Presentation on theme: "The superior is a companion and a helper of communal and individual growth. Without judging, without reproaching (but confronting and mirroring), listening."— Presentation transcript:
The superior is a companion and a helper of communal and individual growth. Without judging, without reproaching (but confronting and mirroring), listening to each one, respecting ideas, rhythms, situations, she distinguishes what depends on her and on others (she is not responsible of all that happens in the community). She needs to learn everyday to help others: not making up and doing what each sister can and must do, but sharing the responsibilities. The leader involves everybody in the growth of the community (fraternally and spiritually)
ESSENTIAL QUALITIES OF A LEADER: SERENITY: which means that the sensibility is under control and never prevents access to peace, freedom and life which give her solidity, enabling her to weather the storms without panicking. INTUITION : that enables the leader to sense the mood, the atmosphere that will help her take into account the elements of the situation. DECISIVENESS: this goes along with the sense of responsibility. A leader must be capable of taking a stand when necessary, according to what is best for everyone. COMPETENCE: in task-oriented group, technical competence is needed in view of the goal. For life-oriented group, the competence required is an ability to bring people to live and work together in a peaceful climate, to help individuals to be themselves, to grow and to be fulfilled.
OUR FUNCTION AS A LEADER IS: A SERVICE AND NOT A TASK A MINISTRY AND NOT A JOB
MARK 10: 35-45 JONH 13: 2-17 LEADERSHIP IS DEFINED AS SERVICE TO THE COMMUNITY RATHER THAN IN TERMS OF PREROGATIVES OR QUALIFICATIONS. PRIVILEGES ARE TO BE AVOIDED FOR HUMILITY AND SERVICE WHICH ARE THEMSELVES THE MARKS OF A LEADER IN THE CHRISTIAN COMMUNITY.
LOOKING AT LEADERSHIP THROUGH THE SCRIPTURES: MT. 18 - SPEAKS OF COLLECTIVE LEADERSHIP; LK. 12: 32-34 - PROHIBITS FINANCIAL REWARDS FOR LEADERSHIP BEYOND THE SUPPLY OF THE NEEDS OF THE LEADER; JOHN 13 – 17: PATTERN OF CHRISTIAN LEADER IS ONE OF SUFFERING SERVANT – LOVE; PHIL. 2: 5-11 – PAULS OWN PATTERN OF SELF-GIVING AND HUMILITY; 2 COR. – CARES, LABORS, FASTINGS AS MARKS OF SERVICE FOR CHRIST; 1 TIM. 3 // TITUS 1 // PETER 5: - A LEADER IS A PERSON WHO IS NOT SEEKING PERSONAL GAIN FROM THE POWER AND PRESTIGE OF OFFICE
Leadership according to the World We lead more by what we say than by listening; We lead more by doing than being; We lead more by making things happen than by allowing them to happen; We lead more by being in control than by surrender; We lead more by comparing than by accepting; We lead more from the head than from the heart; We lead more by external change than internal change; We lead according to how others react rather than by being rooted in who we are. Leadership according to the Gospel We lead more by listening than by what we say; We lead more by being than by doing We lead more by allowing things; to happen than by making them happen; We lead more by surrendering than by being in control; We lead more by accepting than by comparing; We lead more from the heart than from the head; We lead more by internal change than by external change; We lead more by being rooted in who we are rather than according to others' reactions.
The task of animation and the style in which it is exercised, should be related to the orientations and historic legacy of the Congregation. As animator you are invited to live this service inspired by the spirit and charism of our community. Here are some aspects of the animation that we need to consider, knowing that our first task is to put in the hands of the Lord the service which the community has asked of you.
Animation of the Spiritual life: "contemplate the redemptive love of God" To contemplate the love of God is one mission in your service to the community. Look for a personal deep spiritual life and be consistent in your life. From your contemplative attitude, be more authentic and convinced of your invitation to fidelity to our common vocation and mission, and to the project of Apostolic life assumed by the community and by each sister. Prepare yourself to animate and motivate, by example and by word, the prayer life. See that this life of prayer is the heart of the life of the sisters and community and that this is the spirit in which we live our consecration.
