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21/7/2010 - Poland - III Meeting of the Commission for the Project for Europe
(ANS – Czestochowa) – Between 16 and 19 July the Commission for the Project for Europe (PE) met in Czestochowa, guests of the local Salesian community and of the “Sowa” Youth Centre. The specific agenda for this third meeting was preparation for the meeting of European Provincials to be held in Rome between 26 and 28 November.

Following a pattern of six-monthly meetings, after the meeting last January in Fatima, the Commission for the Project for Europe meeting at Czestochowa showed their desire to entrust the future of Europe to Mary.

The first item was the preparation for the meeting of Provincials. After a first meeting in 2004, this will be the third –and the second after the PE was launched in January 2009 – indicating the desire to involve the Provincials more closely.

First of all the aims of the meeting of Provincials were agreed: to assess the progress already made with the Project: its reception; involvement and acceptance of the motives for it, the difficulties and challenges, the first achievements; at the same time to establish the next steps to be taken. In particular it was pointed out how important it was to keep interest and involvement in it alive, given that in fact there is still little awareness of what it is and what it is trying to do. The real challenge is not just providing information but especially encouraging involvement.

A programme for the three days of the meeting was then considered. It will be submitted  to the Rector Major and his Council. One topic of reflection considered by the Commission was  how “to redesign the Salesian presences in the European Provinces” focusing on the systematic application of the principles of significance, re-organisation and re-location.

The Commission noted that in the first two years of the PE, attention had be especially concentrated on the first two areas: the re-vitalisation from within and the  re-location of the presences. In this regard it was observed that there had been a good response on the part of all the other Provinces of the Congregation with some notable successes  such as for example an Indian Rector in Holland, an Indian Provincial in Hungary  and four Vietnamese doing practical training in France-South Belgium. However, for the second two-year period 2011-2012  more systematic attention needed to be given to the third area of the Project, “Europe: mission territory.”

The occasion of the meeting of the Commission also enabled them to spend some time with the Provincial of Wroclaw, Fr Alfred Leja, and the local Salesian community.  The Commission also took part in the Sunday Mass in the Salesian parish  during which Fr Francesco Cereda, Councillor for Formation gave the homily. They also went on pilgrimage to  Sanctuary of the Black Madonna of Jasna Gora, taking part in the  prayers and Mass. They also visited the community of the novitiate at Kopiec. After the meeting of the European novices at the Salesian places in May, held at the same time as that of the Salesian Bishops, the interest and the involvement of the novices and formation guides in the PE was clear to see.

Published 21/07/2010

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