A Reflection After the CG XVII


My journey through the General Congregation

It was like a journey of the three magi following the star in search of the new born King. Just like them, we came from different directions, different realities, different languages and cultures yet we were made one by our common goal - buscando el provecho de los projimos!

In the journey I brought what I have to be offered to The Lord - the love for Jesus, love for the congregation, the commitment to be part of the process, the willing spirit, the openness of heart, the readiness to do His will, my unworthiness as a person and the limitation of the language.

 The journey had never been that easy. I had to struggle with my personal poverty such as the poverty of expressing myself well in the group discussions, of understanding the content of what is being shared by the group and of following the conversations. But I wanted to reach the STAR and so I tried to rise above my personal poverty with the grace of the Spirit. My personal poverty never paralyzed me. I did what i was supposed to do....read the texts several times, translate my thoughts in spanish and share whatever i was inspired to prepare. In my personal assessment, I tried to prepare myself well for personal prayer, group reflections and assemblies.

 In the same journey I have gained so much. I feel an inch of growth in the following attitudes and dispositions: openness, Listening, Gratitude, Respect, Discernment, Trust and confidence, interior freedom, sense of belonging to the body congregation, closeness and sensitivity to the realities where we are, appreciation and acceptance of our lights and shadows and courage to face and name our weaknesses.

 I shall continue walking in my journey equipped with many learnings: to question my way of following Christ, poor and Humble; to exercise compassion in the mission; to work with others without thinking highly of myself; to continue empowering the lay and support them in their formation; to go and search for the most possible way to bring others to Christ and to meet the young people wherever they maybe. I learned courage to follow the voice of the Spirit even if what I say is misunderstood and not accepted by many.

 All throughout the journey, The Lord had been weaving in my heart his deepest words of assurance and consolation...do not be afraid for I am with you. Indeed, all throughout my GC journey The Lord had been with me. The Lord had been with us ....helping us search for His will with courage in the midst of disagreements...making us sensitive to the voice of the Spirit...helping us to let go of our personal perspectives and follow what we sense the Spirit wants us to say or to present in the group.

 I am happy to be part of this search for the star - buscando el provecho de Los projimos. My contribution is just little but I have given my best for the success of the general congregation. Like the magi, all I could do after reaching the STAR is to bow down and worship God who made Himself little and fragile. I shall go back to my everyday life with much hope, consolation and joy knowing that we have found the STAR that would be guiding us for the next 6 years and that we were all one in our search for the will of God.

 Ithank my constant companion, Mary, who had been protecting me and guiding me in this journey. I felt her mantle covering me everyday so that I could make this journey with sense of direction and sense of fulfillment.

 With deep gratitude I go back to my daily ordinary life. I feel renewed in spirit and willing to go towards the direction He wants me to go as what the magi did.

Emelinda Falsis, FI





Reflections from Thailand

The community of Mae Hong Son, Thailand (Evelyn, Anny and Elvie) asked me to give them the 8-day retreat. Never in my mind that I will go to Thailand.  Lo and behold, the surprise! Three grand feelings that captured  the experience:

GRATEFUL: The experience is bountiful, what with the 3 passionate sisters! The  Retreat began and ended beyond my expectations, simply because it's not my work. The place, The Seven Fountains Jesuit Spirituality Center is superb-  good facilities, abundant Thai and non-Thai dishes, warm and welcoming environ...with big labyrinth,library, aircon room and little kitchen aside from the big dining hall. Got lots of time to read , pray and do soulwork.
TOUCHED: Their mission is impressive, "all out from their hearts and guts", working with their lay bosses and colleagues, with other NGOs, and the refugees themselves, doing training work and accompaniment, The camp is far away in the jungle, crossing rivers, bumpy and sometimes slippery roads, seemingly endless forest (in camp 2)...The refugees are receptive, hoping against hope at times, endlessly waiting for new life in a new land or back to their own perhaps. The sisters' collaboration wih other NGOs makes refugees' lives lived with certain degree of security and dignity now and in the future thru education, health care, vocational training, personal accompaniment...
       Community life is "not perfect but best":   working, praying, recreating,  together and alone, with friends/ acquaintances;  arguing, asserting, "spacing",  but always communicating in the end.  Human limitations tolerated and accepted...  I agree!!! Indeed!!!
CHALLENGED: Where am I in this particular experience of hard reality? It is a question which I would have to wrestle with inside from this moment onwards...
Thank you Eve, Elvie, Anny for allowing me to trod your path, interiorly and externally.God is great indeed!