“There are many things coming up and one of those things is that we are in the stage of renewal. We are in the stage of rebirth, we are in the stage of change,” Fr James Lengarin, Superior General of the Consolata Missionaries has said while calling on the missionaries to be more precise in dealing with evangelization in today’s world.
In his homily during a Holy Mass at Consolata Shrine Nairobi on August 8, ahead of his meeting with Consolata Missionaries working in the Kenya/Uganda region, the newly elected Superior General revealed that according to an analysis by the General Chapter, many changes were happening and the congregation was behind in adjusting to some of the new realities.
“How are we, therefore, going to confront these changes? The only thing is we go back to the drawing board. To go back to and see as a congregation what is important for us? How is our charism working right now? What is our ad gentes at the moment?” he quipped.
“You can see in Europe, which was the starting point as missionary animation and vocation animation centres are now trying to become ad gentes centres. But which ad gentes? Is it the same ad gentes that we got from birth? That which identifies us as Consolata missionaries to go to the non-Christians? This is the big question,” he stressed.
As part of the General Chapter’s 6-year plan, Fr Lengarin disclosed that research will be carried out to “purify the mission ad gentes so that we can actually know what is this mission ad gentes because it means that we have lost the point.”
Also part of the General Chapter’s objectives, he said, is to review the constitution for the congregation, which “is becoming more international and more multinational and multi-cultural” to speak “to each one of us.”
“Ongoing formation is going to be emphasized for all of us in order for us to arrive to the point of saying, Yes, we know what the Lord is asking and we have to do exactly that,” he added, noting that “Even if it means that we are going to be reduced to be few members, but they are members who actually give their lives to others.”
The main celebrant of the Mass, Bishop Peter Kihara IMC of the Catholic Diocese of Marsabit called on the missionaries from the region to commit to supporting Fr Lengarin as he heads the institute.
According to Bishop Kihara, “East or west home is best and therefore support from here is a great encouragement that he requires. Each one of us in a simple way does what he can. We thank God for his gifts, thanking God for our institute, thank God for each member of this region of Kenya and Uganda.”