LIVING EVANGELICAL POVERTY WITH OUR LADY
IN THE MENDICANT TRADITION
Religious life has experienced a rapid evolution in the last twenty five years both in its conceptual and existential dimension. This evolution was brought about by a society that is tending towards consumerism and globalization. As every spheres of human society continue to evolve and address the pressing situation of the times, religious life is caught up in this web of change and evolution as it addresses its own reality and the realities around her.
As globalization and technological advancements has given us control over external world, it has alienated us from understanding the inner intricacies of the human person and the complex reality of his essence and existence. The human person was relegated to the periphery of his own existence, the crowning glory of God’s creation. Alienating His creation would mean alienating the Creator. What is the role of religious life in this current, overbearing and complex situation? Where do we draw our reflections and eventually our solutions vis-à-vis a world that is globalized.
The reflection of the recent years has led the Order to perceive that it is important to go back to the central theme of every religious vocation: the search for and experience of God (GC 2001) and its concrete expression in the following of Christ starting with the spirituality of abandonment (CG 2007).
The central point of the General Chapter 2007 focused on theme of evangelical poverty, Leaving everything, they followed Him (Luke 5, 11). The important element in this sentence is not leaving everything but rather they followed Him. There is no sadness in leaving everything – but there is joy in discovering the pearl of great price. For every Servant of Mary, the option for evangelical poverty is not an end in itself but a choice made for the love for Christ.
The main objective of this paper is to help the Order to continue the journey towards our understanding of evangelical poverty in the mendicant tradition, understand human existence and development in the current macro-system and eventually come up with concrete projects as a realization of the reflections made in different communities, vicariates, and provinces.
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