Montevideo (Uruguay). From 17 to 21 April 2023, the meeting of the ECOSAM Social Communication Coordination Team of the Americas was held in Montevideo, at the “Santa Rafaela María Center of Spirituality”, in presence after a break due to the pandemic.

The event involved the Interprovincial Conferences of the American continent, convoking the President Provincials of the Conferences, the five Coordinators for Social Communication, and the General Councilor of the Sector of the Institute of the Daughters of Mary Help of Christians, Sr. Maria Ausilia De Siena.

Also present were the Provincial, Sr. Angeles Grassi, and the Coordinator, Sr. Maria Baffundo, of the host Province of Immaculate Conception (URU), who gave the participants a splendid welcome, in the land of the first missionary expedition of the FMA in 1877.

The priority objective of the meeting was the Strategic Planning of ECOSAM, as well as the appointment of the new Coordinator and the new Coordination Team for the three-year period 2023-2025.

Each day, work was started by a well-prepared moment of prayer. Especially interesting were the presentations of Alexandre Le Voci Sayad, on the theme “The global challenge. Education and communication for the contemporary world,” and of the Professor and researcher Erick R. Torrico Villanueva,

of the Simón Bolivar Andina University (UASB), who explored the theme “(Re)humanizing communication: a decolonial path”, which is also the title of the book published in 2022. He recalled the history that marked Latin America, emphasizing the need to recover the humanizing sense of communication.

The outgoing ECOSAM Coordinator, Sr. Márcia Koffermann, presented her recent doctoral thesis in Communication entitled: “Educommunication for integral formation in the Infodemic Society. An analysis of the Brazilian Salesian Network of Schools”.

Sr. Maria Ausilia De Siena manifested the joy of sharing the journey of the Team, which resumed the meetings in a significant place, witnessing the courage of six very young FMA, the first missionaries who, facing a long and difficult journey, with a life of poverty and work, managed to enculturate the Salesian charism in this land. The Councilor presented the guidelines of the Sector and highlighted the great sensitivity for communication and networking of the American Sisters, encouraging them to bet once again on the strength of the whole, with a view to a dynamic journey supported by the logic of little steps.

“Working together often forces us to take a step back, to lose something immediately. The results are long-term, because every great thing takes time to be accomplished, presupposes a broad view, and above all, the awareness that it is the Lord who guides us and calls us to great things. If we look on high, even the small steps in the immediate future will be simpler and more comforting.”

The Coordinators representing the Conference were able to share experiences related to Educommunication and its processes for mutual enrichment.

A day of fraternity allowed a brief visit to the historic center of the city and, above all, to Villa Colón, considered the “Mornese of America”, for an exciting journey through the places “sanctified” by the first missionaries, culminating in prayer before the miraculous image of the Help of Christians with the smiling Child, blessed by Don Bosco. The day ended with Holy Mass celebrated in the chapel by the Provincial Fr. Alfonso Bauer, Salesian of Don Bosco, also attended by the Sisters of the provincial community residing there.

The following days engaged the participants in the work of evaluating and revising the ECOSAM regulation and the Strategic Plan of the Team, in line with the choices of General Chapter XXIV.

After the meeting with the Provincials, Sr. Ausilia announced the new ECOSAM coordinator, Sr. Doris Yajaira Jaimes Sanabria, of the Province of Our Lady of the Snows (CBN) and, interpreting everyone’s sentiments, she thanked Sr. Marcia for her dedication and enthusiasm in the coordination task carried out and all the outgoing Coordinators.

Each participant expressed great appreciation for the experience lived in a real atmosphere of family, of study, of growth, and thanked the General Councilor, Sr. Ausilia De Siena, for her very close and familiar style, her attentive listening, and her timely words.

Thanks to the outgoing ECOSAM team:

CIB         Sr. Marcia Kofferman, coordinatrice.
CICSAL   Sr. Susana Diaz
CIMAC   Sr. Carolina Erazo Alvarado
CINAB    Sr. Doris Yajaira Jaimes Sanabria
NAC       Sr. Cynthia Salas

Fruitful mission to the new team:

CINAB    Sr. Doris Yajaira Jaimes Sanabria, coordinator
CIB         Sr. Maike Loes
CICSAL   Sr. Susana Billordo
CIMAC   Sr. Gabriela Trinidad Murguía Aguilar
NAC        Sr. Cynthia Salas

Foto: FlickrFMA


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