Animation of the Fraternal life: "live the redemptive love of God" We want to create in our communities an atmosphere of family spirit where we all can accept and live with the differences. Respect and patience with your sisters will motivate everybody to do the same. Practicing forgiveness and conversion and avoiding attitudes of superiority will help to the unity of the community. Obeying the community, favoring communication, dialogue and understanding, being humble enough to receive the observation of your sisters in the community are some of the attitudes that will help to live in the redemptive love of God.
Animation of the Mission: "Announce the love of God" In order to build community life, which is truly based on a common mission, encourage the sisters to value and to respect the moments when the community comes together to share, reflect and pray. Inevitably this requires that each sister collaborates and gives the necessary time to this with an attitude of interest and participation. Depending on the concrete circumstances of the community, promote a style of community life which is open to other persons and outside realities, always careful, to preserve the intimate moments necessary for the life of the community.
The true cell of religious life, what gives visibility and consistency is not the Major community, but the local community. And the local community, to exist, requires a minimal structure in which the superior is a key element. What can we do to have good local superiors? Maybe we can think in giving them a good formation, but this is not enough. We are not managers of a big company. The service of authority is a constituent element of Religious Life and as such has to be accessible to the majority. The root of the superior service, is tin two decisions of the heart that are intimately linked to what we call vocation. The desire to keep the community religiously alive and awake The appreciation of the sisters, an appreciation which is to love, to be interested in their lives, to wish them the best and to take seriously their vocation.
These two aspects are rooted in a strong conviction of faith: we are not together by chance or because we have chosen each other, but because the Lord has chosen us and He counts on us and on our community to serve Him and to work for the Kingdom. Without this conviction, these desires and these attitudes, all formation is useless and the task of the superior becomes frustrating and superfluous. A sister, motivated in her vocation, can serve the community as local superior as follow: 1.Convoke your sisters to community meeting and prayer. Be sure that there is a rhythm for both things. Prepare the agenda of the meeting, insist in the participation. There will be always reasons to suspend the meeting, to arrive late to the prayer… to much work to do… the demands of the mission… But your mission is to remember and to convoke to insist in the participation. Without community meeting and prayer, the community will die.
2.Have a community project, revise and evaluate it. Emphasize what you want to live during this year and some actions that you can do. 3.Review together periodically the economy. See how are we doing, are we adjusting to our budget? Are we living in solidarity with the poor? 4.Dont be afraid to make decisions when required, but count always with the opinion of the sisters. If you can arrive to a consensus, excellent, but remember that not always this is possible and not always can we satisfied everybody. 5.Have interest for what happens in the rest of PPC Asia. Make accessible to everybody the information, news, that come from PPC Asia and from the Congregation.
6.Be attentive to your sisters. Sometimes is enough a small question, showing interest for your sister, for how is she and what is she living. Be available if they want to share with you. Approach them when you detect some problem and if you cannot handle it, invite the sister to talk with the formator/Major Superior. 7.Pray, Present to the Lord the responsibility that He has confided to you. Dont forget that the community belongs to Him. The sisters are the most beautiful thing that He posses and He asks you to take care of them. Give thanks for such a great and undeserved confidence. COURAGE, It is not so difficult. I am convinced that with these small indications a local superior can do a great service and to significantly contribute that the community be a home where the sisters feel welcomed, loved, understood, challenged… A more human, religious and fraternal home.
But it is your providence, O Father, that steers its course, because you have given it a path in the sea, and a safe way through the waves..." 1 (Wisdom 14:3)
The first characteristic of the ss.cc. style of leadership is that our work is Gods work. We want to be leaders who serve apostolically trusting radically in the Good God. We can speak of leadership which trusts in providence. The writings of our founders tell us the deep faith that they had in the Provident God. The profound crises which they experienced, both outside (economic, political, social, religious) and within the newborn community (lack of finances, inexperience, health problems etc) led them to appeal to God in radical faith. Radical confidence in God the Father, also enables us to trust ourselves and others: the sisters with whom we share our life and those whom we are called to serve. This basic attitude is what distinguished and colored the way they exercised authority and animated the community.
Authority that is inspired and inspiring The Spirit of the Lord is upon me... (Lk. 4: 18).
