Our ongoing dialogue about the present…
“Fulfill your ministry with all the affection of your heart” – De La Salle
Our conversations this morning led us to reflect on love, empathy and compassion as powerful tools for making change. If we are to leave a legacy for coming generations, we know we must carry forward the priorities which have emerged from our time together. 56% of today’s Lasallians are female partners. That percentage will continue to increase in the coming years and calls us to stay focused on our mission. Our voices must not only be included in the ongoing dialogue, but heard as a loud and clear message of what it means to truly be together by association.
Circular 461 notes the contribution of Lasallian women in the Mission and specifically speaks to our participation as ‘essential’. And, Circular 470 encourages the promotion of new leadership among Brothers and Lasallians who can boldly and creatively respond to the Church of the 21st century; ‘We cannot sit idly and remain on the sideline. There is an urgent need to find new roadmaps that encourage creativity and innovation in the pursuit of the common good.’
There was a powerful “YES” in this room from a body of women representing various corners of the globe. Yes, we must be bold! Yes, we must be creative! Yes, we must accept the challenge of co-responsibility! Yes, we must reshape leadership frameworks! Yes, we must have an obligation to action! Yes, we must create pathways for young women – the future of the Mission depends on it! In the words of Malala Yousafzai, “I raise up my voice – not so that I can shout, but so those without a voice can be heard.”
The afternoon also offered a bus trip to the Aukland Museum. We had an opportunity to walk, discover more about New Zealand’s culture, take a group photo and enjoy our lunch.
Upon return, we were offered an ‘open mic’ time to share reflections about our learnings so far and hopes for the future. Words expressed overflowed with gratitude, understanding, hope and vision.
The evening meal was accompanied by entertainment from a Sweet Adeline quartet and during dessert, we were treated to a variety of dances from the Pacific region. There were girls and women of all ages included in the dances and they were clothed in their traditional dress from each region.
At the end of the performance, our Brothers were invited to the center of the room to dance as well.
We’re certain that the reason the internet connection went down was because of all the ‘views’ from the postings of those wiggles!
A family that plays together – stays together! It was a wonderful close to our day.