More than 180 Marists from across Australia met in Adelaide last weekend for the National Assembly of the Marist Association.
Young adults, retirees, working men and women, married couples with infants and Marist Brothers came together for the assembly
Joe McCarthy, the Director of Belonging and Development for the Marist Association and steering committee chair, said the number of attendees exceeded initial expectations.
“When we began plans for this assembly 18 months ago, we thought that 100 people might attend, but as time progressed, more and more people registered. We ended up changing the initial plans for where to gather and move it into the gymnasium next door!”
The Assembly was held at Sacred Heart College in Somerton Park. Steve Byrne, principal of the college, said: “It is fantastic to host an event such as this which is big picture, and essentially about the wider Marist family imagining itself into the future.”
The Marist Association of St Marcellin Champagnat is a new way that Marist community is being experienced and deepened between people who identify strongly with the order’s spirituality and mission.
Mr McCarthy described it as “one way in the greater scheme of things that people are at home as Church … belonging to a charism and spiritual family that has a rich tradition, which is now expressing a new ecclesiology and morphing into a contemporary expression of communion.”
There are more than 850 people across Australia who have joined the Marist Association of St Marcellin Champagnat, including over 100 Marist Brothers.
Pending endorsement of the formal petition presently being considered in Rome (submitted by the General Council of the Marist Brothers), it will play a role in the life of the Catholic Church as a Public Association of Christ’s Faithful.
The governing council of the Marist Association, formed largely from the membership, holds the ultimate governance responsibilities for the core Marist ministries in Australia, including education, solidarity, and youth ministry. The council is also responsible for fostering the "spiritual family" dimension within and between members of the association.
National gathering of Marists (Marist Association)