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Turn to Jesus (Article)

Shoulder to Shoulder, Looking to the Future
Legionaries of Christ and Regnum Christi leadership hold meetings in Rome


Rome – From September 17-21, leaders of the Legion of Christ and the Regnum Christi consecrated men and women from around the world met to share experiences and discuss the next steps in the renewal process of the Regnum Christi movement. Most of the meetings were presided by the Papal Delegate to the Legion, Cardinal Velasio De Paolis, along with his personal advisors. While it has already been the practice of the Legion to hold meetings with the territorial directors each September, this is the first year that the governing bodies of the consecrated men and women have participated as distinct entities. 

The purpose of the meetings was for the directors to pray and reflect together, and to discuss operative decisions for the Legion and Regnum Christi in the next year. 

In order to promote an atmosphere of attentiveness to the Holy Spirit, each day began with adoration and community prayer, and ended with Mass.

Cardinal De Paolis began the meetings on the 17th by framing the current situation of Regnum Christi and the Church.

“This meeting is an important encounter,” he said, “because we have gathered here representatives of the Legion and Regnum Christi and, among them, of the consecrated men and women. […] It is a meeting that takes place at the beginning of the new year, at the beginning of the third year of the term of the papal delegate
and his councilors, and at a time of particular reflection on the part of the Church, which is celebrating the Synod of Bishops on the New Evangelization the Year of the Faith.”

The cardinal stressed the need for interior renewal – conversion of heart and soundness in one’s own vocation and surrender to Christ. He mentioned that the path to renewal so far has focused on this aspect, and he therefore hopes that it will continue in the right direction of “deepening and commitment.”  In this light, Cardinal De Paolis invited Legionaries and consecrated members to follow the Holy Father’s invitation to reflect on Christ as the meaning of our life, and give special attention to the study and meditation of the Catechism.

Fr. Álvaro Corcuera LC, general director of the Legion, outlined the renewal process to date, followed by vicar general Fr. Sylvester Heereman LC, who presented the main areas where the Legion and Regnum Christi will focus their efforts in this coming year: drive and enthusiasm for Christ, mission and vocation, collaboration and coordination of all members who form the family of Regnum Christi, vocational work, assignment of personnel (seeking to cover the most pressing needs while also taking personal situations into account), economic sustainability, communication, and transparency. Gloria Rodríguez and Jorge López, also added to this presentation.

On the 18th, Fr. Sylvester Heereman, Jorge López, Gloria Rodríguez, and general councilor Luly Fernández presented steps that each branch has decided to take in order to follow the path marked out by the papal delegate.

In the afternoon, Cardinal De Paolis wanted to hear input from everyone present about their experience of the charism of Regnum Christi, and everyone shared experiences and personal reflections for more than 2 hours. The cardinal was pleased to see the convergence of elements that emerged, indicating a common charism: an experience of the personal love of Jesus Christ, Christ-centeredness, zeal for the salvation of souls, the desire to extend Christ’s kingdom in the world and in society, and the need to respond to God’s
love and to lead others to experience that love. All of these elements will be taken into account in the drafting of the new “common rule or charter.”

On the 19th, each member of the general government met with their respective territorial directors to analyze topics of interior life and the formation process, weaving vocational work into evangelization, and how to assign personnel in a way that will build fraternal life in community.

On the 20th, Cardinal De Paolis, accompanied by Fr. Gianfranco Ghirlanda SJ, Fr. Agostino Montan CSI, and Mons. Brian Farrell LC, announced that a commission will be formed for the completion of the draft of the charter which will be presented to all members of Regnum Christi for their reflection. Each territorial director then gave a brief report on the status of his or her territory, and the ways the guidance received from the Church has been applied.

On the 21st, Cardinal De Paolis again presided at the meetings. He left ample time for questions and answers - some regarding the duties of the councilors, and others about the diversity of vocations within the family of Regnum Christi. Fr. Juan José Arrieta LC, Gloria Rodríguez, and Jorge López outlined the steps that have been taken towards a more solid formation and better accompaniment of religious and consecrated members, especially in the early years of apostolate.

Cardinal De Paolis gave some concluding reflections and said a closing Mass. Afterwards, everyone came together for a dinner at the General Directorate to unite as a family in thanksgiving to God.






















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