General Chapter 2019
A warm welcome to each one who visits these pages — FCJ Sisters, FCJ Companions in Mission, family, friends, colleagues and anyone else who is interested.
Some of you will want to know what a general chapter is, why do have them? A major part of any general chapter is discerning the way forward for the Society. Perhaps you are interested in who participates in the General Chapter, or when and where it takes place. Others will know all that and want to jump straight to the theme of the General Chapter.
The 2019 General Chapter was held in FCJ Christian Life Centre, Calgary from the 4th October to 31st October, inclusive of a preparatory retreat of six days. To get a flavor of the Chapter experience and what happened during the Chapter, check out the General Chapter News page.
The 2019 General Chapter has called each sister to respond to the Spirit in specific ways during the next six years through a document called Chapter Calls: Widening the Circle of Love.
As we FCJs — individually, as local groups and across the Society — live into and work with these calls, we hope that our FCJ Companions in Mission, families, friends and colleagues will also find meaning and inspiration here.
The what and why of a General Chapter
A general chapter is always a key moment for each FCJ Sister as we take time to look at our individual lives and our life as a group across the world so that we may be led by the Holy Spirit into the future.
Our Constitutions describe a general chapter as entering in a special way into the paschal mystery, in the hope of continual conversion and renewal, individual and corporate so that we may search in faith for God’s will in the contemporary church and the contemporary world. (Cons. 276)
The quality of any General Chapter depends on all FCJs since the outcome of the chapter depends on the quality of the preparation, on each FCJ contributing to the best of her ability to the preparation process.
General Chapters are held to discern the future directions of the FCJ Society and to elect members of our Central Leadership. This Chapter will be electing a general superior and her assistants.
What is the General Chapter theme?
The theme chosen for the 2019 General Chapter and reflected in the logo above was:
Le bon Dieu conduit tout lui-même
God – Beauty, Truth, Goodness – is doing everything. We have entered the bicentenary of our foundation (1820-2020) with gratitude and marvel at what God has accomplished in and through us, trusting in God’s on-going strength and support. Jesus’s call to discipleship has its own particular context in our time. His cry ‘I thirst’ which meant so much to our foundress, Marie Madeleine d’Houët, is heard in a particular way in every age. A chapter is a time when we listen again to this cry of thirst.
Theme: Le bon Dieu conduit tout lui-même
We celebrate our bicentenary with gratitude and marvel at what God has accomplished in and through us, trusting in God’s strength and support. Jesus’s cry ‘I thirst’ which meant so much to Marie Madeleine is heard in a particular way in every age. A chapter is a time when we listen again to this cry.
Who participates in the General Chapter?
In a very real way each FCJ contributes to the General Chapter by involving herself fully in the preparation for the Chapter and by her prayerful support both before and during the Chapter. This preparation started when our General Superior convoked the Chapter on 21st September 2018.
Once the Chapter has finished it once again becomes the responsibility of each FCJ to take the calls given by the Chapter and discern how to live them out, both individually and communally.
Take a look at the final 2019 General Chapter document Chapter Calls: Widening the Circle of Love which calls each sister to respond to the Spirit in specific ways during the next six years through a document. As we FCJs — individually, as local groups and across the Society — live into and work with these calls, we hope that our FCJ Companions in Mission, families, friends and colleagues will also find meaning and inspiration here.