PROVINCE OF SPAIN – GABRIELITE SHARED MISSION – 2019/2020 An intense year of formation

GABRIELITE SHARED MISSION.

As every year, the Province of Spain began the 2019-20 academic year with renewed enthusiasm. Following the programme of the MCG Formation Team, the institutional training for collaborators and associates began.

The aim of the training for the collaborators of all the educational centres started three years ago is to offer the people who work with the Brothers a theoretical and experiential training that enables them to know and identify with the pedagogical style and the spiritual baggage of the Institution so that they can continue the educational mission according to the same spirit that has animated the Brothers of Saint Gabriel for the last three centuries.

In previous years we presented the Shared Mission, the identity of our Institution, the origin of our mission, our founder and we celebrated being an educational community sharing, from our vocation and history, the Gabrielite Mission, a whole art in which each one develops his vocation. The 2019-20 academic year was dedicated to the history of the Brothers in the 19th century and we highlighted the figure of Gabriel Deshayes.

With the collaborators responsible for the leadership animation, in the 2019-20 academic year, we delved into the tradition of the Brothers of Saint Gabriel to draw inspiration from what founds and nourishes the Gabrielite educational community. To do so, we turned to the source of the Circulars of the Superiors General, which revealed to us the most characteristic features of a Gabrielite community: simplicity and family spirit. The aim was to become aware of and take responsibility for producing a style of Catholic school and, at the same time, of Gabrielite school.

With the associates, in the formation of the Deepening Group, composed mostly of teachers from Catalonia and Madrid-La Aguilera and Brothers, we kept in mind the message of the 26th General Chapter: “May the Rule of Life become: food for prayer, object of study, bond of communion, instrument of discernment, source of challenges”; and on the occasion of the re-reading of the Rule that the Congregation has initiated to adapt it better to the reality, we presented and brought closer the beautiful Rule of Life of the Brothers of St. Gabriel.

The associates of the AGMONT (Catalonia) and Madrid-La Aguilera Montfortian Family groups –in which the life of faith and baptismal commitment are encouraged, as well as the promotion of human, social and Christian formation within the framework of Montfortian spirituality– devoted the meetings of September, October and November 2019 to the Gospel of Saint Luke: General Vision of the Gospel and the themes of women and discipleship. In the January 2020 meeting, the theme of conversion was presented, taking the conversion of St. Paul as a reference. The February 2020 meeting was dedicated to solidarity and poverty, taking as a reference Jesus in the Gospel, Montfort, Gabriel Deshayes and Mother Teresa of Calcutta.

And it was also proposed, for the year 2020-21, following the recommendations of the Charter of the Montfort Gabrielite Associates –in which all associate members are invited to consecrate themselves to Jesus through Mary, according to the method of Saint Louis Marie de Montfort– to devote the sessions to a preparation and training for consecration.

In the joint formation of Brothers and Lay people, during the weekend of March 7 and 8, we addressed the theme of Justice, Peace and the Integrity of Creation, from its ethical, theological, ecological and educational foundations. We then discussed practical and realistic questions with the aim of proposing and sharing, among all of us, projects for our centres. We have added to the training beautiful moments of conviviality.

The academic year was abruptly interrupted due to the coronavirus pandemic, which prevented us from completing the entire year. But this did not prevent us from sitting back, we placed ourselves in the hands of Providence and the Formation Team spent the rest of the course studying the renewal of our Institutional Formation Plan, both for collaborators and associates, following the indications of the last meeting of the International Commission of the Partnership.

In addition, we started a space for emotional and spiritual attention, Áncora SG, directed to all the collaborators of the centres –a service provided by a volunteer team of teachers and gabrielite brothers and coordinated from the Pastoral area of the Titularity Team– to better cope with the management of emotions and feelings, to help to meditate, relax tensions and to make a journey together from our spiritual aspirations.

Faced with the sadness, pain and despair of so many people affected by the disease or who lost their loved ones, victims of COVID-19, without being able to accompany them or hold a funeral ceremony, the Brothers community of La Aguilera-Aranda de Duero (Burgos) came up with a good initiative. With the idea of offering a message of consolation, closeness, solidarity and hope, they celebrated two Eucharists online from their chapel, broadcast on Aranda TV, where they remembered and prayed for the deceased. From Easter Sunday onwards, there were uninterrupted Sunday broadcasts of the Eucharists, which succeeded in uniting us all in prayer and consolation at such difficult times.

During this academic year 2020-21 we continue to work on the preparation of the themes proposed by the IPC, translating and adapting them to our reality. Through our bimonthly online magazine INFO-Gabrielite we offer training articles for our associates and we are reporting on the work developed in our educational centres. We have also scheduled two online meetings for members, open to collaborators who wish to join us, on 20 February and 17 April, with the following topics that we will send you in advance together with a reflection sheet to be shared among all of you:

  1. Montfort and the cross: remaining serene in the midst of difficulties, according to the book by José Luis Sandoval.
  2. Marie-Louise TRICHET: Who are you?, according to the work of Sister Chantal Rabier.

These two themes seemed very appropriate to us. Who better than Montfort can propose strategies to deal with the crosses that life presents to us?

And the second is motivated by the celebration of the 300th anniversary of the arrival of Marie Louise in Saint Laurent in 1720, a good time to get to know her personality and her spiritual journey, first with Montfort, then alone after her death.

We are sure it will be a wonderful experience for everyone!

Formation Team of the MCG of the Province of Spain

Collaborators training-MadriCollaborators’ training-Sant Adrià

Collaborators’ training Catalonia-The Educational Mission, an Art of which you are a part

Leaders Training- Viladecans

Leaders Training-Madrid

Catalonia – Formation-Associates-Profunding- Reading of the Rule of Life

Madrid – Formation-Associates-Profunding- Reading of the Rule of Life

Barcelona – AGMONT Formation Meeting

Barcelona – AGMONT Formation Meeting

Associate Group Meeting-Madrid-La Aguilera

Joint formation Brothers and Laity-JPIC

Joint Formation Brothers and Laity-JPIC

Reflection Space-Áncora-SG

Eucharist broadcast from the community of La Aguilera during the Pandemic period

Associates-Profunding-Reading of the Commitment of Adhesion to the Shared Mission