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ai15 01The Group All Together

From May 1st to May 3rd, the Italian Area met together for their annual Assembly which gave us the joy of spending time together to let ourselves be inspired by the guidance of the Holy Spirit.

The title of our meeting was: “Towards the Community of Life” to emphasize our desire, as Apostles of the Resurrection, to serve today’s people.

A pomegranate was placed on every table: a special fruit, both for its bittersweet taste and for the numerous separate red seeds that are unified together. Observing it, we reflected that we are all called to be a visible sign of communion as we live out the Congregation’s various ministries.

The Sisters and the Associates of each small community presented their various Ministries in a colorful and creative way -- a source of joy and gratitude. We enriched each other reciprocally by witnessing how the charism takes life in the different areas of Italy. Afterwards, we worked together at our tables and all shared their unique experience of their service, highlighting the challenges and the joys. We concluded this first day by thanking God for the abundance of life and for the fruits of the Eucharistic Celebration.

 

ai15 04Working together at our tables
ai15 02Sr. Licia Mazzia with Concilors Sr. Marina Triglia and Sr. Giannica Selmo
ai15 03The Associates: Nicola Gazzano, Caligero La Zara and Sebastiano Passari
ai15 05A Moment of Prayer

The following day, sr. Marvi Delrivo broadened our vision of the Congregation, by presenting the Ministries that we conduct in the various geographical Areas and in the Mission in the Philippines. She encouraged and urged us to continue to use our talents to free the healing energy of Christ, to grow in witnessing God’s mercy -- beginning in our own communities! She also urged us to step out of our comfort zones and welcome change. To help us understand what the Lord is asking of us, she had us look concretely at the future of the Congregation.

An interesting group activity had us examine four different Leadership styles -- Visionary, Relational, Practical, and Strategic – as we considered the challenges of God’s calls in a more global perspective.

It was a day rich with exchange of ideas and discussions. We worked together to formulate the next steps that each one of us could take in order to set free -- all the more -- the healing energy of Christ and to be Apostles of the Resurrection.

 

The Assembly ended with a Mass of celebration for our Jubilarians: sr. Clara’s 60th, sr. Maria Atorino’s 50th, and sr. Carmelina Di Bella’s 25th. All together, in a simple and solemn celebration, the Sisters renewed their vows and together we blessed the Lord for his faith and healing.

 

Perspectives on our Assembly …

Once again, as Associates, we participated in the Area Assembly with great joy. Preparing together with the community the presentation our Ministries here in Messina made us more aware of what we are and what we are living together. It also was very important for us to learn about the Ministries that are present in all of the communities.  We also discovered that in each of us there are “artistic” abilities of which we, ourselves, were not even aware.

Getting to know each other better through our small group activities at the tables was wonderful and it was also a positive way for us to grow as a community. The meetings that followed were truly engaging, above all during the moments when we were asked to participate actively. The use of our minds, hearts and hands helped us to reflect on our emotions and placed us in attentive focus that allowed a generous listening to the experiences of others. Maria and Nicola Gazzano

This year the Assembly had a special flavor, channeling a word that I continue to feel all the more dear to my heart: Family. It is perhaps a word that we take for granted, and yet it was quite new. I breathed in the beauty and the colors that the diversity of each one of us carries within and outside ourselves during our many services and Ministries.  I also confronted shadows that various people made me look at within myself. I saw how much God loves this family by continuing to support our desires, energies and struggles. I am thankful for the new understanding given to me that urges me to welcome, learn and look at God with admiration and faith, by way of our Mother Frances.  Roberta Sommaggio

During the Assembly, I felt as if we experienced a “guided visit” into the life of our Community, where Mother Frances’s Charism urges the Sisters and Associates to recognize and serve Christ in those who are poor and suffering.

 

Life can show itself to be solid like a large tree trunk and gentle and green like a new sprout. Both require care on the part of those who have direct responsibility, but the sap is the same: it circulates and nourishes these works only through loving relationships.

 

The moment that touched me most, and that granted me a way to interpret our life, was the idea “I CARE” with which Betania House summarized the presentation of their ministries. We can examine situations, see problems, identify difficulties, and write articles or even books: but what we need are only these two words to express an entire life offered because the hidden face of Christ has been recognized!  Sr. Tina Ventimiglia

 

We thank God for these days together which granted us new energy by opening our hearts and minds to the desire to continue discerning how and where to incarnate the Mother Frances’s Charism towards the Community of Life.

 

Published: July 23, 2015

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