The gathering of Redemptorist confreres from the United States, Mexico, and the English-speaking Caribbean under 55 years of age took place from August 29 to September 1, at the Casa Lago of the Mexican Episcopal Conference, located in Cuautitlán Izcalli, Mexico. Along with the attendees, the gathering started with the presence of Fr. Stephen Rehrauer, the Provincial Superior of Denver, Fr. José Guadalupe Nazarín Ramos, the Provincial Superior of Mexico, and the coordinator of the North American Conference of Redemptorists, Fr. Jack Kingsbury.
The confreres present belonged to different (vice)provinces: Extra-Patriam, Baltimore, Denver, and Mexico. The languages spoken by those present varied (Vietnamese, English, and Spanish), but this did not interfere with the atmosphere of fraternity and joy. As the hours went by, communication became closer and closer, which allowed the participants to start conversations that included learning each other’s languages. It was a truly joyful moment and a time of fraternal bonding among those participants.
The first day, Monday, August 29, was dedicated to the arrival of the confreres and the first fraternal sharing. The second day, Tuesday, August 30, was more on getting to know the participants through dynamics and the presentation of each of the Units. On the third day, Wednesday, August 31, we discussed in small groups with plenary sessions what drew each one of us to the Congregation of the Most Holy Redeemer. Finally, on Thursday, September 1, we reflected, in small groups based on the plenary sessions, on the visions and dreams for our Units because of the restructuring process we are living through.
Along with these activities, there were moments of prayer, Eucharistic celebrations, and daily Gaudeamus, which favoured, deepened, and consolidated the climate of fraternity. During these four days, the dynamics of the meeting allowed the confreres to get to know each other, both personally and as (vice)provinces.
At the end of the meeting, the confreres experienced the beautiful call from the Redeemer has been from different realities, but we continue to walk together on a common path. We are Redemptorists within a (vice)province, but open to our Conference and the entire world as missioners. Thanks be to God for having allowed us to have such a beautiful congregational gathering.
Agustín Cantú Drauaillet, CSsR.
North American Conference of Redemptorists