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“Participating in the 2019 WUCWO Board Meeting contributed to my growth and preparation in organisational work, and that means understanding Christ’s call to serve beyond the borders of the country and to work as the Universal Church.”
I feel very excited and grateful to God our Lord for the opportunity he gave me, through the mission of AMSIF, to support the World Union of Catholic Women’s Organisations (WUCWO) by contributing my work, representing Mexico, Latin America and the Caribbean.
Today, we women have the great challenge of always remaining faithful in the faith in Christ, committed to the mission of evangelisation and united in service, as a big ecclesial community.
The WUCWO Board Meeting in Rome has been for me a motivating experience and I learnt a lot from it; what this means in my life is more than living an experience, it is living the encounter with Christ through the women of the world. This entails facing an even greater challenge and makes you feel part of the world, part of the Universal Church.
The WUCWO Board meeting was structured in working sessions and spiritual and formative moments.
• Work by Regions
In order to know what is happening with women in different regions of the world, we presented an analysis of the reality in each region. It was interesting to find the coincidences in the lives of women from different continents and at the same time to realise the enormous gap as for freedom, development and opportunities between us.
We asked ourselves: What can we offer and what do we need to receive in order to carry out our resolutions? The coincidences are evident, as we all want to:
- Share among our organisations, the riches of what wedo.
- Disseminate in the best way our work and invite others tojoin.
- Communicate our message to theworld.
- Join forces to respond to the needs of thistime.
• Resolutions adopted by WUCWO
In the second working session we set ourselves the task of making visible the most pressing aspects that we have to work for, such as the “abuse” of: our common home, the most vulnerable members of the family and violence against women.
We received formation on the topic of “Abuse and Vulnerable People” that we could simultaneously share virtually with some members of our organisations. Our groups and institutes are mostly made up of vulnerable people so we must work with a great sense of responsibility, transparency and accountability in order to protect the physical, moral and spiritual integrity of the people who trust us.
Everything that happens to human beings in any region of the world has repercussions and consequences for everyone. The abuse of human beings is related to the damage to our planet, which is our common home, so reconstruction work in both senses must be thorough.
It is in this context that the call we receive from God our Lord to live a “Path to Holiness” gets relevant; we need to work alongside and accompany those who need it most, those who weep in social indifference, those who suffer injustice; we need to work for world peace and to listen to the cry of the earth that is mysteriously represented on the faces of the suffering.
Our path is to approach our fellow human beings, especially women, and to reach families through them. We also need to promote and support the initiatives of those who work in these areas and to really involve ourselves in this task.
• WUCWO Committees
This stage of work led us deep into WUCWO. This, in addition to being interesting, seemed important to me, because it is about being part of the decisions that are made for the better functioning of WUCWO.
• Spiritual moment: “Path to Holiness”
It was conducted by Cardinal Tagle, who, with understandable language and based on the commandment “Love God and your neighbour as yourself,” led us to discover that holiness has two faces: the face of God and the face of our neighbour. God’s face is beauty and holiness. Attracting others through the beauty of our lives is holiness.
This moment was most significant for all the participants. We were open, ready and prepared, and thanks to the presence of the Holy Spirit, who spoke to us with tenderness, in silence and in reflection, this was a key moment where Jesus manifested Himself with His peace and His great love.
• Visits to the Dicastery for Promoting Integral Human Development and the Dicastery for the Laity, Family and Life
We had the opportunity to have a participation in both dicasteries, presenting some aspects of our region. In the new dicastery for Promoting Integral Human Development we were introduced to the topic of migrants, refugees and victims of human trafficking. In the dicastery for the Laity, Family and Life we were encouraged to recognise the gift of being Catholic, to recognise the way to determine cultural change, and to live our mission as women.
• Our meeting with Pope Francis and visit to the Vatican
Living this encounter was a special gift for all those present. The emotion of being physically close to Pope Francis, added to the atmosphere of friendship and affection that prevailed in the group, was undoubtedly the perfect closing for this meeting of women from all over the world in search of filling our wells with the living water that Jesus offers us, to return and share it in our regions, countries and organisations.
I thank all the people who with their support have contributed to make me part of the WUCWO Board. I thank God our Father for this enriching opportunity.
From this WUCWO Board meeting I receive three important things, the trust, friendship and grace of God our Lord through my fellow Board Members, and I feel a great satisfaction to have participated in this meeting.
Lourdes Espinoza de Araiza
Vice President of Latin America and the Caribbean