Rome (Italy). On 3 and 4 May 2022, Sr. Ruth del Pilar Mora, Councilor of the Missions Sector of the Institute of the Daughters of Mary Help of Christians, with the Sector Collaborators, convoked and met online the Province Coordinators of the Mission ad gentes of Asia, Oceania, Africa (May 3) and of America and Europe (May 4). About 50 Coordinators participated in the meeting.
In the opening greeting, the Councilor for the Missions emphasized that the first service requested by God is to be and to go, to be a church that goes out, as Easter suggests: to be women who have listened to, met, and proclaimed the Risen One. “Being ‘women of the apron’ who in the rubble, know how to find ways to build and move forward with resilience, frankness, and missionary daring.”
The purpose of the meeting was to understand the meaning and commitment of the Province Coordinator of the Mission ad gentes. The Sector presented the essential points of the Vademecum of the profile of the Coordinator of the Mission ad gentes, drawn up in the six-year period 2014-2020, indicating how the presence of a Coordinator for the mission ad gentes, FMA or lay person engaged in the Province and within the Provincial Team, contribute to bringing out the missionary dimension of the Institute in all Sectors, reviving the missionary spirit in the Educating Communities.
The Coordinator of the Missions ad gentes has a missionary heart and has the task of reinvigorating the fire of the Da mihi animas cetera tolle and of the mandate, ‘I entrust them to you’, that is missionary passion in the heart of each FMA, of every person met, with attention to the great contemporary challenges: human mobility, the migratory phenomenon, interreligious and ecumenical dialogue, interculturality, education to globalization, integral ecology, missionary youth volunteering.
As Pope Francis exhorts, “The Mission … is not a part of my life or an ornament that I can take off; it is not an appendix or a moment among many of my existence. It is something that I cannot eradicate from my being if I do not want to destroy myself. I am a mission on this earth, and that is why I am in this world. We must recognize ourselves as being branded by this mission of illuminating, blessing, vivifying, relieving, healing, liberating” (Cf Evangelii Gaudium, n. 273). “The mission is a passion for Jesus but, at the same time, it is a passion for his people” (EG n. 268).
Sr. Ruth and the Sector Collaborators urged the participating Coordinators to network with all missionary realities: with the Pontifical Mission Societies and Unions (PMS, PMS), with Foundations, Institutions, and Associations engaged in interreligious and ecumenical dialogue and in missionary cooperation, etc. present in the Dioceses, in the Nations, in the different Continents, interacting and socializing good practices, and with them the great good that is realized everywhere in the world and in the missionary realities of the Daughters of Mary Help of Christians.
The meetings were enlivened by the active, engaging, and passionate presence of the Sisters who made the mission ad gentes, the proclamation of Jesus to the ends of the earth, the main motivation for their vocational choice.
In conclusion, Sr. Ruth quoted Circular no. 1017 of Mother Cazzuola, who encourages “to live the celebration of the 150th anniversary of the foundation of the Institute, uniting ourselves with the desire to go forward with a big and generous heart (cf. L47; 12), as Mother Mazzarello asks of us”.