GC27: The Working Document

On the morning of Monday 10 March, Fr Manuel Cayo, Provincial of Northern Argentina, presented the Working Document with the help of some slides. It had already been available on the website www.sdb.org.

The document was prepared by the pre-chapter Commission chosen by the Rector Major and chaired by the Moderator.  The commission consisted of one Provincial from each region plus the Superior of the UPS. It summarized what was submitted by the ninety provincial chapters and the personal contributions of confreres  “to facilitate the discernment and the contribution that this Chapter would like to give to the confreres, young people and the Church.”

10-03-2014-GC27-Working documentIt can be said that “this working document is intended to reflect the many different situations and different sensitivities in the Congregation, which are expressed in the provincial chapters with broad convergence on key issues.”

The work of the commission was followed by the Rector Major who made an enlightening contribution at the initial stage and contributed again in various ways during the course of the work.

The commission followed the methodology and discernment process that was proposed to the Provincial Chapters: listen, study, look for the way ahead. The document is divided into the three sections proposed in the letter of convocation of GC27: Mystics in the Spirit, Prophets of Fraternity and Servants of the Young.

Each section has only one aim which is to help confreres and communities to understand more easily what the Congregation means by living with the radical approach of the Gospel.

Conversion is a recurring theme – spiritual, fraternal and pastoral conversion. Other recurring themes include the personal and community plan, the role of the Rector, and the number and quality of confreres in the community. In each of the three sections an effort is made to highlight the intrinsic unity between them.

This document is a starting point. Some important questions need to be faced when the final document is being prepared:  “What do the confreres expect at this time on the theme of the radical approach of the Gospel and the identity of consecrated life? Do they want a more effective and vital statement? Or a different kind of proposal?” We must also bear in mind that we now have as a point of reference the apostolic exhortation Evangelii Gaudiumof Pope Francis.

In the afternoon, some of the Chapter members, including the Rector Major, took the floor to share some ideas on the methodology (listen, study, look for the way ahead); on the kind of final document; on what must be done to ensure that the final document will be received in the different local situations;  and on what emerged previously in reference to the Rector Major’s report.

After a clarifying intervention by the Moderator, there was a secret ballot in which the Assembly approved the threefold methodology and discernment – listen, study, look for the way ahead.

First Published by InfoANS