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Schoenstatt
Apostolic Movement

Pentecost Congress 2022. What is it about?

By: Sr. M. Nilza Silva

Sr. M. Nilza Silva interviews Fr. Henrich Walter (Germany) and Sr. M. Cacilda Becker (Brazil),who are the International Coordinators of the Schoenstatt Movement, about the implications of the Pentecost Congress. In June 2022 the Congress will take place in Schoenstatt, where Schoenstatt leaders from all over the world will meet.

What is the Pentecost Congress?

Sr. M. Cacilda: It is a meeting of delegates from all the countries where Schoenstatt has a certain presence.

What contributions are expected to make to society, to the Church and to the Movement?

P. Walter: First, the Congress is a platform for information and communication within the Movement.

The idea is to elaborate a common response on how and through what God’s providence is guiding Schoenstatt in this time. We would like to express Schoenstatt’s message in a renewed way in the face of the current challenges presented to us by the Church and society.

How often does the Pentecost Congress take place?

Sr. M. Cacilda: At the last Pentecost Congress (2015), an interval of five years was established. Therefore, it was planned for the year 2020, but could not be held due to the pandemic. Now it is planned for June 8 – 12, 2022..

Will it be on-site, online or hybrid?

P. Walter: The Congress will be held exclusively on-site, at the request of the leaders of the participating countries.  The moments of prayer, Holy Masses and talks will be broadcast live via YouTube and SchoenstattTV.

What could you say is the goal of this particular Congress?

Sr. M. Cacilda: We hope for a consensus in the midst of cultural and national differences, in order to concretize Schoenstatt’s central task and mission for this moment.

How do you plan to achieve this goal?

P. Walter: The first step is to listen attentively to what the different countries and communities report. We will then compare these observations in the context of the situation of the worldwide Church and enlighten everything from the perspective of our charism. In a memorandum we will then formulate the central guidelines and concrete steps for their realization.

What is the theme of this year’s Pentecost Congress?

Sr. M. Cacilda: This year’s motto is “Moved by the Spirit of God“. The Congress wants to be lived as a true Cenacle. Through prayer and the genuine perception of the impulses of the Holy Spirit, a consensus is sought on the way God expects from Schoenstatt for the next five years.

We feel moved by the Holy Spirit in the preparation and realization of the Congress. Under the guidance of the Holy Spirit we want to shape our daily life, the Church and society, as true apostles for this particular time.

How are the preparations going?

P. Walter: We began with a survey open to everyone in all countries about the life of the Movement in their country, and the results helped us to take the next step, which was the so-called small Pentecost. In each country, the leaders met to reflect on how we live the Schoenstatt charism, where are the concrete fruits and what do we want for the future of the country. This was from September to December 2021.

Based on the conclusions, the most important currents of life as an international Schoenstatt Family were elaborated. From this emerged the workshops that were held online with the open participation of all those interested, two of which were prepared in Europe and three in Latin America. They took place in March and April 2022.

Who and how many people will participate in this Congress?

Sr. M. Cacilda: The national leaders of the Movement are invited. According to the development of the Movement, it is either the Director of the Movement or a representative chosen by him, and other chosen representatives from their country. We can host up to 170 participants.

How are Schoenstatters around the world involved in the Pentecost Congress process?

Sr. M. Cacilda: All Schoenstatters are invited to accompany the entire preparation process by participating in the different initiatives offered on the website www.schoenstatt.com. They are also invited to pray and give contributions to the capital of grace, and also participate in the network of livestream events.

What will be the dynamics, how will the reflections and debates be?

P. Walter: The working process is designed in such a way that we seek together the central stream of life. However, the autonomy of the respective countries and communities will be respected. Our Movement is structured in a federative way and therefore respects the independence of the countries.  At the Congress, we hope that the Spirit of God will lead us to a clear vision. Undoubtedly, the practical implementation will be decided later in the countries and continents.

What is expected after this Congress?

Sr. M. Cacilda:  I hope that everyone returns home with a profound experience of an international unity in harmonized diversity and the Congress gave a good impulse to face the current challenges with courage. Each one will continue to work in his own country and in his own place, but with the awareness of being in a strong bond with many friends in the different continents.

Sr. M. Nilza: May the Holy Spirit come with all his gifts to this Congress and inspire the participants in the search for answers and ways for the Movement in the coming years. Thank you very much!

 

 

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