Religious and Missionaries look to the future with hope
AMRI Launches New Strategic Plan
At a gathering in Tullamore of almost 200 religious sisters, brothers and priests from leadership teams of Catholic religious and missionary congregations; AMRI, the representative association for religious and missionaries, launched their new 5-year plan.
Titled: A future with hope, the plan grew from consultations with leaders of religious congregations and aims to chart the future for religious and missionary life in Ireland at a time when congregations are becoming smaller and the number of members over age 70 is increasing.
“The plan is an exercise in discernment as we listened to the concerns, hopes and dreams for the future of religious and missionary life in Ireland”, said Abbot Brendan Coffey, OSB, president of AMRI.
“The plan takes the synodal pathway seriously, wanting to deepen the process of re-visioning the Church with greater participation of women in leadership and promoting the co-responsibility of laypeople, said Sr Mary Hanrahan, vice-president of AMRI.
“There is a commitment to increase supports and services to our members who are the leaders of congregations by providing training and more opportunities for collaboration on issues all the congregations are facing, such as aging and governance, but also articulating the vision and value of religious life, vocations promotions and supports to younger religious”, said David Rose, secretary general of AMRI.
“It also has a strong outward focus on social justice with those on the margins of our society and commits us to promoting care of creation called for by Pope Francis in his letter Laudato Si. This year 45 member congregations of AMRI welcomed Ukrainian and other refugees by making properties available and offering pastoral care and support.
“The plan calls for the deepening of the culture of child safeguarding and on-going commitment to healing services for survivors, and to listen respectfully to their voices”, said David Rose.
The gathering in the Tullamore Court hotel, was the AMRI leaders national conference, where keynote speaker, acclaimed US author and psychologist Ted Dunn, challenged participants to engage in the work of transformation of their congregations and of society.
AMRI is the representative and support organisation for the leaders of the 155 Catholic religious and missionary congregations and organisations. The association provides leadership, fosters collaboration and promotes spirituality, social justice and sustainable living on a shared journey of faith. See www.amri.ie