On July 5th the participants at the General Chapter continued to reflect on Discernment, trying to distinguish what is beginning to emerge and what common elements can already can be perceived. In a second session on that day, Sr. Mercedes Casas Sanchez, of the Congregation of Daughters of the Holy Spirit, presented the theme: We are MISSION and MISSION is key to Consecrated Life. Through her guidance and quoting from Evangelii Gaudium, she emphasized that Sisters and laity, are consecrated by Baptism, and that our charism remains alive and active. It is a gift of God that we have to proclaim with boldness and creativity.
July 6th brought with it reflections and discussions about co-responsibility for mission with the facilitation of consultant, Chris Lowney. He guided the Chapter participants in individual and collective activities designed to elicit thinking about leadership, examples of good leaders, and characteristics of good leadership The aim was to bring a recognition of Chapter participants as leaders, willing to always think about the whole group, to indicate the path that must be followed and to encourage the emergence of new leaders.
Such activities led the group to conclude that we need to continue to grow in trust between sisters and lay people. A deep spiritual formation is need for committed laity, to ensure that the Cabrinian culture takes root. It is important that the laity have the training and information needed to truly contributed to mission, and that their potential and capacities are valued.
On the 8th of July, the day was dedicated to building the vision, mission, and missionary priorities of the Institute. General Chapter participants spoke of the value of co-responsibility and walking together; this was confirmed. The day concluded with prayer and a ritual of appreciation and a commissioning of the laity back to their homes and missions. Sr. Barbara Staley thanked the laity for their presence and dedication to mission.
After a weekend of rest, on July 11, work continued with a better understanding of the report from the International Formation Coordinating Team (IFCT). The Sisters of the IFCT shared their experience of working on the team and were open to questions from the assembled Sisters.
The day also included discussion on the statistics compiled by the General Secretary as well as the Desiderata and Recommendations of the Provinces and Region. Prayer for the mission and the common good ended the day.
On July 12, Sr. Joan McGlinchey, MSC, with the contribution of Sister Melanie Di Pietro SC, presented a report on the Constitutions consultation results. The delegates discussed the issue of possible modifications to the Constitutions. A small team was assigned to formulate a draft mandate for comprehensive review.
The Chapter delegates also began the process of drafting the mandates and recommendations for mission for the next six-year period. It was an afternoon of intense, enriching work which emphasized the aspects needed to formulate the mandates and recommendations that will guide us in living our missionary life into the future.