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10 Conecta Internacional_ Mayo 2014

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  • MAY 2014


    Lay people,

    shared mission

    Easter in Suesa

    Workshop for

    Initial Forma-


    Sports in our



    Mary Ward


    CONECTA N 10

    Mary Burkart, ibvm, writes about migrants reality (most of them from the

    Sub-Saharan Africa) in Morocco, after the photograph Exposition held in our

    Mission in Asilah (Morocco).

    To be honest one of the things that really kills me here, is the plight of

    the migrants and refugees.

    There is nothing we can do that makes a real difference. I guess I like to

    feel I am working towards something. In this situation, for these people,

    there is little, if any chance of progression. It is about staying alive,

    day by day - and doing anything to live, or feel good. For those living

    hand to mouth, the luxury of relationships is long gone. They do not see us,


  • 2

    they see only people who have more than them.

    For the majority all they can do is beg. They are a

    mixture of "operators" and people at the end of

    their tether. If I help someone, I feel bad,

    because I do not know if they have been lying to

    me. If I can't help someone. I feel bad because

    they may be telling the truth and I rejected them.

    We don't have a budget, we don't know them, as

    they come to Asilah from other places. Often the

    same people come back time after time to our

    door. Looking for bus fares, food, medicine. So-

    metimes, when we ask "where are you going?"

    they do not have a destination, or randomly gi-

    ve the name of a city. Sometimes they produce

    prescriptions and say they have malaria, for ins-

    tance but the script is for diabetes. They always

    prefer money to food.

    Women carry their babies on their backs. Every

    street corner in Tangiers has at least two migrants

    or refugees begging from cars as they wait for the

    lights to change. Mingled with them are Moroc-

    cans on crutches, or burned, or simply standing,

    with hands out, or kids selling Kleenex.

    We are spending taxes on building fortress Euro-

    pe. Some of the lucky ones are being fed in

    camps. Others are scrounging around in the hills

    or dying trying to get here, to no woman/man's

    land. So over 30,000 people mill about trying to

    stay alive and there really is nothing we can do.



  • 3

    On Saturday, 22th March, the first great meeting of lay people linked to religious orders was hold at

    Nuestra Seora del Recuedo School (Jesuits). It was a firm bet led by CONFER and mostly organised by

    lay people, which was supported by 1.000 participants, religious and lay people. They hail from 84 diffe-

    rent congretations. Ana Serrano and David del Cerro (Mary Ward Mission) tell us how the event was.

    The meeting proceeded with a very familiar atmosphere, with different people talking and pointing out

    what living as a lay person in shared mission means to them. The morning session began with some really

    impressive lectures which the audience enjoyed. / ANA SERRANO & DAVID DEL CERRO


  • One more year, a small group

    of young adults, IBVM

    friends, have enjoyed the tra-

    ditional Pascua Universita-

    ria. This time, they were six,

    and it was a great opportuni-

    ty to meet each other, to

    stop the day-to-day timing,

    to think, talk and pray.

    We had moments of total

    solitude, moments to reflect,

    and to think of God; but also

    days to get along with the

    others, to enjoy and to be

    filled by God, explains Beatriz Lpez de Quesada, one of the participants and teacher of Cullera school.




    Last 27th April, we organized the Formation Workshop led by Mara Teresa Vorcy, ibvm. A good number of

    sisters attended to the Workshop, which goal was to keep on working on how to de responsable in the

    Initial Formation, an aspect that will be developed in the next sessions.

  • 5

    Last April, four of our schools held the Sports Day, one of the most special days for teachers, students and

    families. As usual, girls and boys were divided into houses vila, Loyola y Javier and they sportingly com-

    peted in order to reach the victory. Besides the main event, several activities were organised, such as

    raffles, solidarity market stalls, snacks sale points, face painting, fancy dresses, disco All these initiatives

    were aimed to raise money, which this time will go to scholarship funds or Mary Ward Foundation Projects.


  • Last February, members of MWI Network gathered

    in Toronto during 15 days with the intention of

    getting to know each other much better, create

    synergy and go further together towards the com-

    mon development.

    The meeting was backed by the Generate. 28 peo-

    ple -16 Ibvm and 12 lay people (representing all

    the provinces from Australia, Canada, Spain, Unit-

    ed States, India, England, Ireland, Kenia, Mauricio,

    Peru and South Africa) took part on it, apart from

    Carmen Diston and Sandra Perret, representing the

    Generalate, and Noelle Corscadden, now Province

    Leader of Ireland and founder of the International

    Mary Ward Network. There were also three partici-

    pants from Spain: Elena Cerdeiras, Maria Llins and

    Monte Algarrada.

