Rome, July 16, 2018
Greetings of peace and joy from the President, Sr. Carmen Sammut msola, from the Executive Secretary, Sr. Patricia Murray ibvm, from the Executive Board and from all the staff working in the offices of the UISG in Rome.
In this time marked by the newness and fullness of Pentecost I have the honour and the pleasure to announce and convoke the XXI Plenary Assembly of the UISG that will take place in Rome, at the International Center, Ergife Palace Hotel, from May 6th to May 10th 2019.
The theme of the 2019 Plenary Assembly is: “Sowers of Prophetic Hope” – “For I know well the plans I have in mind for you, says the LORD, plans to give you a future full of hope”. (Jer 29: 11)
The choice of this theme is the result of a process of reflection, sharing and collaboration that involved a variety of people: members and delegates of the UISG constellations, conferences of religious women and men, Vatican dicasteries and other ecclesial and non ecclesial bodies. It is also the fruit of an attentive look at today’s world with its needs and calls, from the theological and ecclesial perspective of Consecrated Life with its identity and mission.
The Plenary Assembly of 2016, that had as its theme “Weaving global solidarity for life”, was the starting point of this three-years journey, which has been enriched by many important events, both internal and external to UISG. These have also contributed to shaping the focus of the next Plenary Assembly:
- The UISG activities include in particular:
*Seminars and webinars on: Communication, Formation, Migrants, Trafficking, Interculturality, Environmental Care, etc.
*Seminars and consultations on Canon Law for congregations on issues that have become increasingly urgent: reorganization, numerical decrease and mergers, resignations, constitutions, community life, authority and delegation in consecrated life, etc.
*The Council of Delegates, held in Manila in November 2017.
- Participation in many continental meetings of religious and in assemblies of Conferences of Religious
- The documents of the Magisterium of the Church, in particular, the Encyclical “Laudato si” (2015) and the Apostolic Exhortation “Gaudete et exsultate” (2018).
- The CICLSAL documents and activities that preceded and accompanied the celebration of the Year for Consecrated Life (2015): Rejoice; Keep Watch; Contemplate and Announce; “New wine for new wineskins: From the Second Vatican Council, consecrated life and challenges”; the International Symposium on the economic management of Congregations, November 2016; the International Congresses on Consecrated Life, March and May 2018.
- The preparation for the Synod on Youth, 2018.
In addition, the reality of trafficking in human beings, the challenge of interculturality in the world and within religious congregations, the need for interreligious dialogue, the many situations of violence and conflict, the urgency of caring for our planet, the new guidelines for the protection of children and vulnerable adults are a call for us to be sowers of prophetic hope for our world.
The 2016 Plenary Assembly was preceded by a workshop on Canon Law for the Superiors General gathered in Rome. The success of this initiative has encouraged us to offer again in 2019 a series of thematic workshops that will take place in the days before and after the Plenary Assembly. These will enable the Superiors General coming to Rome from all over the world to participate in other initiatives which offer opportunity for formation and interchange.
We will offer the following workshops:
May 2-3, 2019
- New approaches to the Institutional Care of Children
- Developing policies and procedures for the protection of children and vulnerable adults
- Communication at the Service of Mission
May 13-14, 2019
- Canon Law for Congregational Leaders
- Communication at the Service of Mission
The Council of Delegates of the UISG which will be both elective and deliberative will be held on May 13th and 14th, 2019.
In the near future we will send a second letter containing additional details and practical information, including how to register for the various events.
I strongly encourage your participation in the Plenary Assembly which is of great importance for the life of the Union, and which is an “organ of consultation, animation and reflection at the international level of the Superiors General” (UISG Statutes, 10) at the service of Consecrated Life in the world.
I pray for the fullness of the gifts of the Spirit of God, who alone can lead us on the paths of communion and solidarity, for you and your Congregation.
Sr Carmen Sammut, msola