03/02/2014

Anthropologia Cordis’ seminar opens in Taubate

On SunAntropologia-cordis-0 1day evening the theological seminar Anthropologia Cordis opened in Taubate in the midst of a Brazilian heat wave. The seminar, prepared over a period of two and half years, with the participation of all parts of the Congregation, started with a Eucharist presided by John van den Hengel, vicar general of the Congregation and the person responsible within the General Government for the sector of Spirituality.

Fifty-three members from five continents are participating in this week-long reflection on the underlying anthropology of Dehonian spirituality. The Congregation is aware that we find ourselves in a critical time in its history but also in the Church. Much has changed in the last fifty to sixty years in the way that we understand the human self.

Antropologia-cordis-0 2The seminar seeks to explore this topic of anthropology, keeping in mind that our members come from five continents, 41 countries. In full awareness of the geographical shift that the Congregation is undergoing, the seminar is organized along continental lines. Each continent has been asked to reflect on the anthropology stimulating their continents and their individual countries. With the shift of the membership more and more to the South, it was felt that we can no longer think out of only one mode. People have called for an end of eurocentrism, an end of thinking only from a European perspective. The ways of perceiving the human in the different parts of the world will in the future have to receive greater attention in the other parts. The conference was called to allow these different anthropologies to enter into conversation. That is why the method chosen was that of a seminar. Each continent is asked to present but also to listen to the other continents and seek to explore how these differences of cultures can find a unity of experience and expression.

In his introduction to the seminar, Fr. John reminded the students, present at the opening, of the challenges that this new situation will give them: “You represent the future… On you the Congregation counts to be the bearers of the tradition and legacy of Fr. Dehon. We need your voices to take the Congregation into this post-modern world.”

The seminar will run from this Sunday, February 2 till Friday February 7.