Today a small break in looking at the letters of St. Eugene. The past two days (and still ongoing) the Oblates of Mary Immaculate are holding an international Congress on the Oblate Charism in Context. And with modern technology I have been blessed in being able to watch major presentations live via streaming on the web from Rome in the morning and then from San Antonio in the afternoon.
I have taken copious notes and at times was unable to write fast enough, as person after person spoke about living the charism of Eugene de Mazenod in their particular country, what the mission looked like there in the past and now in the present and all with ideas and questions of how we move forward.
Yesterday morning began with a short talk from Archbishop Joseph Carbollo, a Franciscan who spoke to us about needing to ‘re-evangelize our own vocations’. He was followed by Oblates who shared their stories and their histories. I wonder if they realize that in their sharing they were in fact, helping to re-evangelize me.
This Congress is a way of helping me to do that – not that my vocation was dying or becoming old or tired – but we all need nourishment in our lives. It is a continuous journey for us all and we do not do it alone – it is in community that we feed each other.
Already I have pages with notes and half finished quotes that I must look at for there are gems that will continue to feed me in the days and weeks and months ahead. Small pieces that I can reflect on and realize how they are not just a part of the journey for some priests and brothers but also for sisters and laity – we all walk together.
I joined the congress today in silent anticipation and budding joy. I was not mistaken. The coming together is in itself a gift. Then add to that – getting to know more of about and able to appreciate so many others. It is all a grace and I think the Spirit must be working very hard on my re-evangelization.
I am at this moment filled with gratitude, passion and hope and that’s a pretty awesome way to start the day!
And that was just the beginning of today. I am being re-evangelized