Divine Word Missionaries

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SVD Formation

PANAM Guadalajara (MEX)
6th gathering of the formators

Thomas Malipurathu, SVD

The 6th gathering of the formators of the PANAM Zone took place in Guadalajara (MEX) from July 4 to 15. The venue of the meeting was our formation house (Filosofado – Postulantado SVD) located in suburban Guadalajara. The event had three parts. The first part consisted in getting to know each other and getting to know the actual situation of formation in the various provinces and regions of the Zone. This was accomplished by the presentation of brief reports by the participants. The second part was dedicated to the ongoing formation of the participating formators. The topic that was taken up for consideration during the three days of sessions was “Challenges of Modern World to Formation and the Tools for Helping the Formation Process.” An experienced parish priest from the Archdiocese of Guadalajara gave the initial input. The third part of the meeting was set apart for discussing the outstanding issues in the field of formation in the Zone. The Generalate Secretary for Formation and Education, Thomas Malipurathu, joined the group for this part. In his intervention he gave an overall view of formation in the Society and then explained the background of the latest formation document published by the Generalate entitled: “Re-imagining the Pathways of Our Common Vocational Journey: Some Orientations.” Subsequently the floor broke into small groups to discuss the possibilities of implementing the recommendations of the document. Following that, the meeting took up for consideration some of the common concerns of formation in the PANAM Zone. The Zonal Coordinator Gary Riebe-Estrella gave the necessary orientation for this effort. In his talk Gary spoke about the general climate of formation in the Zone. The Guadalajara part of the meeting concluded with a Eucharistic Celebration in the evening on 14 July in which a good number of local friends of the SVD participated. The Eucharist, presided over by the Generalate Secretary for Formation, was followed by a shared meal for which the dishes were provided by the families who attended. The following day the whole group traveled by bus to Mexico City. The concluding act of the formators’ meeting was scheduled to take place in the renowned Marian shrine of Guadalupe. The crowning moment was the concelebrated Eucharistic celebration at the Basilica of Our Lady of Guadalupe. The Zonal Coordinator was the chief celebrant and the homilist. Participating in it were also, in addition to the participants of the formators’ gathering, the Provincial Superiors of MEX, CHI, ARS, ARE, COL and the Regional Superior of BOL, who were in town for another meeting. Later on the whole group proceeded to the Casa Central and had dinner with the members of the provincialate community.

The organizer of the meeting was Nicolàs Espinosa, Area Coordinator for Formation in the PANAM Zone. He was ably assisted by the local hosts Victor Morales, Sylvester Rodrigues (Provincial Treasurer) and John Ledwidge (Superior Delegate), along with the confreres of the formation house in Guadalajara. Carlos Salcedo, Provincial Superior of MEX, was always present to oversee the arrangements.