General Curia: Strengthening Jesuit lay partnership

From 14 to 20 May the Assistancy Coordinators of the Social Apostolate held their annual meeting at the General Curia in Rome. The first two days went in brainstorming sessions at a joint reflection with members of the recently appointed Commission on Social Justice (CSJ). This Commission has been entrusted with the task of reviewing Decree 3 of GC 34 (?Our mission and justice?) and preparing specific recommendations for the next General Congregation. The second part of the meeting was devoted to a broad reflection on Jesuit lay partnership in the Social Apostolate. The presence of a group of six lay persons, women and men, engaged in works of the Social Apostolate and representing all the regions of the world, was a distinctly new feature this year. ?The lay partners present were enriched by the sharing of experiences from so many different cultural settings, all premised on a sense of shared mission with the Society of Jesus?, says Margaret Martinez from Malaysia. Margaret hopes that from the meeting ?some broad guidelines will emerge, which recognize the unique situations in each region and deepen the commitment to formation of lay partners in Ignatian spirituality?. In addition, the group of Coordinators confirmed its support to the ?Nairobi Team? which has been entrusted with the overall organisation of the Ignatian Jesuit presence in Kenya at the World Social Forum 2007. The meeting was also an occasion for Latin American, African and Asian participants and members of the ?Red Xavier? (a network of European development NGOs linked to the Society of Jesus) to hold a number of useful meetings with Frank Turner SJ, director of European Jesuit Social Centre, OCIPE. The purpose of these meetings was to explore possible advocacy initiatives at the European level. [HL60502]