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SSCC mission: challenges and resources (Enlarged General Council)

On Wednesday, 6 September, the Extended General Council focused on mission. The liturgy of the Eucharist and adoration was prepared by brothers and sisters from Chile, Peru, Paraguay and Mexico.

The day was dedicated to a priority theme for the Congregation: mission. Camille Sapu and Martin Königstein lead the day's work. They consider that the synthesis of the responses received from the communities around this theme is very rich with challenges of pastoral work, elements of our spirituality and charism and the pastoral conversion that the mission asks of us today. We brothers are sent by the Congregation as sscc in a world surrounded by challenges (individualism, lack of acceptance of the Church, thirst for God, divisions), also holiness is next door. We ask ourselves how we can respond today to our mission as SSCC in the society in which we live. In the synthesis we find concrete challenges: poverty, sects, teamwork, not all prepared for educational ministry, credibility, knowledge of the world and culture, learning languages, secularisation, care for the Common Home, etc. We also have tools as SSCC religious: personal and community prayer, we are restorative, living with the poor, zeal, family spirit, missionary ideal. Finally, the synthesis offers a dimension of personal transformation to live the missionary conversion: personal conversion, letting oneself be touched by reality, team work, balance between service and community life, prevention and abuse protocol and openness to internationality.

This is followed by a group work with this question: What are the priority features of the SSCC Mission today? Some elements come up: how to be useful to the Church, migration, rural places, attention to the most disadvantaged, making God's presence and love transparent, letting reality touch us (suffering, pain), closeness to the wounded, linking mission to the updated charism, relationship between the sender and the receiver that leads to making pastoral ministry concrete in life, awareness that religious life is mission.

We continue to deepen our understanding of mission through texts by Henri Nouwen (a new model of a Christian community leader) and Madeleine Delbrêl, an open-eyed mystic, a missionary "without a boat". In groups, the following question is answered: What is the main work of the inner man that prepares me for the SSCC Mission today? From the answers we draw elements to enrich our mission: relationship with others teaches us who we are, personal experience of vulnerability, Eucharist and adoration make us companions of the people, open door communities, letting ourselves be affected by reality, mission is going out of ourselves, etc. It is about being able to connect what we see of the Congregation in its smallness and the need to collaborate more with each other. We are talking about a type of service of authority that takes more care of the brothers and at the service of the mission and that, in some cases, can intervene more. We are in the Congregation at the service of a mission. We need to ask ourselves again and again who we are, questioning ourselves about our vulnerability. We need to love as Jesus loves, with a vulnerable heart. The people we meet show us how Jesus wants to love through us. The most difficult thing is for Jesus to love the brothers and sisters we live with through us, or to love our own vulnerability.

Thursday, 7 September, is an excursion day for the members of both councils with a visit to Lembang and a Carmelite monastery.

Link to the photo gallery: https://acortar.link/GZD6WI