Bogotá (Colombia). From 28 June to 24 July 2021 in Bogotá, in the Provincial House of the Province of Our Lady of the Snow (CBN), eleven FMA temporary professed of the Provinces of the Interprovincial Conference of Bolivarian Nations (CINAB) lived the formative experience of the Second Novitiate.
The theme of the meeting was “The dynamism of fidelity”, in the light of the Gospel passage on the vine and the branches of the Gospel of John (Jn 15: 1-8).
The objective of this formative stage is the confrontation with the elements of the Identity of the Daughter of Mary Help of Christians, through the re-reading of the vocational journey in the light of the Word and of the Charism.
The experience was lived in an atmosphere of joy and fraternity, of simple and serene sharing of what each Sister built in the first years of Profession, in which every moment is lived with intensity and gratitude to God, and to the sisters of the Community.
The Temporary Professed Sisters worked on three nuclei:
1st nucleus: Identity. “I am the true vine, and my Father is the vine grower.”
Through the Lectio Divina of John’s passage, Fr. Hernán Cardona, a Salesian of Don Bosco, highlighted the importance of the Vine in the biblical context and presented the Eucharist as the source and summit of the life and mission of the FMA. Sr. Maria Eugenia Rodríguez, FMA, Coordinator of the Second Novitiate, presented the charismatic identity in the light of the Constitutions, with an invitation to review the journey undertaken in the first years of Profession and to deepen the characteristic features of the Daughter of Mary Help of Christians.
2nd Nucleus: Evangelical Counsels. “every branch that does bear fruit, he prunes so that it bears more fruit.”
In the 2nd nucleus, the Evangelical Councils were deepened in order to radically assume consecrated life. Sr. Gladys García, FMA, Novice Formator, presented the charismatic dimension of the vows in the Constitutions, underlining the following of Jesus chaste, poor, and obedient as the unifying principle of the response to the love of predilection of God who calls. Psychologist Ana Leonilde Martínez presented the psychological dimension through the confrontation with her own life, with the reality of the Consecration, and with the Beatitudes.
3rd nucleus: Prayer. “Whoever remains in me will bear much fruit”
The reflection of the 3rd nucleus was centered on the ‘being’ and ‘doing’ of the Daughter of Mary Help of Christians. Fr. Martín Sepúlvedam, of the Society of Saint Paul (SSP), proposed the theme of prayer as the foundation of Christian life, in the light of the Catechism of the Catholic Church. Sr. Emily Cruz, FMA, Assistant of the young women of the Period of Accompaniment and Guidance (PAG) and of the Postulants, shared the experience of filiality, which helps to recognize the presence of Mary in the FMA Institute and in the history of each one. Sr. Cecilia Camacho, Provincial of the CBN Province, presented the charismatic dimension of prayer and synodality, as a paradigm of community life, citing some traits of Mother Mazzarello’s educomunicative and synodal style.
The Spiritual Exercises lived at Casa Villa Maria were an opportunity to transform what was studied in depth in each nucleus into concrete commitments. Fr. Luis Bernardo Mur, SDB, accompanied the Temporary Professed in deepening the theme: “Religious Profession as a definitive response to the gift of God’s fidelity”, taking up some articles of Canon Law and the Constitutions, and highlighting the presence of Grace in the journey of the Church, the FMA Institute, and personal history.
The FMA Temporary Professed Sisters, grateful for the formative opportunity of the Second Novitiate, are committed to living and putting into practice what they have received, in order to be authentic Daughters of Mary Help of Christians rooted in Christ, happy to belong to Him and to live in community, walking together and seeking the good of young people and all those entrusted to them.