Trust in the love of God opens us to the action of his Spirit. A heart which possesses a deep conviction and experience of the love of God, can exercise the ministry of authority with freedom and generosity. The founders continuously invite the Brothers and Sisters to allow themselves to be led by the Holy Spirit who creates deep communion, the family spirit and relationships that are close, simple and affectionate. Leadership that is open to the Holy Spirits action, recognizing him present in other people, especially the little ones, becomes a spiritual experience which nourishes and enriches community life and prayer. The exercise of leadership in and through the Spirit leads to a deeper living of ones vocation (Cf. RL, n. 29). The leader who wants to be an instrument of the Spirit at work in each person calls others to trust in Gods unconditional love, tries to find which is positive in each person and values the dignity of each human being.
Authority which offers its life So others might have life! For the Son of Man came not to be served but to serve, And to give his life a ransom for many (Mark 10:45)
Paschal presumes the experience of the cross and new birth according to the dynamic of the paschal mystery. It means living that attitude of the suffering servant who gave himself without limit accepting all the consequences. It means following Jesus who went so far as to have his Heart pierced on the cross ( Cf. Const #3). The consecration to the Sacred Hearts makes our apostolic leadership capable of generating life because we are united with the Fathers plan to save the world through love. Our leadership invites us to be witnesses of the paradox of death-life, and enable us to perceive, understand and accept, somehow, the sufferings and the crosses of our sisters as well as our own. To be paschal leaders involves a spirituality of life, the mystery of a new life that sprout where there is only death.
A service of authority which makes us act from our conscience you will be my witnesses... to the ends of the earth (Acts 1:8)
Leadership as witness in which there is consistency between doing and being. This kind of authenticity is clearly founded in the experience of the Fathers merciful love and the power of the Spirit at work in us. The authenticity of our life and work is inspired by the attitudes, options and tasks that led Jesus to the point of having his Heart transpierced on the Cross (Const, art. 3). Self-awareness in community is a basic aspect of a leaders authenticity. We have to really be ourselves rather than to play roles or wear masks. It is about seeing authority and any other ministry as our personal response to Gods call and not as a way to seek our own advantage. The leader must encourage growth. That involves helping people to know and accept themselves. The goodness and mercy of God that forgives, heals and lifts up, inviting us to himself, will always be the basis for the knowledge, acceptance and growth necessary to be authentic.
Indeed, in Christ Jesus I became your father through the Gospel (1 Corinthians 4:15b). Authority Which is Merciful and fruitful
A leader who lives in an ongoing relationship with the God of Jesus Christ, who is Father and Mother, makes his own Gods paternal and maternal way of relating. She does this in her openness and mercy, in her commitment and firmness. Simplicity and the family spirit are the characteristics of our relationships within our international Congregation, which desires to be open to all people. Our community life gives witness to the Gospel and makes our announcement of redeeming Love more convincing. (Const, art. 7) This family spirit becomes the best witness of Gods love which radiates from the community bearing fruit for the world and for the Congregation. Our awareness of the merciful tenderness of God leads us to become living witnesses of this tenderness by our understanding, gentleness, availability, sharing and hospitality.
Paternal-maternal leadership calls us to look once again at various aspects of our life. Here are some of them: Mercy, tenderness, compassion Be merciful as your heavenly Father is merciful. We must hear this call in our exercise of authority, so as to fulfill it with tenderness and compassion for the sisters that we accompany Attention to interiority A motherly-fatherly style of leadership demands that we give special attention to helping individuals as they grow and assimilate their lived experience. We are called to personalized authority, which knows how to integrate action with interiority and commitment with prayer. To be fruitful We are called to be instruments of life which is born from the creative love of God.
Authority that envisions the future and leads the community toward the future By faith he left Egypt, unafraid of the king's anger; for he persevered as though he saw him who is invisible (Hebrews 11:27)
Visionary leadership is idealistic, able to step back from the immediate, capable of envisioning different possibilities, intuitive, imaginative, creative and able to imagine a future that arouses hope. It means working at the level of both consciousness and unconsciousness, vision and dream. Given the challenges we experience in our lives, we need a critical consciousness. We need time in our own Motte dUsseau where we could envision responses, imagine the future, listen to the Lord so that we can make the necessary changes together in creative fidelity. The role of the leader is then to make the transition from the present to the future, to redefine reality and change it. To face new situations means somehow letting go of the past in order to seek the future. At times the hardest part is precisely letting go of traditional ways of understanding a situation. Often we think that the most habitual approach is what provides the most security.
