VII Encounter of the Vincentian Family in Latin America
(March 17-22, 2015 – Guatemala)
Vincentian Missionaries, Witnesses of the Faith and Charity
The Vincentian charism in Latin America has provided us with the means to continue to respond to the different realities and the different forms of poverty that are found in this part of the world. The Vincentian Family attempts to make that charism effective and affective and realizes that in order to do so there is a need to understand and to grow in our awareness of being members of a family and also a need to unite our efforts in common projects of evangelization and service on behalf of those men and women who are impoverished as well as in projects of social and structural transformation. The Latin American Council of the Vincentian Family is one of the entities entrusted with the task of making those ideals a reality. Therefore, as we conclude this VII Encounter of FAVILA in Guatemala (a meeting in which 135 people from 23 different countries gathered together), a meeting that was developed in an atmosphere of profound reflection and formation, an atmosphere of prayer and fraternal communion, an atmosphere in which we celebrated our life in the liturgy, we now want to affirm the proposal of Father Gregory Gay, the animator of the Vincentian Family … the proposal in which we are exhorted to live and minister in collaboration with one another. In light of all of this we feel the need to make visible the fruit of this gathering and therefore we present the following lines of action that will guide our activity during the next three years.
LINES OF ACTION
- To animate the National Councils of the Vincentian Family;
- To follow-up on the commitments acquired during the 2015 Encounter of FAVILA.
For the National Councils of the Vincentian Family
- To implement strategies that promote knowledge of the theory of systemic change and then to look for ways to apply this theory to specific projects of the Vincentian Family … projects that are done collaboratively;
- To share with the members of the Vincentian Family in each country the richness that was received during the Encounter and whose content is synthesized in the theme of the gathering, Vincentian Missionaries, Witnesses of the Faith and Charity.
For all the members of the Vincentian Family
- To enrich the formation of each member of the Vincentian Family in order to strengthen the sense of belong to this family and the experience of Vincentian spirituality. This should be done by integrating the orientation that is proposed by the National Councils of the Vincentian Family into the various formation processes.
Conclusion As we come to the conclusion of this gathering we want to express our gratitude to God for having provided us with the opportunity to participate in this encounter and we thank all those who through their prayers and accompaniment have sustained our work. We also thank the team of FAVILA for all their work in making this gathering possible. Finally, we express our gratitude to all those persons who have collaborated in this matter, especially the Daughters of Charity of the Central American Province.
We exhort all the members of the Vincentian Family to enter into the dynamic of these Lines of Action and to begin to prepare now, with enthusiasm and hope, for your participation in the next gathering of FAVILA (2018). We hope to have even more participants at our next encounter.
As we walk together as a Vincentian Family we entrust our journey to Our Lady of the Miraculous Medal, to Saint Vincent de Paul, to Saint Louise de Marillac and to Blessed Frederic Ozanam.
Guatemala City, Guatemala March 21, 2015
Translated: Charles T. Plock, CM