March 1st, 2016
The pre-chapter commission had its 4th meeting during the first week of February, working on some of the final details for the 36th chapter which celebrates the 200thanniversary of the Congregation.
DAY TEN: (23 September) Discussing reports on the theme
The scholastics from Madagascar prepared a beautiful Morning Prayer, together with a video, for this 10th day of the General Chapter. The video featured not only the scholastics singing and praying but also lovely pictures of the famous baobab trees of Madagascar. During the prayer, Fr. Gilberto PIÑÓN, Assistant General, gave a meditation entitled: The Future of the Oblate Mission depends on our common discernment.
This day was principally for beginning to listen to and discuss reports from the six focus groups that were created to treat the theme of the Chapter: the Oblate Mission. The first group talked about: "The new faces of the poor.” They had divided into subgroups so their presentation was made by: Fr. Rémi LEPAGE (Poverty in family life; Spiritual Poverty); Fr. Dilip SARKAR (Migrants, refugees and the homeless); Fr. Derrick WARNAKULASURIYA (The poor confronted by injustice or violations of their rights); Fr. Gilberto PIÑÓN: (Ecological sustainability -- "Mother Earth” as a face of the poor).
Following each presentation, there is a period for silent reflection, small group exchanges, and comments or questions from the rest of the Chapter members.
In the afternoon, it was the turn of the second group whose topic was "The Oblate Mission with Youth.” Making the presentation on this topic were Frs. Ismael GARCIA-MORENO, Lukas MOSEMEDI, Andrzej JASTRZEBSKI, Vlastimil KADLEC and Charles NABWEJNE. The discussion session showed that ministry with youth has taken a very important place in the Oblate heart and spirit, just as it was for St. Eugene de Mazenod, even before he founded his Congregation.