miércoles, 19 de marzo de 2014

Interview with Sister Marta Ceballos Coordinator of the Generalate Community by Marie Françoise Mestry

Sr Marta Ceballos, fifth, from the left is the Coordinator of the Generalate Community of the Good
Shepherd in Rome.She belongs to the Province of Mid- North America. She served as the Congregational Treasurer from 1993 - 1999. Her role is to coordinate the Generalate Community in its efforts to live the Good Shepherd mission, keeping in mind its unique situation as an international community at the service of the whole Congregation. Since 1995, the Coordinator has been the link between the other Congregations in the same building. Since March 25, 2009, we are now four Congregations in the house.

Photo: From left to right: Marie Françoise Mestry, Congregational Communications Coordinator; Yolanda Borbon, Congregational Treasurer; Ana Maria Quiroz, Hospitality Coordinator; Pramilla Fernando, Secretary; Marta Ceballos, Generalate Community Coordinator; Yvette Arnold, Congregational Secretary; Gemma Dinglasan, Assistant Treasurer and Gratia Fernando Liturgy Coordinator.

Tell us about the Generalate community. When was it created? When did the Sisters first come to the Generalate in Rome?

Transfer of the Generalate to Rome in 1966

The question of transferring the Generalate to Rome had long been on the Agenda-since the General chapter of 1933, in fact. The necessity of finding a suitable site, the long-drawn out construction of Bravetta and the outbreak of World War II (1939-1945) delayed the project. In 1966, after the reelection of Sister Mary Thomas Aquinas Lee the time at least seemed ripe and on October 26,Sr Mary Aquinas with three assistants and six secretaries took over a wing in Bravetta. But Bravetta was to prove too large, and in 1969 the Generalate moved to its present site off Via Aurelia.


The restructuring of the secretariat at the Generalate actually began as a project after the General Chapter of 1997.

At that time, the Congregational Leadership Team was no longer organized according to regions. However, each General Councilor, as well as the Congregational Leader, had a Sister as a personal secretary, a Sister who worked in the language of the Councilor.At the same time as this structural change occurred, there was a desire on the part of the Congregational Leadership Team to free up more Sisters from the Generalate Community to be involved in direct ministry.The Congregational Leadership Team made the decision to phase out Sisters as secretaries to the General Councilors and hire three secretaries who would be linked to the three principal language groups of the Congregation: French, English and Spanish. As a result, for more than two years before the General Assembly/Chapter of 2003, the Sisters who served in the secretariat as well as the Sisters of the Generalate community participated intensely in a process for the restructuring of the Secretariat.
The three new employees would be at the service of the Congregational Leadership Team and directly responsible to the Secretary General.

From the GSN 184

Could you share the vision and the mission of the actual Generalate community ?

The mission of the Generalate Community is to support the Congregational Leader and her team. We are the home Community for them. We welcome them back as they travel. We keep in touch with them even when they are away from the Generalate. We welcome our Good Shepherd sisters who visit us for different reasons for example committee and commission meetings, family members and our mission collaborators. We also welcome the guests of the other three congregations in the house. We support the MDO helping out when there are some sales. Each sister has a specific role in the community.

Do you have some activities throughout the year?

We have activities in maintaining our community life, planning liturgies, recreation. We act as tour guides, helping our guests learn how to get about the city of Rome, attend papal audiences etc. We provide transportation to and from the airport. We celebrate Birthdays, feast days, national days, Thanksgiving days meaningfully. We plan our retreat, community outing, home visit etc.

For some of the Congregational celebrations, the Provincialate community, the local OLC community and the Eudists join us.

Some sisters are also involved in intercongregational organisations related to Communications, Congregational secretaries, Congregational treasurers, Justice and Peace, Migrant workers. Sister Gratia Fernando is our representative for Justice and Peace commission.Sister Ana Maria Quiroz works in a parish for Migrants Everybody is encouraged to participate in courses/ conferences, develop their talents for the mission. 

Could you share with us about your personal experience living in this community (intercongregational and international) ?

It has been both a graced experience and a challenge to live in an International and Inter Congregational Community. We are mutually enriched through the living and sharing of the different Congregations with their specific charism and their unique way of reaching the people they are called to serve in the Church.
It is wonderful to hear Brigid and the Councilors share about the different missions and realities around the world.

Chinese New year Celebration Generalate Community , Rome January 31st 2014

On January 31, in our Generalate, we celebrated the Chinese New Year. This custom of raising funds for a mission was begun by Susan Chia and we thank her for the initiative. The four communities, Good Shepherd, Our Lady of Charity, Notre Dame de Namur and Missionary Franciscans of the Immaculate Conception who live here in the Generalate in Rome, Cristina Duranti with her team (MDO) were all present together with the participants of their training programme and the members of the advisory committee. We were in all about 45 people participating in the event.

Sr. Gemma with the help of the sisters in the Generalate community arranged the dining room décor and she delighted us in producing a wonderfully appetizing Chinese cuisine. We began our meal with a prayer prepared by Sister Gemma. Each table was assigned to read a prayer of blessing. All of us received a little red envelope for the donation we wished to give for the mission, and this year it was for our mission in
Congo. We ended the prayer with a song of thanksgiving: “Give thanks to the Lord”. The sum collected was around 1,000 Euros.

Main source: buonpastoreint.org...

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