We dawned this day with the prayer that animated Mexico and after strengthening the spirit, we nourished the body.
The working day began with the presentation of the General Council’s Annual Report, its great work during these four years since the end of the assembly in Medellin in 2019. Miguelo, secretary general, apologised for the absence, known to all, of Luz Mery, secretary of formation, and the loss of Ángel Luis Ramos, secretary of economy, and how it was solved thanks to the economic commission that had been formed. The continuation and formation of the Delegations, which has helped the work of the Council and the animation of the Movement, stands out in this period.
We are presented with the more or less updated numbers of the Claretian laity, which are around 1570, it is indicated that it is very changeable and difficult to specify, we are present in 31 countries in 4 continents.
The presentation of the report is done by recalling the strategic lines approved in the assembly of Medellín. The five priority lines were:
Line 1.- Advance in the COMMONWEALTH OF GOODS and in the economic sustainability of the MSC;
Line 2.- Develop the Formation Plan, its dissemination and dynamisation;
Line 3.- To energise the PROMOTION OF CHARISM from our lay identity;
To increase our commitment to SOLIDARITY AND MISSION (Justice, Peace and Integrity of Creation) in coordination with the Claretian Family.
Line 5.- Maintain active COMMUNICATION at all levels and expand access in other languages.
In addition, the Medellin Assembly recommended progress on two other complementary, non-priority lines of work, if the Council had the opportunity to address them:
Line 6.- Consolidate the organisation of the Movement.
Line 7.- Advance in the maturity of the groups to acquire greater co-responsibility in the ambit of the Claretian family.
Miguelo, assisted by the delegates: Bernardeta Arbaiza, in Communication; Juan Carlos Díaz, in SOMI-JPIC; Isabel Gómez, in Claretian Family and Bruno La Hoz, in Vocational Promotion (PROVOCA), presented the work done in each of these lines.
After a short coffee break to regain strength, the assembly continued with the questions or comments from those present at the assembly on the Report presented. Special mention should be made of the intervention of Octavio, CMF, from Cameroon, who apologised for the fact that no laypersons were able to come because they could not get visas. He thanked the Council for its efforts to maintain greater and direct communication with the laity. He proposed that the next Assembly be held there.
The Regions were then presented. The most relevant data and news from these regions can be seen and read on the website.
Mariola Sosa introduced us to the Betica Region. At the end, we were presented with a “hatillo” with the Assembly poster made by people with disabilities and a small magnet which is an icon representing one of the 8 beatitudes.
Peter gives us the presentation of the Region of Nigeria in English, which makes us more aware of what it means to them to understand us. They are very grateful to be able to be here in this Assembly after 15 years, despite the adventure of being here, they have left their homes a week earlier to be here. They end their presentation with the hymn they have composed.
Carmen and Ely introduce Bolivia and also present us with a small handmade key ring.
There was a short time for questions and then it was time for lunch.
After the break and well fed we continued with the presentation of the regions and groups.
Just landed at the Assembly Maila and Carlos introduced us to the Caribbean region. Through a video narrated by Nancy they tell us that the Antilles Region, the Caribbean.
Miguelo briefly presented the region of Venezuela, where no one had been able to come to represent them; they had spent a four-year period with great difficulties due not only to the pandemic, but mainly to the situation the country was going through. Fortunately, they were able to hold their XII Assembly in August 2022 and to elect a new Regional Council.
The Peruvian laypeople get us up and make us sing and dance the song “Cómo corre un río” (How a river flows) before going on to present their “pre-region” situation.
The laity of the Region of Central America presented their region and the great achievement of having a presence in the 6 countries that form it with the new community that is in discernment in Costa Rica.
The laity of the Region of Colombia present the great work they are doing there and how it is at present.
Miguelo tells us about the situation in the Region of Brazil. The Council is in contact and a meeting is pending to decide who they are and what is going to be done.
We concluded the day with an emotional Eucharist in memory of our lay brothers and sisters who died during these four years 2019 to 2023. The Eucharist was presided over by the Bishop of Bilbao, Joseba Segura, who encouraged us to continue our work, making special reference to our brothers and sisters in Africa.