Marists join 5,000 for closure of Year of Consecrated Life
Around 30 brothers took part in a four-day event, including a papal audience, which marks the closure of the Church’s Year of Consecrated Life.
Brothers from the General House and 15 others from the five Marist provinces of Europe attended the Vatican’s ‘Consecrated Life in Communion: International Encounter’ from Jan. 28 – Feb. 2.
The gathering included over 5,000 consecrated from around the world of five religious forms of life. They are ordo virginum, cloistered monastic life, religious institute of apostolic life/ monastic life/ societies of apostolic life, secular institutes, and new Institutes/‘new forms’.
The Institute of the Marist Brothers is a form of religious Institute of Apostolic life.
“I think what is fascinating is that it’s not just brothers and sisters in the traditional manner and this will challenge our paradigm of what consecrated life is,” said Brother Tony Leon of the secretariat Brothers Today. “We’re in an exciting period of discovering new ways of expressing consecrated life as baptized members of the Church today and as married men and women or as
religious, identifying with particular charisms, seeking union with God through apostolic and/or contemplative service,” he told the general house press office on Jan. 28.
The gathering started on Friday morning with an introduction by Cardinal João Braz de Aviz, Prefect of the Congregation or Institutes of Consecrated Life and Societies of Apostolic Life, followed by talks led by various religious.
On Saturday and Sunday, the participants were divided into five different locations across Rome, according to their form of consecrated life, to assist seminars.
Then on Feb. 1, all of the consecrated gathered at Paul VI Hall for a panel discussion on the topic ‘Consecrated today in the Church and in the World. Provoked by the Gospel’ and an audience with Pope Francis.
Superior General, Brother Emili Turú, was among the panel, moderated by Father Federico Lombardi, head of the Holy See Press Office.
The evening closed with a concert titled ‘On the Trail of Beauty’ directed by Monsignor Marco Frisina of the Vatican’s Pastoral Worship Center.
“I think we need to be more concise in our reflection of consecrated life, as baptized members of the Church today, lived in a communal form or marital form,” affirmed Br Tony. “It would be a more accurate reflection of the identity of consecrated in the Church today.”