This morning the renewal course began in Cochabamba with the initial welcome of the Provincial Superior of Andean America, Graciela Francovig, on behalf of the Superior General. This new version is coordinated by Dayse Agretti FI, mistress of juniors; and the group is made up of 16 Daughters of Jesus from Bangladesh, Bolivia, Brazil, Colombia, Cuba, Spain, the Philippines, Italy, the Dominican Republic and Taiwan. “We, who by our vocation are for going and for dispersion, now have a moment for Congregation. We need Congregational spaces so that our dispersion may come from that union of hearts on which our Constitutions place so much emphasis,” affirmed Graciela Francovig FI, while at the same time recalling the objective stated by the General Plan of Formation: “An aid to deepen one’s vocation from the roots of the Gospel and to assume it once more from this stage of life, to give it to God with generosity and fidelity and to others with more simplicity, serenity and wisdom.”
On the other hand, the provincial superior invited them to prepare themselves and not impede the work that God wants to do in each one of them through his Spirit. “May it be a time that helps them cultivate interiority, an interiority that does not make us intimists but women of deep convictions which give birth to answers that today defy our world. May it be a time where the vocational experience lived up to this point may be relived such as to give thanks for it, and at the same time, regain the rationale for it.”
After this opening, the Jesuit Antonio Menacho SJ presided over the Eucharist and invited the Daughters of Jesus to recognize themselves as a group, community that experiences fraternity with the congregational body expressed in the sisters of Bolivia, as well as in the geographical and cultural diversity existing among them.
The group of the renewal course has chosen two sisters to form the communication team: Pola Mendoza and Pilar Brufal. From now on they will be in charge of transmitting what they will be experiencing during these two months.
WORDS FROM GRACIELA FRANCOVIG
Renewal Course Opening
Cochabamba, November 18, 2017
We all welcome one another to this Bolivian land that is receiving us for the Renewal Course which opens today, November 18, and ends on January 15.
How good it is to feel the Body! What a grace is the universal charism to which we were invited and that today we are enjoying with the presence of sisters sent to Bangladesh, Bolivia, Brazil, Colombia, Cuba, Spain, the Philippines, Italy, the Dominican Republic and Taiwan.
We, who by our vocation are for going and for dispersion, now have a moment for Congregation. We need Congregational spaces so that our dispersion may come from that union of hearts on which our Constitutions place so much emphasis.
You are being offered a good amount of time in a country different for most of you, to share, to deepen, to reflect, to read, to pray, to relive and recall the experiences lived up to this point. You are offered a time to be “fascinated” once more by your own vocation as Daughter of Jesus and the following of the Lord. You are offered a time to bring our sisters and brothers, the many to whom we are sent and who will not cease to be present in our midst.
The General Formation Plan, when it speaks of the renewal course, indicates its objective: “it is a help in order to deepen in our own vocation from the evangelical roots and to reassume it from this stage of life, in order to offer it to God more generously and faithfully, and to offer it to others with greater simplicity, serenity and wisdom.” (PGF 185)
This is what the Congregation wishes for you at this time, which in the Church will be of Advent and Christmas. But as it happens in all things in life: only that to which we open ourselves, so that it goes into the heart and permeates our inner being, acquires profound meaning. Therefore, the invitation is to BE AVAILABLE and NOT BE AN IMPEDIMENT to facilitate the work that God wants to do in you through His Spirit, through whom He gives you the course, the people who will be with you, work materials, this place, the others which you will visit like our houses in Bolivia, when you can pass by them.
May it be a time to help you CULTIVATE INTERIORITY. An interiority that does not make us intimists, but women of deep convictions from which spring the answers that today challenge our world. May it be a time to recall and relive the vocational experience lived up to this time and to give thanks for it; and at the same time to regain the rationale for it: foundations of faith, from the Word of God, theological and from our charism.
Sometimes I see that in our world we live a crisis of superficiality and an inflation of words, even spiritual. And from there comes the invitation to depth and wisdom, so that we may speak again of Jesus to others.
This welcome I give in the name of our Superior General, who is very happy about the realization of this course. And in her, we bring the whole Congregation, each of our provinces, the sisters and other people who have substituted for us in our works. May this be an opportunity to unite us all, from afar, with the “conviction that the greater the distance that separates us, the greater the union of hearts.” Isn’t it there where part of the allure of our vocation lies?
We ask for the company of Mary and Mother Candida. May they, as women and companions on the way, visit us at this time. And may they help us to live tenderness, simplicity and humility from the depths of our femininity such that they be expressions of life to offer women and men today.
Off to a good start!
Graciela Francovig F.I.
Provincial Andean America