From 11-13 February 2011, a formation course for the leaders of ecclesial groups was held at the Centre of spirituality of St. Gabriel (TE) organized by the Passionist lay movement of Friends of Jesus Crucified and by Fr. Fernando Taccone (PIET). Also present were the national Assistant P. Alberto Pierangioli, the President Piera Lucci and about 60 people from various confraternities. The course was very intense but equally interesting, and was a continuation of last year’s meeting during which we were trained about why we need to be concerned about others and how to become “the servants of God and of our brothers and sisters”.
The purpose of this year’s meeting was to prepare the guides to have an Evangelical Missionary consciousness so that our movement would not simply be a prayer group, but a true ecclesial movement. The means of achieving this is collaboration: in groups, among various groups and with national leaders. This is a common objective to be achieved and the guarantee of the success of the movement.
Collaboration, explains Fr. Fernando, is founded on two certainties: working for a common purpose described in the Statutes and awareness that the result of individuals affects the result of other people. On this point, the moderator was very focused explaining to the various coordinators the present difficulties in their confraternities and giving valuable advice and practical help to reorganize those in crisis.
Above all Fr. Fernando has taught us these days to have a positive attitude towards ourselves and towards others; keep our eyes fixed on the good Shepherd to see things positively even in adverse situations that arise. This offers resilience, something important in the formation of leaders, which consists in the energy and the ability to react, to go forward without surrendering, despite difficulties. To achieve this, the leader needs spiritual direction.
Being responsible is one of the ways to use the gift of oneself: the leader after having matured in his own identity, his charism, can be open to his brothers and sisters in order to listen to their needs, to help them and especially to confirm them.
Also this retreat, like the previous one, has been praised and deemed essential by all participants, not only for training but for exchanging ideas, experiences and expectations and for the sense of communion that was experienced. At the end of the course in the afternoon of Sunday, February 13, there was a meeting of the national coordinators and Assistant coordinators of the confraternities, with some assistants, for a more in-depth exchange on the reality of the confraternity: positive aspects and difficulties in the journey toward collaboration and mutual encouragement. We concluded at around 6:00 PM to the satisfaction of all participants.