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Marist Formation in Mexico

11/10/2010: Mexico

Dear Marist lay people and brothers, we are pleased to be able to share with you this life experience, even if it began well before, after much work by the base team, following the personal invitation addressed to each one of us. We hope that this document will help each of you feel something of the richness experienced by those who dared to say « yes, I accept to take advantage of this opportunity». During this time, we were united in heart despite the distance because, among other things, we have had a better perspective of the ones we love most in order to come closer to them, in living the inner life of our being and loving one another in community. The reflection in depth was without doubt an excellent opportunity for coming to know ourselves, evaluate ourselves and grow in self esteem. During these weeks we experienced different sentiments and emotions, which have even kept on resounding with certain of us in the depths of their being. We found ourselves before one another, naked, without masks ... Certain ones have come to fear that they cannot recognize themselves, perhaps because they had forgotten who they were, or they had never looked at themselves. Those experiences have motivated our personal, professional and spiritual lives, in allowing us to be impregnated with the Marist world, but especially, they have given us the opportunity to become more aware of our essence, our reactions, our sentiments and our actions .., as one of us declared : « I am trying to see God’s face in each of my colleagues. »As the days passed, we felt ourselves more a true community because the smiles and praises were numerous. When we attended the talks, we took advantage of them without knowing when we would have another opportunity of getting to know so much about the Marist brothers and of sharing with them; so much and so well, that the time spent seemed to us inestimable. Faith gives us the strength and courage to unite us in the presence of our heavenly Father. Certain ones said that they had had a very intense interior rapport with God and with the Good Mother through the singing, prayer, meals, and walks in the gardens; one of us had never felt God’s presence in his life, but after this experience, he was able to discover it, in feeling each day he was better at the times of prayer. FORMING MYSELF was an opportunity in our lives for telling God: « I love you ». Like the Blessed Virgin Mary, model of hope, faith and humility, we share the mission of Champagnat to see the children and youth of our community, especially the least favoured, being evangelised by our example. It has been important to know that the work of Saint Marcellin fills so many hearts which share with us the idea of a better life, always accompanied by Jesus and the Good Mother.Knowing the brothers and lay Marists who live the spirituality of our founder simply, has convinced us that the Marist mission has a future. At one moment one of us said: « We are here to give life and hope to our children, to accompany them and guide them in their journey. » Another continued: « I want to choose this style of life so beautiful and full of examples to apply it to daily life, in my school, with my colleagues, my pupils, my family, in my other work and where I may be. » As lay Marists, FORMING MYSELF has been very important, we have discovered the beauty and the importance of our work, even if it requires a greater commitment of each of us forming the community and society in general, in order to keep burning the flame of hope. We know in advance that it is hard work and that sometimes it demands a great sacrifice without any visible and immediate recompense, because we are aware of the reality in which we are immersed... Each chooses to fulfill his role with humility, simplicity and modesty. Today we dare to say that this opportunity God has offered us is a turning point in our lives, a before and an after, a now that requires greater preparation, since our eyes are opened on a reality which cries out and is becoming alarming. Finally, we affirm that thanks to Our Lord, the blessed Virgin Mary, Father Marcellin Champagnat and, of course, Brother Basilio, today we make a choice of this Marist spirituality.

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