focus on our (Gerry and Marita) experience in interfaith training with Christians, Muslims and indigenous faith leaders and public school teachers in Kenya.
John Wheatland, spouse of Roxanne Hughes-Wheatland of the Washington, DC Affiliate Chapter, generously volunteered to take photos at MAC 2017 - a truly transformative event. Even if you were not able to come to Guatemala to participate, hopefully these photos will give you a sense of the beauty of the site and the spirit of the participants. Please go to the link below to see scores of photos
John mentioned that a few photos were taken before and after the conference showing sites in Guatemala City
MAC 2017, held at Casa de Retiros Verbo Encarnado in Guatemala was completed today, Sunday 11/12 with the recognition that this could well have been the most successful and important Conference in our 25+ year history. It is difficult to find the right words to characterize the - organizational skills, creative initiatives, dedication and spiritual insight that the Guatemala Planning Team utilized to put this together. All of us there (120 participants from 9 countries) are profoundly gratefully for the inspiration, challenge, sense of the Maryknoll family as one that we experienced. More will follow in the weeks ahead.
MAC 2017 starts this coming Thursday, November 9th. Counting commuters, 120 have registered for the Conference. About half of those have also signed up for one of the four Mission Trips.
The theme chosen by the Guatemalan Conference Committee (GCC) – Buen Vivir (Living in Harmony with All) - in itself brings hope and expectation for all of us. In every area - dedication to mission, level of creativity, spiritual insight and organizational acuity - the GCC has been exceptional.
This could very well be a pivotal moment for the Maryknoll Affiliates, for mission. If you will not be able to be with us, please prayer in solidarity for this special moment in our history.
Maryknoll Mission Immersion
Texas Rio Grande Valley – April 16- April 22, 2018
Are you trying to better understand the realities facing today's immigrants and refugees? If so, Maryknoll's Spring Immersion trip to the Rio Grande Valley may be the answer. This week long immersion experience led by Matt Rousso and Fr. Gerry Kelly, M.M. will put you in touch with the human faces behind the immigration debate and provide you with opportunities to appreciate their struggles, listen to their voices, and understand their daily realities.
Immersion Trip includes
A home base on the grounds of the Basilica of the National Shrine of Our Lady of San Juan del Valle, San Juan , TX
Estimated costs and travel particulars
Note: We can only accommodate 10 participants
First Name: _____________________Last Name: __________________Email:_______________________
Address: _____________________________________ City/State/Zipcode: _____________________________
Phone No: ________________________ Diocese: ______________________
__ I am A Deacon Send completed form/check
__ A Deacon’s Wife To: Matt Rousso
__ Involved in Parish/Diocesan Ministry 7730 Walmsley Ave
__ Fluent in Spanish (not a requirement) New Orleans, LA 70125
More Information? 504-866-8516 or 504-376-4142 (cell)
The Third Wave Mission Institute (Mission in the Third Wave of Globalization) met in San Antonio, TX on October 26 & 27. The Institute was formed to respond to the needs of the recent emergence of Christians involved in short-term mission and parish partnership efforts. Fr. Gerry Kelly MM heads up this initiative that includes 11 other board members from different dioceses and organizations throughout the country. Bob Short is the other Maryknoller on the board. See: https://thirdwaveofmission.org/
Astonishingly, it is estimated that several million people!! – from colleges, high schools and parishes go on short-term (averaging 10 days) immersion trips each year. Most of those are young and about 1.5 million are Catholics.
The primary focus of the Third Wave Mission Institute is to provide formative training for those going on these immersion trips and, more recently, to also provide debriefing sessions upon return. Both of these formative aspects have been minimal or completely missing in the past. Several times during the meeting, the Maryknoll Affiliates were mentioned as a key resource for future growth. More to come about this.
The November/December 2017 issue of NSFA will be out soon in digital and paper versions. This is an especially timely, evocative, provocative and moving issue, in that each of articles (all written by Affiliates) stands in strong counterpoint to the frightening unraveling that has been taking place in our country over the last 10 months. It is an amazingly (not using that word lightly) relevant well-written and vital issue for our times. Understandably, it is very difficult not to be jubilantly proud at how perceptively and straightforwardly these Affiliate authors have spoken out; and, how well the co-editors Paula and Mary have put this all together.
FOLLOWING THE NON-VIOLENT JESUS
A workshop presented by
Fr. John Dear, SJ
Monday, Oct. 30, 2017
9 am – 3 pm
Forum Room, Roger’s Building
(on the campus of the Maryknoll Sisters)
“A time is coming when men (sic) will go mad, and when they see someone who is not mad, they will attack him, saying, ‘You are mad; you are not like us.'” (St. Anthony the Great)
The Affiliate Book Group is reading Miguel De La Torre’s Trails of Hope & Terror (Testimonies of Immigration). It speaks of economic realities, family values, the politics of fear, myths about the immigration debate and includes emotional testimonies from many perspectives. It’s a poignant and critical topic in these times.
The sessions have been engaging and informative. The content, dynamics and personal investment of each member are in themselves revealing of an uncommon, if not counter cultural stance in 21st century North America. Some might say crazy-mad, even subversive. That might be a badge of honor.
Once the 4 pillars of spirituality, community, action and global vision become the operative starting place for making an argument, the discussion will inevitably be “tainted”...a very different value system. Odds are that few if any of these pillars surface in board rooms or in this Trump cabinet. The word “investment” therein is tied to capital and political gain, not to a conscious personal choice towards love.
Even in the ‘glory days’ 40 - 60 years ago when scores of young people were flocking into Maryknoll (and other religious, priestly and lay Church communities), to opt for the disenfranchised and poor was viewed as a questionable life choice, only for the few. I don't think that there is much question in our minds and hearts about the investment we are making.
Until yesterday, Sunday, there were two affiliate virtual chapters. The first formed has six members crossing three U.S. time zones and has met three times. The second is a contemplative virtual chapter that focuses on reflective conversation and prayer. Members from both these chapters have spoken very positively about how meaningful the experiences have been.
On Sunday, October 1st, a third, hybrid affiliate chapter entered the virtual Maryknoll Affiliate world. Approximately 15 members from three continents and as many countries – Kenya, Germany and the U.S. (crossing too many time zones to count) – held their first meeting.
This hybrid virtual chapter evolved from the creative vision and organizational acumen of Gerry and Marita Grudzen, connected to Maryknoll in several capacities for many years. Both have been involved in higher education, and there has been a particular focus in the area of interfaith – in spirituality, academics, trainings and personal investment. Gerry’s most recent book in this area is: Spirituality and Science: Greek, Judeo-Christian and Islamic Perspectives
I don’t think the Affiliate Board could have anticipated that virtual chapter could take such a far-reaching character when it was first proposed. It’s a very encouraging development for mission. Here’s their first meeting agenda:
October 1, 2017, 3:30-5:00pm (Kenyan Time)
Formation Process for the Affiliate over 12 months: What it will look like.
Five Themes: Affiliate Identity, Mission, Spirituality in Mission, Community and Prophetic Witness.
Emphasis on four pillars: Spirituality, Community, Global Vision and Action.
Small group discussion at each site (15”)
Then we go back to the big group and each person introduces themselves and shares something in response to the program. (25”)