, Youth and Vocation Ministry, Lay Consecrated, and the Marie Rivier Associates.
The lived experience of S Sam during the Council of Congregation 2021 first video conference via Zoom.
The reaction of Sr. Lise to the first video conference of the 2021 Council of Congregation.
Sharing of lived experiences and challenges of our Provinces, Regions, Missions
presentations: Mission of Cameroon, S Josephine Tchea; The Gambia, S. Marie Solange Badji and Mission of Japan, S. Mie Nakanishi
Finances: Fond Pontanier and General House
On the sixth day of the Council of Congregation, we continued to share the joys and challenges of our P/R/M today. Sr Josephine Tchea presented the Mission of Cameroun, Sr. Marie Solange Badji the Region of the Gambia and Sr Mie Nakanishi the Mission of Japan.
Sr. Germaine Lapierre of the Province of Québec, spoke about the Fonds Pontanier, a fund based in Québec, that helps provide for the needs of the Sisters. Sr. Germaine updated the Superiors on some changes that the Administrative Council of the Fonds Pontanier has made since the 2017 General Chapter. First, the Fonds Pontanier has allocated a certain % for the needs of the sisters and another % for the needs of our apostolates; second, she introduced to us her new collaborator in this service, Jocelyne Desloges. Sr. Claudette also gave a report on the administration of the funds of the Generalate.
During the time for open questions, S Kelly explained number C34 of our Constitutions on Patrimonial Possessions as well as a project aimed at creating our Congregation’s policy on the Protection of Minors and Vulnerable Adults. S Hortência then spoke about Ongoing Formation and the Missionary Elan of the Congregation. The participants shared their suggestions and observations on these subjects.
Initial formation - International Novitiate
Message of the 2017 General chapter
Rereading - Pathways for the Future
Today was a very interactive day… serious ‘road work’ on the way!
The Superiors discussed the regrouping of the Novitiates, a subject being studied since 2014. During the Formation Session in 2019, sisters involved in initial formation endorsed different regroupings of PM novitiates with some important notes that there would be a well-formed, well-prepared intercultural formation team. The Superiors continued the reflective study during this session. This was facilitated by S. Claudette Casavant.
Hortencia Ubisse and S. Kelly Connors recalled the Final Message of the 2017 General Chapter and through the participants’ discussion, we were able to look at what elements we can emphasize for the next two years and identify the areas that will give focus for the upcoming 2023 General Chapter.
At the final part of the session, S Claudette launched the group into rereading and discerning the priorities and new areas of evangelization based on the presentations of each participant over the past two weeks. The small group sharing opened some horizons and helped us be attentive to the realities lived in the Congregation.
We closed the session thanking each one for a lively discussion and with much love that we carry into the work that is asked of each one.
Pathways for the future, Sharing/Discernment
Celebration of our 225 years of Foundation Gestures for the future
Evaluations - Orientations
The wind blows where it wills, and you can hear the sound it makes,
but you do not know where it comes from or where it goes;
so it is with everyone who is born of the Spirit.” – John 3:8
More serious hours of work!
Today, we were launched into two moments of group sharing. With the time given, we dove into subjects that matter most in our life as a Congregation taking into consideration our realities and those around us. The two moments were well-spent exploring the signs of the times that the world is showing us and the pathways that we may take to be able to respond to these calls of the Spirit. Openness, conversion to the Gospel, creativity, risk-taking, leaving our comfort zones, solidarity, simplicity, welcoming challenges and differences are just some of the attitudes and values mentioned that may accompany us as we face the future.
The last moment was Mother Maria dos Anjos’s presentation. She emphasized that our Year of Thanksgiving must be accompanied by concrete gestures. The year we are celebrating is also a year in which the world is still plagued by COVID 19 which has impacted everyone’s life in some way. Together, we are bracing ourselves to face this unsettled year and, in God’s mercy, we are finding the rays of light and of hope towards a new future!
Our Superior General has inspired us to pursue creative responses to the needs of On-Going Formation and in revitalizing our Vocation Ministry. The Spirit continues to create newness around us and through us!
‘HOPE is like a sail of the boat that gathers the force of the winds and
pushes the boat to the deep or to the shore…’ - Pope Francis -
Interprovincial gathering by language groups – October, November and December 2021
Suggestions for a theme for the General Chapter 2023, Thank You, Final Message and Closing prayer
Today is the final day of the 3-week Council of Congregation Video conference meeting, the first in our PM History.
The first part began with the presentation of the dates for the Inter-provincial Council Meetings which will be organized by language groups. We also revisited the presentation of the concrete gestures for the 225th anniversary of the foundation of the Congregation. This project will be realized in the near future — a shimmering light in a suffering world.
Already, Mother Maria dos Anjos introduced the reflection for a theme of the General Chapter of 2023. It is her desire that as many people as possible be involved in this reflection and eventual formulation of the theme. These suggestions will be presented at the Interprovincial Council Meetings.
We continued to share on the celebration of the 39th Anniversary of the Beatification of Blessed Marie Rivier and then it was time to say “Thank You!” … to Mother Maria dos Anjos and her Council, to the Participants, and to our translator of the day.
Finally, Mother Maria dos Anjos delivered her final message of the first video conference, Council of Congregation 2021.
What we have experienced together calls us to a new beginning in order to make Jesus Christ known and loved wherever we are sent. Our family spirit, the simplicity of our relationships and the unconditional welcome of the other energize us to continue our journey with serenity and joy, to live with zeal our vocation and mission as Sisters of the Presentation of Mary: to follow Jesus Christ and to act according to his spirit C2 – an excerpt, Mo. Maria dos Anjos Alves-
Though it was our final chorus, it ended on a high note! Sr. Ginette led us through a final prayer of praise and thanksgiving.
As the meeting is concluded, let us walk with Mary, Mother of Holy Hope. She is close to her children and will always bring us farther on…
THANK YOU, EVERYONE!
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