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Spirituality of Systemic Change? Guillermo Campuzano, CM DePaul University Misery is not an accident… the solution to misery cannot be accidental either…

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Presentation on theme: "Spirituality of Systemic Change? Guillermo Campuzano, CM DePaul University Misery is not an accident… the solution to misery cannot be accidental either…"— Presentation transcript:

1 Spirituality of Systemic Change? Guillermo Campuzano, CM DePaul University Misery is not an accident… the solution to misery cannot be accidental either…

2 The journey continues… in the footsteps of our founders “LET US GO TO THE POOR” B. Frederic Ozanam Continuity same spirit Rupture Charismatic Hermeneutics

3 From our Founding Spiritual Experience To a Spiritual Vincentian Movement To a School of Spirituality Spirituality of Systemic Change To “Drink from our own Wells” St. Bernard of Clairvaux A New Spirituality to Face the Challenges of the XXI Century

4 A member of the family…An outsider speaking… VINCENTIAN Institutional Crisis in the USA… - “When does suffering lead to life?” Our When - Where is life calling us to go? Our Where - Are we still willing to go (do we have the energy) where life is calling us with urgency? Our How

5 Where, When, How of the Vincentian Family Today? Vincentian Family Systemic Change Charism  Spirituality

6 An Experience of the Spirit (MR 11)  

7 The beginning of the spirituality of systemic change can be in ACTION… but it always implies a deep conversion! Mark 1:15 Spirituality is our door to enter into the heart of reality…

8 Spirit / Spirituality soul (anima) of the identity essence of our being energy of the mission starting point and source of life Charism Possesses the necessary elements for us to become whole/holy

9 Implications of Having a Shared Charism Spiritual affinity Need for collaboration (VC 54) Relationship and Service (CfL 55) Common conscience and determination Communal sense of belonging Common Faith Experience

10 Vincentian School of Spirituality (SC) 1. A common experience of the Spirit. 2. A methodology: a proper way to read and interpret reality – key to our Vincentian Spirituality 3. Elements of diverse/common identity 4. A doctrine 5. A Life Style 6. A specific way to develop our mission: using all our economic, structural and human resources to GO to the POOR of today. “This is my faith this is my experience ” (SVDP Letter to Fr. Codoing in Rome - II, 282).

11 A school of spirituality presupposes a particular emphasis on the mystery… “it is a reordering of the great axes of Christianity in order for us to understand and act accordingly in the present time” (G. Gutierrez) What is this particular emphasis of the Christian Mystery in our Spirituality of Systemic Change?

12 In search of an ETHOS – global home- where the POOR has also a space In Greek ethos means existential human dwelling a place that is our habitat where we feel at home! Our own humanness (culture) is our ETHOS… Our world is our ETHOS too… our common dwelling. To understand this from a systemic perspective in clue for our discussion…

13 Systemic Change is a specific way in which we -VF- want to transform our human ETHOS… our world so that ALL can feel at home in this human dwelling with a minimum of peace and justice! We believe that through SC we can contribute (locally and globally) to articulate a minimum consensus to save and regenerate our common home, today crucified due to ecological devastation, international systemic injustice, violence… we are called today to ensure a future for this inextricably linked binomial: Earth-Humanity

14 REGENERATE… Earth - Humanity REGENERATE… Earth - Humanity 1. The cultural-social fabric -pluralism- 2. The religious fabric interreligious dialogue and collaboration in a post religious world 3. The Ecological Fabric theological and anthropological ecology and ecological theology and anthropology

15 Spirituality of SC More than something that is already happening is a possibility to update our identity…to overcome our crisis before it is too late… 1. We need to overcome our doubts and fears towards this concept: it is impossible to build a spirituality of SC if we do not assume its meaning and challenges 2. If we want the poor to embrace this spirituality too…we need to be attentive that SC is not, in any way, an oppressive or colonialist practice…

16 3. We need to overcome a romantic understanding of SC… to avoid calling everything we do SC -with a simple make up of our old works and ways- I honestly don’t think that breaking the cycle of poverty is that simple, and we need to understand the negative implications for the one who tries to break these cycles. “We can lose friends and reputation!” 4. To assume prophetic courage… to act, think, pray, and live together in a new way… always connecting VF and SC

17 Closing points to enlarge the context… to avoid the (personal and institutional) pre-text John 5: 1-14

18 1. Spirituality and Faith Faith: primal urge to give our hearts away, to trust, to invest, to embrace, to love (William Lynch, Images of Faith) Opposite: fury, fear, suicide/death (H. Richard Niebuhr, Radical Monotheism and Western Culture) Adult faith is not stable, but in permanent revolution. Keeps involving heartbreak, and thus the movement towards other/Other in a self/giving way…

19 2. Metanoia… Without METANOIA the only thing we will do is a simplistic make-up of our mission… to perpetuate our old practices… and our oppressive ways… If we do not see with new lenses we won’t be able to understand where we are called to go…

20 3. Prophecy… God talking to the Heart 1. Connection between the primal force (spirituality) of the prophet and his-her imagination 2. Imagination – constructing images of what the world should be like, creative, moving, shapes experience, 3. Chief characteristic: can penetrate reality… The IRONY -the world will disappoint us, but it is worth investing in-

21 4. I stand with Francis… From Francis of Assisi to Francis of Rome Recovering the Utopia of the Poor… The meaning of this papacy for our Charism… his own challenges to our life style in the USA and Canada… The Spirit of Vatican II: from 33 years of “Hermeneutics of Retrenchment” to 6 months of the “Hermeneutics of Mission/Reign of God”- to retake the voice of the Spirit for all of us –the Church of today- The option of JUSTICE: The Poor – Young People

22 1. Identify concrete seeds of hope in your life, community, congregation… in relation to this binomial: Vincentian Family and Systemic Change 2. How can the Vincentian Family effectively contribute to save and regenerate our - existential dwelling - ETHOS: humanity/earth 3. Discuss some of the essential elements of the Vincentian School of Spirituality from a Systemic Change perspective

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