Letter to the members of the AFJM
Via Nomentana, Rome
Rome-Murcia 19th October, 2015
Dear AFJM all around the world,
We are happy to communicate with you as we begin a new moment in the history of the AFJM; we wish to coordinate from a lay perspective, the mission of bringing St-Claudine’s charism everywhere and thus sowing the values of goodness and forgiveness so necessary today.
On 12th and 13th October 2015, we had the opportunity to share with all the religious who participated in the General Conference in Rome, our projects for a future full of hope and marked by bonds of union among all the AFJM groups.
It has been very good to feel the general welcome, listening and commitment; it shows that we, religious and laity, can walk “closely united”, in trust, collaboration and sharing of common vital spaces.
The history of the AFJM began with the beatification of St-Claudine. Looking at this history, we notice that 20 years have passed since the official recognition of the Association at the 1995 General Chapter of the Congregation. The AFJM is now more mature, it has grown; as we take a new step, we feel much gratitude for the sisters who have been animating us from the beginning.
Our present is rich in people (we are more than 1437 members throughout the world) and experiences; we need to live this present with enthusiasm in order to be able to embrace our future with great hope. We humbly offer you our service to guide and help the groups and all those who would need us.
It is in the frame of this hope that we share with you some aspects that we wish to develop – and we would like the list to be even longer:
- To be close to the youth: motivation, help, collaboration with the volunteer program of the J.M. Congregation.
- To care for the groups, to know their needs and their reality.
- To encourage in freedom, the formation of new groups.
- To prepare some topics that we will send you at the beginning of each “natural” year in order to unify dates since the calendars are different in the different hemispheres.
- To organize meetings, retreats, assemblies, common places.
- To strengthen the bonds between religious and laity.
- To search for joint moments of prayer and actions in the line of solidarity.
- To work for a good structure and organization of the AFJM.
- To see to the economic aspect, creating a way of saving money that would help for the trips and other needs of the members.
- To give an impulse to the AFJM in the occasion of the bicentenary of the JM Congregation.
- To update the Manual “Leaven, Salt and Light” through the formation of a mixed commission of religious and lay people.
- To elaborate a “Manual of Initiation” for the individuals who show interest and would like to know the AFJM.
- To help the lay people become aware of the importance of their mission in the world, take their responsibility in humility and be open to all types or people.
- To be involved in the formation of the laity using new technology (virtual libraries, Web, blog, Bulletins, etc.).
All this will be possible only with the collaboration of you all, members of the AFJM because you are the soul that animates the vital spaces where you dwell. We are only small grains of sand but together, we can form a big mountain, a strong and solid mountain and thus collaborate in the building up of a better world. We have “a common mission lived in many different ways but with only one and the same spirit”. And we feel true gratitude for all the religious who accompany us on our journey.
We are at your service. Please feel free to share with us your suggestions and needs, anything that we should take into account for a better coordination of the AFJM, in response to its own requests. Our e-mail address is firstname.lastname@example.org
Together with this letter, we are sending you the new Statutes including the modifications approved by the 2013 General Chapter, and a summary of the General Conference 2015 held in Rome.
Wherever you may be in the world, we wish you courage so that the AFJM be a sign of St-Claudine’s charism.
How good God is!
Sr M.Elisabeth Ides RJM and Consuelo Mengual