So we have reached the top of the mountain of the transfiguration, as it were. This was the scripture passage that was the backdrop of the Assembly......Jesus went up with James and John and Peter up the mountain and he was transfigured before them.....a voice came from the cloud saying: This is my Son, the beloved, listen to Him. And now we must come down and proclaim what we have received.
This was our last full day and we had a program and a half planned for the day....would we get through it all?
We began with a quiet time of prayer as usual. Then we were to hear from the writing team who had worked to the wee hours of the morning on improving the draft text they had presented to us yesterday and which we responded to. But we rescheduled this for an hour or so later because we didn`t have the photocopies ready. But we had other things to do, namely to make decisions on some financial proposals for the coming years. As always with finances there is some tensions. But the ExCo leaders led us through the votes and we came to some good decisions......
Then we had a look at the next draft of the final document - which is supposed to be an inspiring document expressing what we experience in the past 10 days and how we feel that we are being called forward to the frontiers.. the theme `from our roots to the frontiers` was basic backdrop to this document. The second part of the document is intended to articulate concrete recommendations for the coming 5 years. We had time for feedback to these two parts of the final document. Most were very happy with the first part, suggesting a few changes here and there. The writing team responding to each of the suggestions (and we had the document in English, French and Spanish! - no easy task to have a document that would be acceptable to these 3 language groups!)..... we came to lunch and we were still `haggling` over details in the document. I felt drained and a bit discouraged that we couldn`t come to a consensus on this document....It was sent by to the writing team who worked till 3:30 pm to make a new revision from the suggestions given..... Well!, it happened! There was a clear change of mood after a few hours break....and the document was approved unanimously, leaving small details to the ExCo and writing team to complete. A huge round of applause and a sense of joy pervaded the rest of the afternoon.
Then we did the election of new World ExCo members. This proceeded calmly and in a spirit of prayer. The result was a wonderful new team of Executive Committee members for the World CLC - a Mexican for new president, a Kenyan woman for vice-president, a Lebanese woman for secretary, plus 4 consultors - a Belgian, a North American (USA), an Australian, and a woman from Zambia. Really top notch people. All committed to the Ignatian spirituality as lived in CLC. It was a moving moment to be part of the choice of this new leadership team.
After that we took pictures galore! Then we had the closing Eucharist presided by our world vice- Ecclesial Assistant, Fr. Luke, sj from India. It was in English, French and Spanish as usual. Then at the end we `commissioned` the new leadership team with a prayer and imposition of hands.
The evening concluded with Fiesta outside. There are some still dancing. I did it for a while and then wanted to write this up for you before hitting the sack.
It`s hard to summarize such a wonderful ten days together with such a diversity of peoples, nations all united in the Ignatian vision of prayer, community and mission. We worked hard. But we had some wonderful fun moments together. This is the second World Assembly I`ve been to 2 of them and this one was even more profound for me. I feel truly blessed to be part of this group in Canada and throughout the world. It has deeply enriched my own Jesuit vocation. We are both (CLC and Jesuits) part of a large Ignatian family....and hey! we even got a brother Jesuit serving the church on the Chair of Peter!! God is good and we have much to be thankful for. And much responsibility goes with it.
Thanks for your prayers and support....