THE CONFERENCE OF MAJOR RELIGIOUS SUPERIORS (CMRS) WENT THROUGH A RE – VISIONING PROCESS

THE CONFERENCE OF MAJOR RELIGIOUS SUPERIORS (CMRS) WENT through A Re - Visioning Process

The CMRS members met at the Retreat House Tewatte,3rd – 5th October 2011 for a Re-Visioning Programme. For some time the members had felt the need for formulating a New Vision – Mission statement, and for strategic planning in order to function effectively as a Collective Force. This need was confirmed at the CMRS Leadership Workshop that took place in June 2011 at Hanwella. The timing has been appropriate, just after the celebration of 50 years of the CMRS.
The process commenced by requesting all the Major Superiors to answer a questionnairein consultation with some of their members, which included a SWOT Analysis of the Religious Life in each Congregation in Sri Lanka, reflectively looking at the Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities and Threats.
The Re-Visioning Session
The re-visioning session was inaugurated by the Apostolic Nuncio,His Excellency Archbishop JosephSpiteri.
The guide and facilitator was Fr. Thomas V. Kunnunkal, SJ from Delhi, India. an expert educationist and administrator who focuses on the Gospel picture of Jesus from the perspective of leadership theories taught and practiced in the business world. He finds in the teachings of Jesus many seeds of contemporary insights, and stresses the need of a Vision and Mission to be shared with all the members. He led the participants in a Future Search Methodology in which the stakeholders are the actors and deciders.

The participants, individually and collectively, reflected on the recent history of Sri Lanka in three segments, namely 1995 – 1999, 2000 – 2005 and 2006 – 2011by looking at the key events and milestones that created an impact and that which made a difference: by the Government or an official agency or organization and similarly by the Church and Religious of Sri Lanka.

Taking these background materials, the whole membership present was divided into six groups.They composed six stories and shared with the whole body. Following this, the current trends in the Country including the Church were looked into and the participants identified the following as some of the major trends in order of priority which are interconnected and inter-dependent:Consumerism, Breakdown of Families, Loss of Religious Consciousness,Indiscipline, Selfishness, Individualism among Religious, Lack of Value in family Life
This was followed by three input sessions:

Mr.HarimPieris spoke on the Emerging Socio-Political Trends in Sri Lanka,

Towards a Moral and Spiritual Response; Fr. Reid Shelton Fernando shared about the Trends in the Church 2025 – for Re-visioning; Mr. Anton Meemana spoke of A Lay Person’s Expectations of Religious

The participants were then briefed by Fr. Thomas about the power of a Vision and the needed determination to make it a Mission. With a unanimous WE CAN.

Then he shared about the three circles; namely the Area of Comfort, Area of Influence and the Area of Greater Influence. The participants did some soul searching individually as to where they are and why are they there, the group moved into small groups to consider the following:

“Are we ready to move out of our Area of Comfort/ Comfort Zone? And to

Identifying areas of Greater Influence?”

In response to this, all the participants were not only ready and willing to move out of their Comfort Zones but also felt that as a CMRS body it is imperative to move out into thearea of greater influence to be relevant, and for our lives as religious to be meaningful. The outcome:

CMRS VISION 2025

Rooted in Gospel Values
A Transforming Collective Force
To Effect A:
Healed
Reconciled
Humanized
Integrated
       Sri Lanka

OUR MISSION

Transforming Ourselves
Challenged by the divisive forces at work within us and in society, we engage in a process of healing, reconciling and trust- building among us and thus become a sign of communion.
Catalysts of Transformation
Aware of trends, challenges and contexts in the country, we mobilize our resources at community, neighborhood, institutional, parish and inter-congregational levels for bridge-building activities and effect positive attitudinal changes, building trust and communion.

We uphold the dignity of every human person and take courageous actions against injustice.

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