Ismael BELTRÁN MILLÁN. Espagne
The 44th General Chapter has organizational elements different from previous Chapters. Phases 1 and 2 which have concluded (Building Community- looking at reality) and the 3rd Phase which is almost over (Discernment- seeing with the eyes of faith) are leading us “gently and with wisdom” to be able to know how to identify THE CHALLENGES WHICH THE INSTITUTE WILL BE FACING IN THE NEXT 20 YEARS. This identification is more the fruit of intense personal and community prayer and of deep dialogue between the Capitulants than of the abundant preparatory baggage with which we all arrived. Our prior critical prejudices against the time-table of the 3rd Phase are disappearing.
The groups (A,B,or C…) are suitable spaces for listening, speaking, sharing, ….and for sensing from where the wind of the SPIRIT is coming and where it is going.
The atmosphere is GOOD and many are the seeds which the granary is producing. I include among them the minute organization of attention to groups and persons on our arrival on the part of the Brothers and Collaborators of the Mother House,…..and also the Regional evenings of the first week.
The presumed nervous feeling due to the fact that we do not yet have any line of action or concrete proposal voted, nor any map drawn of the best possible form of government, nor……is subsiding. At present the feeling is of peace. Will it be the fruit of the hour and a half of night-time Adoration with which we end each of the days of this phase? Surely; but the peace is also the fruit of the contagious and shared hope and of the strength to persevere in the search for possible consensus and better solutions.
Some words from our Lasallian vocabulary keep coming up with emphasis in all the groups. Another thing is the fact that we are giving to these words with one voice, a similar meaning. We hope to achieve this with the strength of the Spirit. “The hope that what we are and what we do will be always new, makes God’s plan a reality, even in failure and on the cross”.(Br.Miguel Campos)
Gerardo Alfonso CASTILLO - Venezuela
I see as something very positive the effort which is being made to give to our major assembly a more suitable shade of our identity as religious. Even if the beginning of the Chapter had a tight agenda and some dense contents, I think that it was an excellent time for sensitizing the heart. We have always seen ourselves as men who were very ‘stingy’ with our thoughts and this does not always help in detecting the steps of the Spirit.
The Assembly of Capitulants has subtly given its opinion: we want a fraternal Chapter and not leadership by small factions; a Chapter of consensus and not of policy processes. I am happy to see the importance that has been given to the liturgy, prayer and fraternal sharing.
Up to now one feels an environment of fraternity.