Mother general’s welcoming address

Mother general’s welcoming address

On Wednesday, April 4th, mother general Annamaria Babbini opened the International Seminar of Provincial and Delegation Councils.

Opening the assembly, mother general welcomed the sisters who have recently taken up the responsibility of being part of the renewed Councils:«You passed from the clear defined activities of your communities to a service of following and accompanying all the sisters of your Province or Delegation and the Ministries. This service allows you to go beyond the community to which you come in order to embrace wider horizons. Before, if the place of your prophecy was the community and the ministry entrusted to you, now the place of your prophecy is the whole Province or Delegation in which you are called to carry out your new mission».

It’s always the Lord, mother general underscored, who takes the initiative, it’s Him who realizes His project. The Lord’s project is open and we are invited to collaborate. But what is that God expects from us? Seeking an answer to this question requires us to deepen our discernment, so that our “least institute” be the sacred and privileged space, chosen by God to continue His work.

In this challenge the role of the authority must be conceived of and lived as a service. Serving is profoundly evangelical and charismatic. It is a simple style, grounded on dialogue, open to listening, gentle, serene, sincere, able to recognize one’s own limits and accepting them in others. Such qualities are summarized in the binomial entrusted to us by Magdalene: charity and humility.

A dynamic Council, mother Annamaria Babbini added, is one that searches, discerns, plans, decides and evaluates. Starting with the listening of the sisters and of an ever-developing reality. Canossian Provinces/Delegations present nowadays very diverse situations: some are flourishing, some are searching, some are concerned, some are growing stronger but need to be accompanied. This very Seminar is the right occasion for experience sharing and mutual learning.

The Canossian institute, present in the five continents, walks together because our specific charismatic identity makes us feel like one family. In this Seminar, which opens our new three-year period, takes place the encounter between memory and prophecy: the first has deep roots, the second has wings.

Closing her address and entrusting these days to the Holy Virgin, mother general pointed out three ways to prepare the future: with a personal journey of faith that is rooted in life, with witnessing communities, and with a meaningful ministeriality.