Date: 03 Nov 2015
On the weekend of October 16th-18th 2015, about forty Religious men and women from about twenty different congregations gathered at Marianella in Dublin to celebrate and share their experiences of Religious Life in the 21st Century. This year’s theme of the annual conference was “Flourishing Together: Religious Life in a Global Context – Keep Watch”.
At the heart of this conference is the way that religious sisters, brothers and priests seek to make Christ present in the world, especially through their witness of Religious Life; very much inspired by Pope Francis’ theme of “Wake up the World”.
Our four novices who attended – David, Stanislaus, Colins and Douglas – made a presentation on how they as Presentation Brothers are ‘waking up the world’ and flourishing together in religious life.
Br. Barry Noel, Director of Novices, who accompanied the novices, highlights the value of such a gathering of young religious in formation today:
“The large group present indicates that there is a relevance of Religious Life in today’s world. Young people – and not so young – are responding to God’s call in all parts of the world. The internationality and universality of the group brings to the forefront the richness in diversity at present, as increasingly our world is shifting into more inter-cultural and multi-cultural integration.”
Indeed, the opportunity for the novices to meet and share with each other as they journey together in formation was an invaluable aspect of the conference.
The weekend activities included prayer and reflection, talks, workshops, liturgy and devotional prayer, along with time for recreation. Each of the days had a Keynote speaker, including Myles O’Reilly, S.J, Fr. John Walsh, O.P, and Noelle Corscadden, IBVM. Bishop Eamon Walsh also spoke, before celebrating the closing Mass.
Apart from new insights and rich experience of the weekend, each novice present took away a prayer pal, who they will pray for over the next year as companions on the journey.