Rome (Italy). From 11 to 13 February 2022 in Ariccia (Rome), 11 FMA with Temporary vows and 16 FMA with perpetual vows up to 10 years of profession of the RMC Preprovince and of the Generalate had a formation encounter at Divine Master House of Spirituality. Present were Sr. María del Carmen Canales, Superior of the Preprovince of Mary Mother of the Church (RMC); Sr. Anna Maria Trotti, Vicar; and Sr. Teresa de Jesús Rubio García, Animator of Mother Angela Vespa Community.
During these days, the Temporary FMA reflected on generativity in themselves, in the Community, and in the mission, while the perpetual FMA, on the theme “Evangelical poverty“.
The encounter began with an introductory Celebration, followed by a greeting from Sr. Maria del Carmen, who invited them to read the themes from the perspective of the 24th General Chapter and, looking at the great vitality that the Charism has had in these 150 years, to commit to keeping it alive in daily life.
On 12 February the Temporary Professed had an intense day of formation on generativity starting from the Constitutions of the FMA Institute, taking advantage of this aspect in the articles concerning the Vows, the life of prayer, fraternal life, mission, and formation.
Subsequently, Sr. Maria Ko, FMA, Professor of Sacred Scripture at the Pontifical Faculty of Educational Sciences “Auxilium” in Rome, gave a lectio on the passage from the Gospel of Mark 6: 30-44, emphasizing the question of Jesus “How many loaves do you have? Go and see” (Mk 6:38).
The young FMA then welcomed Sr. Nilza Fatima de Moraes, General Councilor for Formation, who took up the Gospel verse saying:
“This Gospel passage is a real challenge for us: how to be bread, how to be balm for the many wounds of our day? Instead of getting rid of this ‘annoyance’, Jesus will also ask the disciples to take charge of it: ‘You give them something to eat’.
Jesus asks us to share in His compassion with what we are, with our real poverties. What matters is not what we have or what we can give, but how much we are willing to get involved. For Jesus, our little is not a problem, which left to itself or held back out of fear, can become misery. If given to the prayer and blessing of Christ, to the breadth of His hands that know how to break and distribute, it becomes multiplied and shared wealth”.
In the afternoon, the FMA had the opportunity to spend a pleasant time of presentation, sharing, and listening with Sr. Nilza.
“The 24th General Chapter challenges the mission in a generative key” was another theme presented to the Temporary Professed by Sr. Maria del Carmen Canales, who gave a pastoral reading of the Acts of the Chapter.
The perpetual FMA, who in the morning spent time with Sr. Maria Ko on the theme “A widow threw two small coins” with a lectio on the passages of Mk 12: 41-44 and Lk 21: 1-4, in the afternoon they reread the experience of some significant FMA in the history of the Institute and sought the criteria for living poverty in the concreteness of today.
On the last day, after the Sunday Eucharistic celebration, Sr. María Teresa Espinosa, Novice Mistress of the International Novitiate Mary Help of Christians of Castel Gandolfo (Rome), spoke to the Temporary Professed about generativity with themselves and in the Community. The Perpetually Professed, on the other hand, shared the articles of the Constitutions regarding poverty, listening to their own experience, their own reality, and reflecting on the indispensable elements of this vow.
For the young FMA these were fruitful days of prayer, personal reflection, discussion, and sharing, enlivened by moments of joyful and spontaneous recreation. A Temporary Professed shares her impressions:
“I felt challenged by Jesus’ question, ‘How many loaves do you have? Go and see.’ To live and grow in generativity, it is important to listen to and meditate on the Word of God, which helps me every day to look inside myself to find how many loaves I have to give. Furthermore, I had the joy of meeting other new sisters, of being together with them to share and create new relationships. I sincerely thank you for this formative opportunity”.