AMERICA/BRAZIL - Consecrated Life: “essential part of Catholic church presence in the Amazon””

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Posted on: 04/26/18
Tabatinga – “The Amazon is an area where religious life in Latin America finds an important place for its missionary vocation” Fides was told by Sr. Luz Marina Valencia, of the St Teresa of Jesus Sisters, executive secretary of the Conference of men and women Religious of Latin America and the Caribbean . At Tabatinga, a town in the western part of the state of Amazonas, in Brazil, a five day meeting for Religious Congregations with programmes for the Amazon closes today 24 April. Some ninety participants, including men and women religious, and representatives of diocesan priests and laity working as missionaries in various parts of the Amazon, reflected in these five days on the theme "Pan-Amazon missionary work in the prospect of Integral Ecology ".
The meeting, organised by CLAR and the Catholic pan-Amazon network , was held at a strategic venue, because this Brazilian city of Tabatinga, has borders with Peru and Colombia
“Many religious congregations see Amazonia as a special challenge, the CLAR secretary continues. To be in Amazonia means to respond to the charisma of the different congregations, "because almost all our Founders formed congregations to meet the urgent needs of the local Church here, and in our day Amazonia is a challenge not only for the Catholic Church but also for society, and the whole world because it demands attention also for the indigenous peoples " concludes Sr. Luz Marina.
The importance of religious life in Amazonia was underlined by Mauricio López, Secretary executive of REPAM, who told Fides that without it "the presence of the Liberator United programme in this situation would not be possible ". For López "if religious life were not present as it is in Amazonia, REPAM would not exist", adding that "certainly while the people in their way of life are expressions of Liberator United, the care offered by the Catholic Church here works mainly through Religious Life". In this sense, Lopez insists that "in the essential strength of this pan-amazon presence is Consecrated Life".
In fact CLAR and REPAM "enjoy strong synergy", Fides was told by the CLAR representative to REPAM, Marist Brother João Gutemberg,: "CLAR and REPAM are similar, being one in the other, both working for the connection of Religious Life in the Pan-Amazon area and this work is also a testimony of life ". It follows therefore that "the more institutional and personal mission are connected involving committed individuals searching for new paths, the more energy will go to the common good " concludes Gutemberg.


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