With the Eucharist celebrated on the 3rd of October by the Bishop of New Hamburg, Mons. Zeno Hastenteufel, was inaugurated the Spirituality Congress with the title: “The Spiritual Magisterium of Pope Francis, a spirituality of joy and commitment: It is time to walk”. Assisting were Fr Agustí the Vicar General, representing Fr Saverio who was making a pastoral visit to the Congo, Fr Javier Mena, Definitor General and some 150 people from the whole of Latin America: friars, nuns, secular Carmelites, associated families and lay Carmelites.
In the Congress were heard such authoritative voices as Fr Scannone sj., professor of the Pope and a brother of the Bergoglio community for a time, Milton Moulton, Antonio Barrios, Eugenio Sainz de Baranda and Jorge Zurek on the part of the Order, as well as the Capuchin Gilmar Zampieri, the Salesian Marcos Sandrini and so many others. Closing the congress was a contribution from Fr Agustí Borrell, a conference titled: “It is time to walk: A program of renewal for the Teresian Carmel”. Taking the principal themes of Pope Francis’ magisterium and of the Discalced Carmelite Chapter document, he invited those attending, as well as the whole of Carmel, to be apostles from their interior life.
This congress is the 14th of a series, continuing on a long journey of reflection begun by Carmel in Latin America from 1971, when the first congress was held in Colombia. From then on, they have been celebrated approximately every three years.
Latin American Carmel walks united with a Church that feels itself a disciple and missionary of Christ, while grateful for the gift of Pope Francis to the universal Church. For this reason, it was proposed in this congress to go to the sources of the spirituality and thought of Pope Francis, appropriating the freshness of his message and seeking the lines of convergence with our teachers, Saint Teresa of Jesus and Saint John of the Cross.