    The main goal was to evaluate, learn and explore

    the history and the current tasks of MWI Network

    in the different countries all over the world where

    it is present, as well as to go further for making up

    new ways of collaboration, voluntary works and


    MWI started in 2001 and was introduced in differ-

    ent ways in every province. In the same way, it has

    made different progress due to the realities of

    each country.

    MWI was born in Mauritius GC 1998. There was an

    office in Ireland, led by Noelle Eileen Randles and

    Lucy Byrne. Since the 2006 GC, in Peru, all provinc-

    es were invited to set up a MWI office, which in

    Spain is known as Mary Ward Foundation, since


    Over the meeting we also dealt with the strategic

    issues which MWI Network wants to deal with fac-

    ing the future.

    We began our work by a session given by Jeanne

    Cove (Canadian Ibvm), who talked to us about how

    to interpret our MWI mission from the point of

    view of the Just Person.




  • In the evening, Noelle went over the history of

    MWI and explained how we have achieved the cur-

    rent moment.

    The gathering had also a special guest, Jenny Ca-

    fiso, International Canadian Jesuits directress, who

    shared her thoughts and learning about develop-


    She emphasized the Churchs evolution from chari-

    ty and paternalism to solidarity and Human Rights.

    We worked in groups about what criteria we have

    to bear in mind in our development working in a

    global and local con-

    text. .

    Then we analyzed the

    meaning and the rela-

    tionship between

    MWI, JPIC and our

    NGO in United Na-



    In these lines, Id like to highlight

    what the multicultural meeting

    was, the richness of the shared Mis-

    sion and the need of keeping on,

    becoming aware that the only pos-

    sibility to optimize our ressources is

    through networking.

    This meetings vital aim was know

    the reality of MWI Network and

    plan together the future, in order to

    be most efficient on our daily basis.

    I would also emphasize the neces-

    sity of living connected. The Mis-

    sion of the Institute around the

    world is broad and diverse. We ha-

    ve to realize and be aware that we

    can accelerate or paralyze our task,

    only when we collaborate with each other

    and establish strategies to be efficient.

    Mary Wards family consists of thousand of

    people all over the world, not only Ibvm.

    How can we join our efforts? Matters for im-

    plementation: the communication about

    what we do, a transparent administration,

    encouraging volunteers, and the coordination

    between the different provinces with JPIC

    and United Nations. / ELENA CERDEIRAS

  • In February, I visited Cecilia O Dywer in New

    York. Just that week, we were celebrating our ten

    years in United Nations as an Institute.

    Our office is in a nearby building to United Na-

    tions: a small space that we share with Charitys

    Sisters. There, we do a quiet work, perhaps it is

    not much useful, perhaps it is necessary, perhaps

    it is essential to talk about us to the world.

    I visited United Nations Headquarters, a big build-

    ing plenty of rooms, some full, some empty, with

    people from different origins, speaking along the

    corridors, gathered in different forums. I remem-

    ber what I thought by then: At least, we, human

    beings, have determined a physical space where

    we sit down and talk about our conflicts and what

    we want and wish to do for our world.

    Throughout History, exceptional people have

    been turned up and they have known how to lead

    and provoke changes for Humanity. It is desirable

    this kind of people still keep on emerging.

    I reckon now it is time for discussions, time for

    denouncing and finishing up with the impunity of

    people who use power in an abusive way. Its

    time for us to get together to establish policies

    which will support Human Rights and respect en-

    vironment. I know that debates and agreements

    are not enough; life is what matters.

    There are still revolutions, civil wars, environmen-

    tal degradation, genocides.. I am well aware of

    that. However, they have always been there,

    what makes a difference in the XX Century is that

    now we can appeal to agreements, we can join

    us, we can dream together, and even more, we

    can do that in a civilized way, inside a room,

    sitting down and listening to each other.

    I know there is a long way to travel, but I keep

    thinking that a better world is possible and Hu-

    man Nations is part of the human ways to achieve


    I think the work we do there its important. I im-

    agine it is difficult sometimes, because it is com-

    plicated to connect the concrete initiatives in

    different countries with the work in United Na-

    tions; sometimes it is satisfactory, when you see

    you are moving forward; sometime it is frus-

    trating, because it seems nobody knows what you

    are doing. From here, I would like to express my

    gratitude to Cecilia and all the people who have

    worked and are still working in this field.