Leadership with a critical conciseness and with initiative of changes Woe to you when all speak well of you, For that is what their ancestors Did to the false prophets (Luke 6:26)
Looking at our history, our charism and the challenges of today, we can speak of a style of leadership that is critical. It offers a style of leadership and authority in keeping with the message of Jesus and the essential values of the Gospel. Society and culture exercise a strong influence on us. This can happen even in very subtle ways. They shape our consciousness and little by little we find ourselves accepting values and behaviors which are out of sync with the Gospel and our life choices. Examples of such values would be denial of truth and the emphasis placed on comfort, the superfluous and pleasure. Our founders were always faithful to the Gospel. Article 5 of our Constitutions reminds us of the need to transform the world according to the criteria of the Gospel. We are called to develop a style of leadership and authority which is creative and which offers alternatives ways for living the Gospel according to our ss.cc. vocation. We could describe this kind of leadership as counter-cultural and non-conformist.
Authority that responds to inequality And works for justice Learn to do good; seek justice, Rescue the oppressed, Defend the orphan, plead for the widow (Isaiah 1:17)
Another characteristic that we see from our ss.cc. history and which has special relevance for our ministry in todays world is what we could call reparative or liberating leadership. This is leadership faithful to the mission of Christ and inspired by his love. It is sensitive to injustice and in solidarity with the poor. It promotes the transformation of hearts and works for a just and reconciled society. Our reparative-liberating work is a manifestation of Gods desire that people have life and have it abundantly (Const. N0 4). The Rule of Life presents two central elements of our ministry of leadership: its communal dimension and its liberating dimension. Liberating leadership reminds us that in our ministry we are called to create communion and to be apostles of Gods plan of love. Reparative and liberating leadership will lead us to confront reality.
Authority that is dialogical and co-responsible He called the twelve and began to send them out two by two, and gave them authority (Mark 6:7a)
A characteristic of the way we exercise leadership in the Congregation and in our ministry is that it is communal and participative. Even at a time when authority in the church and religious life was understood in a vertical sense, our founders were known to use expressions of trust, dialogue, consultation, care and respect for individuals. This characteristic of participative-co-responsible authority invites us to reflect on our role in the communities we serve. In this leadership, power is understood as service. Participative and co-responsible leadership involves dialogue which trusts others and delegates responsibilities for the good of the community we serve. Participative leadership means renouncing individual power and taking on authority in a co-responsible way, having a collaborative and interdependent attitude.
We are servants for a time who must receive from others and continue the mission of Jesus. Authority and leadership that is centered on ourselves can damage the unity and continuity of the community. We have to see our leadership as a ministry that finds its origin and energy in the ss.cc. community, which is the foundation for mission. Some characteristics of the apostolic leadership: to promote fraternity, dialogue, co-responsibility and team work; to love others so as to work with them more effectively. The key to this new style of leadership is the distribution of work among all the members of the team.
POSSIBLE REACTIONS TO PROBLEMS : 1. ESCAPE 2. HARDEN UP 3. FIGHT BACK 4. GET DROWNED 5. LAL (Look, Accept, Live)
HOW TO DEAL WITH CONFLICTS Conflict is inevitable and often good. 1.Helps to raise and address problems. 2.Energizes work to be done on the most appropriate issues. 3.Helps people to be real", it motivates them to participate. 4.Helps people to learn how to recognize and benefit from their differences. Conflict is not the same as discomfort. The conflict is not the problem - when conflict is poorly managed that is the problem.
SOME STEPS TO RESTORE THE ATMOSPHERE IN THE COMMUNITY WHEN THERE IS SOME CONFLICT CLARIFICATION WITH THE PERSONS IN CONFLICT MIGHT BE NECESSARY; CLARIFICATION AT T HE LEVEL OF THE WHOLE GROUP MIGHT BE INDICATED; MATERIAL CONDITIONS MIGHT HAVE TO BE IMPROVED; SOME RULES OF COMMON LIFE MIGHT HAVE TO BE ADAPTED TO NEW CIRCUMSTANCES; SOME DECISIONS MIGHT NEED TO BE MADE.
PROBLEMS….? P rophets: They help mold our future. R eminders: We are not self-sufficient; we need God and others for help. O pportunities: They pull us out of our routine and cause us to think creatively. B lessings: They open up doors we usually dont go through. L essons: Each new challenge will be our teacher. E verywhere: No place or person is excluded from them. M essages: They warn us about potential disaster. S olvable: No problem is without a solution.