by Fr. Gustavo Covarrubias Rodríguez
This is to keep you up to date with our Comboni Forum II as well as with the VIII World Social Forum 2009 of Belem. You will find below some relevant information.Jointed the personal form for whom they need it.
Belém, 12.11.2008

To all the participants in the Comboni Forum II,
And to the Provincials and Delegates of the Comboni Institutes.

Dear all:
This is to keep you up to date with our Comboni Forum II as well as with the VIII World Social Forum 2009 of Belem. You will find below some relevant information (we ask you please TO READ ATENTIVLY):

a) Received. We have asked you to send us back a filled in form with your personal information (profile of the 76 participants). Up to now we have received 46 answers: 34 Comboni Missionaries, 07 Comboni Sisters, and 05 LCM.

b) Finality. These forms were meant to allow us to have a synoptic picture with the profile, interests, and suggestions of the participants. Besides this, they would be useful for the organisation, welcoming, accommodation, and interaction between us. Therefore, we ask THOSE WHO HAVE NOT SENT THEIR FILED IN FORM YET, PLEASE DO IT THE AS SOON AS YOU CAN.


a) Doubts. A good number of participants have written to the coordination team inquiring about the VIII WSF inscriptions. In this regard we had suggested in previous communications to do a GROUP INSCRIPTION. This would be easier. So, the coordination has already done the pre-inscription for the Comboni Forum II Group. We shall pay for the inscription of the whole group in due time and each one of you will refund us when we meet for the CF II.

b) Orientation. We ask you please NOT TO DO ANY PERSONAL INSCRIPTION in order to avoid double data on the VIII WSF system. From now on DO NOT CHANGE THE E-MAIL ADRRESS you have sent us in the filled in forms. This is because your personal inscription will be confirmed only with your full name and e-mail address. The VIII WSF coordination will be sending you bulletins and up-to-date information on the VIII WSF by e-mail.

c) New site. We recommend you to KEEP YOURSELVES UPTODATE about what is going on with the whole process of the VIII WSF BY PERIODICALLY ACCESING the VIII FSM official web site:

a) Places. Due to the big number of participants that have already confirmed presence in the CF II – besides the participation of a group of Italian and Brazilian young people - the infrastructure committee has divided the whole group to be accommodated in three different places so that everyone may enjoy good comfort:

- Most of the participants, specially those Comboni Brothers, Fathers, and Sisters, who come from abroad, are going to be accommodated in the House of the Diocese of Ponta de Pedras at this address: Rua Dr. Assis, 834 - Tel. (55) 91 3225 1625.

In this house will be concentrated the CF II’s activities

- A smaller group – members of the BNE and BS provinces, together with the coordinators of the Justice on the Rail Campaign – is going to be accommodated in the seminary Nossa Senhora Mãe da Providência (Barnabitas’ retreat house), at this address: km 27 of the BR 316 (motorway), in the town of Benevides, in the metropolitan area of Belém.
- And, finally, another Comboni group from the BNE province (laity, scholastics, young people from the “Youth for Peace Project” and the “Justice on the Rail Campaign” is going to be accommodated in the Lar Fabiano de Cristo “CAPENI”, at this address: Rua Barão de Igarapé-Mirim, Bairro Guamã (very close to the VIII WSF site).
In the next communicate we shall provide you with a local map and more details on the public transport from and to the accommodation places.

b) Travelling/Transport/Reserve. Considering that the VIII WSF and CF II period is of high season, both for plane and bus travelling, we would like to ask you all TO ORGANIZE FROM NOW YOUR OWN TRAVELLING (AIR OR COACH TICKETS, RESERVES, ETC). For those who need a visa for entry in Brazil is advisable to apply for it as soon as possible. It may take some time to get one.

For those who are planning to get to Belem by plane, we kindly ask to do their reserves. For those coming from the Philippines, North America, and Central America we recommend to take a direct flight (if it is possible to find one) to Belem with possible stop or flight connection at Panama City and/or Manaus, so as to avoid any inconvenient and a too long flight if they are to fly through Rio de Janeiro or São Paulo.

For those coming from Europe, we recommend to do a flight connection in Lisbon to Fortaleza and from there to Belem. No need to go to São Paulo. It may take too long.

And for those coming from Africa directly, if it is not possible to get a flight to Fortaleza, let them do their stops at São Paulo with connection to Belem, via Brasilia.
In any case, we ask you to consider that THE INFRAESTRUCTURE THAT HAS BEEN CREATED FOR THE CF II ONLY ALLOWS US TO OFFER ACCOMODATION FROM JANUARY 25TH (FROM 08:00 AM ONWARD) UNTIL FEBRUARY 4TH (UNTIL 06:00 PM). Thus, we kindly ask you to take into consideration these dates as you buy or reserve your travelling ticket. In very particular cases, we ask you to enter in contact with the coordination of the CF II to work out possible alternatives. We recommend that the Comboni Lay Missionaries or Comboni Sisters who find themselves in this particular situation to contact Barbara Ludewing and Sister Olga from the Comboni Sister, respectively.

