THE ON-GOING FORMATION OF THE PERPETUALLY PROFESSED
(From the directives on formation in Religious Institutes, Congregation for Institutes of consecrated Life and Societies of Apostolic Life, 1990, no. 66-71)
66. “Throughout their entire life religious are to continue carefully their own spiritual, doctrinal, and practical formation, and superiors are to provide them with the resources and time to do this.” “Each religious institute therefore has the task of planning and realizing a program of permanent formation suitable for all its members. It should be a program which is not simply directed to the formation of the intellect, but also to that of the whole person, primarily in its spiritual mission, so that every religious can live his or her own consecration to God in all its fullness, and in keeping with the specific mission which the Church has confided to them.”
(From the paper presented to the 66thmeeting of Superior Generals in Rome in 2006 by Fr. Edward Mercieca S.J., tittled, “Present Challenges: Ways and Means that Superiors and Governing bodies of Religious Congregations may undertake”.)
The young adult:
From the search for an apostolic religious identity – to work done with love and peace.
After years of formation there comes a time for the first apostolic responsibilities. Frequently one feels empty handed: What to do? How can one begin and how can one go ahead? How can one honour his commitments in a proper way? Apostolate attracts, at last one is exercising fully his service to the world. However, indeed, it is disconcerting because one’s work does not always result in affective repercussions, team work has a cost; collaborating with the laity is a desired goal but it is not an easy task. Also it is disturbing not to know how to balance the apostolate, community life, prayer and rest. Work facilitates growth but it also shows one’s limitations: low self-esteem, complexes as well as problems in relating to others. Difficulties arise when one has to accept one’s talents and use them to serve others without entering into competition with others. Even at this adult age, one is still seeking to be a protagonist, to concentrate on appearances or on the approval of others. Deep down the young adult is searching for his own apostolic identity. Who am I now, working apostolically?