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24.01.2024 01:03:58 960x read.
GHANA
FIRST SESSION OF FIC PROVINCIAL CHAPTER - GHANA PROVINCE. Day One – Monday, 22nd January, 2024.

FIRST SESSION OF FIC PROVINCIAL CHAPTER - GHANA PROVINCE

THEME: DEEPENING OUR IDENTITY AS FIC BROTHERS IN THE 21ST CENTURY.

 

Day One – Monday, 22nd January, 2024. 

Participants of the Chapter commenced the day with a Morning Prayer led by the Liturgy Committee at 7:00 AM.  The introduction to the prayer was a humble call on God to make the Brothers Servants of peace, love, forgiveness, and that we may be able to sow faith, hope, joy, light, etc, to people, as the prayer of St. Francis of Assisi encourages us all to do. The first reading taken from our Constitutions Article 6, enjoins the Brothers in their own way within the Church, to give value to their consecrated life through the Evangelical Counsels of religious obedience, poverty and celibate chastity.  In the Spirit of Jesus, we form a fraternal community and strife to be Brothers to one another and to all human kind.  

 

The Gospel reflection taken from Mt. 5:13-16, calls on us, Brothers to be salt of the earth and light to the world. Salt, when it loses its saltiness becomes nothing but to be thrown away and trampled underfoot. We must therefore endeavor to be salt and light to the people we minister to, particularly through our life styles; otherwise our calling as FIC will be tasteless especially in this era of dwindling vocations, and our lighted lamps put under the bushel basket instead of the lampstand. Let each Brother contribute his quota to ensure that the salt in our lives continues to be tasteful and keep its value, and our light to shine forth to the world. 

 

As part of the program, the participants used the morning section for a Recollection directed by the Chapter Moderator, Rev. Fr. Dominic Apee M. Afr. under the same theme; “Deepening Our Identity as FIC Brothers in the 21st Century”. He made a three-point presentation. The first part focused on the “FIC Brothers being Consecrated Men” using part of post Synodal Apostolic Exhortation from VITA CONSECRATA, of Pope St. John Paul II of 26th March, 1996. In the second and third parts, he termed that as a reminder to us, Brothers, the history of our own Congregation and charisms. 

In the first part he reflected on Consecrated life; the Icon of the Transfigured Christ. Consecrated life, as a gift to the Church, and he emphasized that “Consecrated life is placed at the very heart of the Church as a decisive element for her mission, since it makes us understand the intimate nature of the Christian vocation”. The Consecrated persons he said, make visible, by their consecration and total gift of self, the loving and saving presence of Christ, the Consecrated one of the Father, sent on mission. As consecrated persons, we leave everything behind to follow Christ for the sake of his Kingdom.  It is therefore the task of every consecrated person, he said, to contribute to Evangelization.                  

He touched on the Prophetic witness of Christ in the face of great challenges. Vatican II he said, recognizes in the consecrated person, an expression in Christian life; and by virtue of this primacy, nothing can be preferred to personal love for Christ and for the poor in whom he lives.  

 

He reflected on a brief life history of the FIC Brothers. The FIC Brothers he said, are a worldwide religious community within the Catholic church whose mission is the evangelization of the poor through the provision of Christian education, formation and teaching of the most neglected youth. Mgr Louis Rutten felt the need to address the physical, moral and religious needs of the roaming children on the streets of Maastricht. Our apostolate he said, should serve as a source of relief to countless people from poverty, destitution and illiteracy.

He concluded his reflection on our fraternal sharing as FIC. He enumerated a lot of good things that happen as FIC in this Province; a good relationship amongst brothers, a good sense of solidarity with one another, etc.  On the other hand, he also shared what he termed, less good things about our life as FIC, and he said they could be part of our challenges to address. He said there is sometimes the formation of cliques amongst us, i.e., smaller groups, and also unhealthy competitions can set in sometimes. Lack of vocations he said is one, but added that it might not be peculiar to only FIC. 

In looking forward to the future he said, as FIC we need to invest in our communities. He threw a challenging question to FIC Ghana Province as follows; “The FIC Congregation is an international one, but why does it appear to be a one-tribe community of Brothers in Ghana? Why is it that any other tribe joining the congregation does not keep long in our community? This he said is one of our challenges to address as a Province.                       

 

The last items for the day were sharing of Expectations of the chapter, as well as sharing of Joys and Worries of participants. 

Some of the expectations shared are as follows: 

- I expect that God will direct all of us and that we show respect for every one’s view.

- I expect that we delve deep into any concept of issue that comes up, we need to digest the issue, look at its characteristics or nature and recommend possible solutions. 

- I expect a successful Chapter that will come out with policies to move the Province forward. 

- The Holy Spirit should guide and direct our discussions and make it peaceful. 

Some of our shared Joys

- The is relative peace and unity among the Brothers in the Province.

- The apostolic zeal is still alive among Brothers.

- Brothers are willing to take up leadership roles.

- A greater awareness of self- reliance is created among Brothers.   

- The spiritual life of Brothers is enhanced.

- The PC is doing well in human development, etc 

Some of our shared Challenges

- The economic hardship is leading our communities to a lot of budgetary constraints.

- Sickness and deaths are worrying. 

- Dwindling vocations

- Self-sustainability of our apostolate is still a challenge. 

- Our apostolic ventures are stressful 

 - Poor maintenance culture in our communities. etc

The participants closed the day with a Eucharistic celebration officiated by the Moderator- 

Rev. Fr. Dominic Apee M. Afr. 

 

Compiled by: Br. Peter Claver Kuuniabom








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