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And the volcanic ash did not deter us…
30/06/2011 Uruguay

In connection with restructuring of the Congregation, Playa Pascual, Uruguay, was the site of an early June first meeting of the Oblate commissions of Paraguay and Uruguay, seeking to deepen fraternal dialogue and mutual understanding in view of an eventual unification. In recent years, our Units have shared various activities, council meetings, exchange of personnel, preaching of retreats, missions, gatherings of young Oblates, of lay associates, etc. It was proposed to form a commission of 2 or 3 members from each Unit in order to find out what we have in common. Present at this first meeting were Guido ACOSTA, Aníbal CASURIAGA and Roger BULAMBA from Paraguay, and from Uruguay, Antonio BUONANNO and Jorge ALBERGATI.

The first thing we noticed was the climate of sincerity and freedom as well as moments of laughter and joking. In this first stage, we want to know each other better. Therefore, we have prepared a paper in which we examine whether we have a common understanding of fundamental issues such as formation, mission, finances and community. The next step will be to dream together. This is the “key” to a process toward greater dialogue. To the extent that we equip ourselves with rationale and motives, we will move forward, secure and energized, toward that which the Congregation asks of us. These motives will help us “move beyond necessity to opportunity.”

What was unforeseen were the ashes from the Puyehue volcano that made us postpone the meeting by one day, since the airport was closed, and also to extend it by two days, thus giving us the opportunity to visit “La Guadalupita,” our formation house, Oblate houses in the south and to take part in Eucharistic celebrations in our barrios. (Jorge Albergati)