“We wish to propose to the Institute to dedicate a year in which we take up again with strength and enthusiasm the theme of Marist vocations, from the perspective of a renewed vocational culture”. With these words of Brother Superior General, Ernesto Sánchez Barba, he presented the Year of Marist Vocations, which began on Friday, May 20, 2022 and will last until June 6, 2023, two significant dates linked to our founder, St. Marcellin Champagnat.
Marists Europe has supported this initiative from the beginning and will do so at all times. In our region, this Year of Marist Vocations will be celebrated more strongly in the next school year 2022-2023. However, from the first Friday, May 20, when this Marist project begins, we joined the international opening event, which was held through three platforms: Zoom, Facebook and YouTube.
In this regard, there is a guide, coming from the Secretariat ‘Brothers Today’, to celebrate the Year of Marist Vocations from May 20, 2022. The idea was to have a uniform celebration throughout the Institute, thus reinforcing the sense of being a global family. This guide can be used by communities, fraternities, groups, associations, pastoral, educational and similar services.
“We understand that each context has its particularity; therefore, feel free to adapt this guide to your own reality,” they comment. The guide itself and the rest of the information about the Year of Marist Vocations is available here.
“We wish to offer our witness and visibility to the new generations. We want to accompany young people to reflect on their own vocation and also to make known the possible ways of living Champagnat’s charism in our days,” added Brother Ernesto, who encouraged the different regions, such as the MRE, to reflect and make a plan to live this year as a global Marist family, seeking to strengthen the Marist identity and charism.
In this sense, Marists Europe facilitates the availability to the different provinces that compose it, of the materials generated by the Institute for the dissemination of this issue. Among the objectives of this work is to motivate changes or reflections for improvement, along vocational lines, of initiatives that are already being carried out; to create or relaunch activities, meetings or vocational structures that can be preserved; and to organize specific experiential moments for the Year of Marist Vocations.
With regard to the start of this celebratory year, the Marist Region of Europe maintains this ongoing collaboration with the Institute and, in general, is supporting the four fundamental actions with which this Year of Marist Vocations is beginning, which are as follows:
1) Joining the international online event on May 20 and two ways of participation are proposed: individual connection, each one from the place where he/she is; or community connection, in a simple meeting to watch it together and then comment on it.
2) Two specific morning prayers, developed on the occasion of this new Year of Vocations (May 20 and June 20, 2022).
3) A celebratory material, sent from the Brothers Today Team of the Institute, for a prayer in cloister, community or group.
4) A weekly inspirational video, starting May 23, 2022, called “Ignículus” (which means “spark of life”) where Brothers and Laity will share what made them become Marists.