Franciscan Network for the Mediterranean

In the Republic of Malta, on 6, 7 and 8 September 2019, those responsible for Evangelising Mission and JPIC in the Franciscan entities bordering the Mediterranean Sea met to reflect on the possibility of creating a Mediterranean Franciscan network.

 

Our meeting had two parts:

  1. A reflection on our presence in the Mediterranean (being and doing).
  2. A sharing of our evangelising practices in order to reach a decision.

 

I. Reflection

Our evangelisation is not only talking about Jesus but above all, continuing his practice. And his practice is a praxis of mercy, solidarity, compassion, inclusion, welcoming and dialogue. That is why our evangelising method must be: proclamation with life, with solidarity, with dialogue and with joyful and festive celebrations (cf. Mt 9:15).

We Franciscans – like Jesus at Cana of Galilee – are called to change the water of death in the Mediterranean into a wine of welcome, of joy, of celebration. We are called to be instruments of a culture of inclusion, of dialogue, of working for life, of recovery of dignity.

We are called to work in an organised network, a network of help, of solidarity, which unites our different entities that border the Mediterranean. For this reason, in order to be able to do community work, in a network, between our various entities, we must initiate some processes:

  1. A conversion of mind and heart
  2. Undertake a study of the phenomena of migration, youth, dialogue, ecology, violence, etc.
  3. Implement training processes to be able to deal with these phenomena.
  4. Trigger processes, instruments, of accompaniment
  5. Create support structures to sustain the work we want to do.

 

II. Activities and decisions

After the previous reflections, we set ourselves to the task of sharing the activities that we carry out in our entities. We examined where ecology, migration, human rights, ecumenical and inter-religious dialogue, youth ministry, vocation ministry appeared.

From these activities, we decided to create three networks:

  1. Migrants
  2. Dialogue/peace
  3. Young people

 

Once these decisions had been taken, the participants met in interest groups to define actions, set schedules and write up various communications that will be sent to the decision-making bodies of each of the participating entities.