According to the Guide for the Implementation of the XVIII General Chapter and its themes of on-going formation, 2019 will be the year of interculturality (cf. CA ’15, 47, 1-6). To carry out this proposal, the General Secretariat for Formation (GSF) has prepared supplements for personal and community reflection and prayer, to assist the whole Institute to study this theme, bearing in mind the riches of inter-culture lived by the Institute. “Multi-culture is a grace that has been part of the ‘charismatic patrimony’ of our Institute ever since its foundation” (RV 18).  [In the picture, Comboni missionaries: Fr. Sandoval Luiz Dutra da Luz (Brazil), Fr. Avoga Benjamin (Kenya), Fr. Muhindo Nzoli Innocent (RD. Congo), and Fr. Pastor Gino (Italy) in Namapa, Mozambique].

To assist each confrere, each community and circumscription in this journey, the GSF has organised a workshop in Rome to run from 20 to 27 January 2019. Each circumscription will send a representative to this workshop, possibly the person who, in the Secretariat for Formation, is responsible for formation or accompanies on-going formation so that he may then animate the whole of the circumscription on the theme of interculturality: organising, accompanying, evaluating and making known the results of the work. This work of animation will be organised especially with the preparation of the community superiors and according to chosen modalities, bearing in mind the local situations: one community at a time or a number of communities together etc. The process on the theme of interculturality is a journey of on-going formation: there will be times for reflection, attending to the challenges that we face, of searching for instruments to make this gift bear fruit for our growth, at the personal level, the level of community life and that of missionary witness.

This seminar has as its objective to enable the participants to have an experience of interculturality and to reflect on past experiences, using a methodology similar to that of the Ratio Missionis. This will then lead each community to choose concretely how to live this gift, to describe this commitment and insert it into its community charter.

Furthermore, a letter will be sent from the GC/GSF containing the motivations and practical orientations to live deeply this year of interculturality.

We shall also have other instruments of animation on the level of the General Direction. E.g. printed material-supplements on the theme of interculturality through Familia Comboniana, already published messages and articles such as the Limone Symposium and the intervention of Fr. Mileto Palmiro at the Intercapitular, and new initiatives. The GC wishes to encourage continental and circumscription initiatives to increase our understanding of the theme.