By Brother Ghislain Mukonkole | en français

During my stay in Rome last June I had a unique experience of brotherhood that was truly worthy of its name. I lived the words of the Fundamental Principles that say that we are “a band of Brothers who help, encourage and edify one another and who work together.”
In all our discussions and sharing sessions, both in large and small groups, I was edified at every moment by the sincere openness and the spirit of listening that occurred between Brothers. Each of us was sharing things not just from the head but from the depth of our hearts. These were truly heart to heart sharing sessions.
In addition to the sharing, all the members of the Integration Team quickly became aware and convinced that we need a real transformation on the personal level as well as the congregational level if we are to consider ourselves as members of one and the same village.
The aspect that hit me strongly was the degree of consideration that was given to each one who spoke during the discussions. Each Brother’s remarks were valued and considered by the entire group. I recall when I had put forth the idea about African Brothers’ being a part of the future of our Xaverian presence in the United States (given the fact that many American Brothers are elderly and that the missionary presence came to an end in England and Belgium), everyone took my concern into consideration and made the new consciousness a subject for discussion to be taken into account from now on. I was very encouraged and edified by this.
At the meeting I felt in the full sense like a member of the Congregation, despite my limitations and shortcomings. I learned that I have equal place among the Brothers. This experience which I had in Rome is why I invite all the Brothers in the Congregation to become a part of this new consciousness that this process of transformation is bringing to us. Finding ourselves at the graced crossroads, may each of us be ready to open his heart for a frank dialogue among ourselves in order to embrace the future with a lot of hope and to bring our hearts to life so that this transformation process leads to a happy end.

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