ORIENTATIONS FOR 2012-2017
What is a general chapter?
The general chapter, while it is in session, constitutes the highest authority in the Congregation. Ordinarily, the General Superior convokes and presides over the General Chapter, which takes place every five years. It is composed of the General Superior, the General Councilors, the Provincial Superiors and the delegates elected by each province.
The first task of the General Chapter is to preserve the spiritual heritage of the Congregation. In light of the mission and the spirit of the Congregation, the Chapter determines the overall religious-apostolic orientations that will guide the Congregation for the next 5 years, taking into account the needs of the Church and society. If necessary, it also revises the Constitutions and Rules of the Congregation.
Through a process of discernment, the General Superior and the General Councilors are elected to carry out the Orientations determined by the General Chapter.
Because the future direction of the Congregation is determined by the Orientations identified by the General Chapter, this is a gathering of great importance for the Sisters of Providence and for those whom they serve. In the presence of the Holy Spirit and the light of the Gospel of Jesus Christ, a general chapter is a time for deep reflection and communal conversion lived in an attitude of simplicity, prayer and charity.
2012 General Chapter:
« Rooted in Providence, We Welcome the Future»
We move forward, enlivened by the Spirit who invites us as a congregation to weave together the threads of our intercultural reality for the sake of the Mission. With Blessed Émilie, Mother Bernarda and Mother Joseph, we want to live without borders and to be interconnected, attentive to the needs of the poor and of creation.
For these reasons, we resolve:
Orientations of the 2012 General Chapter
To commit ourselves, personally and communally, to contemplative listening, dialogue and discernment as our way of life:
Using contemplative listening, dialogue, and discernment to inform our decision-making processes in order to deepen our Mission with and for the poor in the context of an evolving world.
Opening our hearts and welcoming diversity so that we may grow in an intercultural life and ministry that are expressive of our life in Christ.
To explore Congregational structures that will free us to open ourselves and respond to the new and to emerging needs:
Adopting practices at all levels that will facilitate our communication and collaboration in order to live the Mission in an attitude of interdependence between and among the entities.
Preparing, through an intercultural and consultative process, alternative models of governance for consideration by the General Leadership Team and/or by the 2017 General Chapter.
To ensure formation for Mission in light of the realities of our Congregation and those of the world of today.
Ensuring consistency and unity in the initial formation programs of the Congregation (C. 53).
Exploring the possibility of a congregational novitiate, including the formation of novitiate personnel.
Affirming and revitalizing the values of peace, justice, and integrity of creation, and the actions which follow (e.g., participating in JPIC, UNANIMA International).
Offering congregational programs of continuing formation.
- Encouraging and facilitating:
- Learning another language
- Cross-cultural experiences
- Formation for leadership and administration
- Offering an intercultural dimension in the formation programs of Providence Associates.
Assuring that our Providence ministries provide for our lay collaborators formation programs in Providence spirituality, charism, and mission for the poor.