Madrid (SPA). On 23 January  2021, about 60 Daughters of Mary Help of Christians from 6 to 35 years of profession, from  Mary Help of Christians Province (SPA), participated in the online formation day on the theme: “The personal encounter as a charismatic tool for personal and community growth”, organized by the Provincial Formation Commission.

The meeting was coordinated by Sr. Nieves Reboso, General Councilor for Formation, who began by asking the FMA some questions about their formative experience. She then invited us to become aware of the daily calls of life and the interior availability required to learn from all experiences, discovering that God shapes us in the image of Jesus at every moment of life.

Sister Nieves continued with the presentation of the theme, taking up the formation stages corresponding to the participants described in the Formation Plan of the FMA Institute “Rooted in the Covenant”. Her words helped to name the experiences and feelings experienced by each of us. The in-depth study of the personal encounter  helped to strengthen the certainty that it is a precious heritage that we received, which must be transmitted with responsibility to future generations.

In conclusion, the Councilor stressed that the encounter is a privileged element of formative accompaniment, which favors mutual sharing in the concreteness of community life. The interpersonal relationship that is established requires mutual commitment in building it.

Group reflection led to the identification and sharing of what we need to unlearn, learn, relearn: attitudes and methods that prevent conversation, aspects that must be rethought and assumed in the light of the proposed reflection, values that have been lost and have weakened the  charismatic experience of the encounter.

Towards the end of the meeting, three social presences of the SPA Province were presented: Association ValponascaFoundation Valsè, with the Barrio del Pilar Puzzle Project, and the presence of Sant Vicenc dels Horts of the  Mary Help of Christians Foundation. These experiences remind us that the option for the poorest is a criterion for discernment and pastoral renewal for all Salesian educational environments.

Sr. Nieves Reboso and the FMA of the Formation Commission helped the FMA who, thanks to the online connection, were able to participate also from mission places, to revive the personal experience of the encounter and to believe it is always possible, with faith and trust in mediations.

In the document on the Personal Encounter we read: “Today we feel how important it is to build fraternal relationships. This is the plan we need, that our Educating Communities are hungry for. A true and sincere fraternity that helps us to be reborn is at the basis of the experience of the encounter”.

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