Aarón Gutierrez, CM, Assistant General, describes a recent meeting of the Executive Committee of CLAPVI…

The Internal Seminary of CLAPVI is located near the village of Aguacate, an indigenous village in Guatemala … an ideal place for prayer and reflection (and also a very welcoming place).  I believe that all of us who participated in the meeting of the Executive Committee of CLAPVI enjoyed and are grateful for the hospitality that was shown to us.  On the evening of November 28th, we had the joy of sharing with the nine members of the Interprovincial Internal Seminary and the two Juan’s who are the directors.  This hospitality was seen an invitation to make our meeting a psalm of thanksgiving for being able to join together as brothers.  We retired to our rooms and prepared for the dialogue that was to take place the following day.

We initiated our gathering on the 29th with the celebration of the Eucharist.  The readings reminded us of the “prophetic mission” of CLAPVI and called us to renew ourselves in that prophetic calling and to deepen our understanding so as to never lose sight of it.

As we began the first session we called upon God to strengthen our faith and to provide us with insight so that we might confront the great challenges that are presented to us as we engage in the evangelization process throughout Latin America.  Reports were give about previous meetings, more specifically, about the meeting that was held in Chile (October 23-30) which dealt with the formation of superiors of distinct provinces.  This formation session was directed by Father Corpus Delgado (Province of Zaragoza).  Even though there were some comments about the lack of participation in these encounters, nevertheless, those present began to select themes for encounters during the coming years, for example, co-responsibility in the missionary endeavor and administration and pastoral planning.  It was also decided that the next Assembly of CLAPVI will be held in Brazil (2017) and there the themes will be further defined.

We were reminded that from January 29th-February 28th another session will be held at the “School of Vincentian Spirituality” (Curitiba).  Father Pedro Guillen coordinated our reflection on the commitments that CLAPVI made during the time of the General Assembly that was held in Chicago: [1] on-going participation in the Mission of Cuba and the creation of a common project for the mission in Tefe (Brazil), [2] the creation of an Internal Seminary on the level of CLAPVI (consideration is also to be given to the possibility of creating a theologate on the level of CLAPVI), [3] the creation of a Reflection Group around the Lines of Action of the General Assembly of 2016, [4] the participation of CLAPVI in projects that defend and protect Amazonia and in the Panamazonian Network (REPAM) and [5] the development of material for personal and community reflection with regard to putting into practice the Good News of Mercy (this last matter is not one of the commitments that was made during the General Assembly).

Other matters were also dealt with: the theme of the XVI Ordinary Assembly of CLAPVI (the 400th anniversary of the Vincentian charism: pastoral conversion in Latin America and the Caribbean) … this Assembly will take place in Brazil, October 22-28 2017.  We also discussed the importance of strengthening the formation program for formators which will take place from June 17th – July 29th, 2018.

After visiting some of the significant places of the martyrs of El Salvador (Bishop Oscar Arnulfo Romero and the Jesuit martyrs at UCA) we concluded our meeting praying (in solidarity with the Province of Ecuador) for Father John Prager, CM and his speedy recovery.

We extend our gratitude to the members of the Central American Province and especially to the members of the Internal Seminary for their kind and gracious hospitality.

Translated: Charles T. Plock, CM