We wish to clarify that any other travelling rout that may imply other dates (before or after the CF II and VIII WSF) and different localities rather than Belem (from January 25th to February 4th), will be UNDER THE EXCLUSIVE PERSONAL RESPONSABILITY of the participant.


According to what the Coordination of the CF II promised in previous communicate, there has been carried out a study to see the best way to facilitate the participants to get to know each other and to promote interaction between themselves. For this, we have thought in two different tools: one of reflection and other of communication.

a) Text for reading. For a personal reflection WE RECOMED YOU TO READ two articles by the assessors of our meeting: Fr. Francesco Pierli and Benedictine Monk Marcelo Barros. Both, in their articles, make some questions that may be taken not only for our personal reflection, but also for discussion, debate, and sharing amongst the participants in the meeting. Progressively we are going to make available other texts on the JPIC issues in the continents and some contextualised position taken by the Church on this matter.

b) Google group. This group (Comboni Forum II on the Google) was opened last February. However, it has been visited few times. The coordination believes that it is an electronic means that is easily accessed and can be useful as a tool to promote interaction. That is why we invite you again to participate in this group. There is a small on line archive with material about the CF II. Some more material will be added. Therefore, WE ASK YOU TO ACCEPT OUR INVITATION THAT YOU WILL RECEIVE BY E-MAIL.

At the same time, we send you, in attachment, a brief graphical explanation on how to use this tool. We recommend you to use also the Goolge Talk.


a) JPIC Meeting for the Comboni of Americas. We just want to remind you that, according to a proposal that was put forth and accepted by the Provincials and Delegates of Americas, the date of February the 4th 2009 will be entirely dedicated to the representatives and those in charge of JPIC dimension in their provinces/delegations. They are having a meeting which, in the view of the coordination, should crown the whole process of reflection of the Comboni Forum II and to put forth some points to the provinces as well as to the Institute on JPIC. Therefore, WE ASK THE PROVINCIALS AND DELEGATES TO CONFIRM OR TO DEFINE THE NAMES OF THE REPRESENTATIVES OF THEIR RESPECTIVE CIRCUNSCRIPTIONS for this meeting, so that we may begin to work out a possible lay out and specific tools of work for the meeting day (04/02/09).

b) Comboni Sisters GPI Meeting. In turn, the Comboni Sisters, since some of them will be gathered for the CF II and VIII WSF, are going to meet on the same day (04/02/09) in the house where the CF II meeting takes place to do an evaluation what will be reflected upon and to point out perspective of action in the JPIC field for their Institute. This meeting is for all the Comboni Sisters that work in GIP in America, although all the others are also invited. For more information, please contact Sister Olga.


This campaign is expected to get a very broad repercussion in the VIII WSF and after it. So, we shall keep you up to dated on it. Here a synthesis of what has already been done:

a) Main activities/mobilisations: seminars (03), a socio-economic research in the towns along the Carajás railway, publication of various academics articles and bulletins, visit and international articulation, video, photos, and text production.

b) General evaluation. The Comboni Missionaries are identified through this campaign by some sectors of the Church and society as a group of missionaries that takes the vanguard to defend people’s right. Besides, they are group that assumes with radicalism the most challenging causes of society (vision of another way of being church!).

The number and amplitude of partners we managed to get along this campaign is beyond our expectation. We are transmitting and getting credibility from various sectors of society in what regards the specific intervention (Carajás – Vale), that is, it gives us the impression that things got on track. There is, however, the danger of being just one more institution, efficient and active, or of being used by different interests without offering anything in this campaign (ethical basis, theological motivations, etc.). Danger also of taking the campaign as something specific and an isolated activity taken on by a group and not as a work of the “church”, a practical-understanding and evangelical-missionary reflex.

c) Perspectives. A production-systematisation not only of the technical questions (research, data collection, etc.), but of how this echoed in the local population, province, team-work and, particularly, to point out what are the bases and values that can sustain this commitment. To keep a direct contact with the collaborators and to arrive at the VIII WSF with a good number of alliances. In the post-WSF continue being articulated and networked both at a national and international level and try to systematise a publication about how this campaign has echoed in the team-work and in the local population. Into this would inserted not only the campaign itself, but the entire provincial pastoral horizon (JPIC).
Well, dear friends, we conclude here one more communicate. We hope that it can clarify you with its information. If you have any doubt, please contact us through our e-mail address or that of the “Comboni Forum II” Google Group.
See you!

On behalf of the Coordination of the CF II,
Fr. Gustavo Covarrubias Rodríguez

Communication 7° - November 2008