Meetings Address Issues Facing the USA and Divine Providence Province

June 22-23, 2016 eight Guanellian priests participated in the Annual Assembly of Confreres in the U.S.A. The Assembly is an opportune time to be together for spiritual renewal and evaluations of our prayer life, brotherhood and missionary activities. Some of the topics that were discussed were as follows: situations of our parish in Rhode Island-future and options, strengthening our presence in Michigan and the Legacy Project campaign, preparing our new Indian missionaries who will be coming to the U.S., and facing some challenging situations like lack of local vocations and advancing age of confreres.
After the Assembly, the Provincial Council had their Plenary Meeting from June 27-30. Similar to the Assembly, the Plenary Council meeting is a moment where we review our life and mission but in a wider scope, that is, within the Province, that includes USA, India, Vietnam and the Philippines. Decisions also that are important for the Province and respective communities and individual confreres were finalized to ensure the good harmony of the different realities we are in. Revised formation programs for aspirants and a new program for candidates to final vows were shared. Several new possible projects for the poor were proposed during the meeting such as helping aging persons with disabilities together with their aging parents, taking over the administration of a mission school for the poor, better organizing a program of distribution of medicines for the poor, caring for children with HIV, etc. These are just but a few items that were discussed during the Plenary Council Meeting. Although there are challenges and difficulties that we face, (and there will always be) we continue to hope and dream. Quoting Fr. Silvio de Nard’s words from his report to the Assembly, he said “Our future is in God’s hands, first of all. Our job is to give Him a hand in doing His divine job, together with our lay people. We will have a lot to do among the patients, the local faithful, the local parishes, the local nursing homes, hospitals and prisons.
Our charism of charity should be open to the needs of our time here and now.
God wants it; people want it; we want it.
Let us be courageous and united. Let us dream big!”

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