By Br. Alfonce Kugwa
The Conference of Major Religious Superiors, (CMRS) has started the Formation of Formators Programme that is being carried out at Holy Trinity College in Harare. The programme that started in February 2018 with 14 students is meant to train men and women religious who will be assigned with the responsibility of formation in their respective congregations and dioceses in Zimbabwe.
The Formation of Formators Programme focuses on areas such as anthropology of Christian vocation, human development, sexuality, celibacy, religious life and intimacy, scripture, Christology and Mariology, spirituality of prayer, social morality and spirituality. Culture and diversity, group dynamics, child protection, leadership skills, Canon law and consecrated life, principles and methods in religious formation in Africa, cosmology and ecology are also covered. The programme also covers contemporary challenges of religious life as well as vocation assessment and report writing.
The programme is expected to run for nine months although the CMRS Secretary Sr. Clara Mangwengwe CPS, stated that the Conference was considering this as the basis for running spiritual renewal programmes for both initial and on-going formation in the country.
“This is envisaged to offer opportunities for spiritual growth and renewal so that religious men and women become more effective in their ministry of evangelization,” Said Sr. Mangwengwe.
Students attending the programme were drawn from congregations such as Sisters of the Child Jesus , SJI, Little Children of the Blessed Lady LCBL, Franciscan Missionaries for Southern Africa FMSA, Order of Friars Minor OFM, Order of Friars Minor Capuchin OFM.Cap, Brothers of St. Paul, Sisters of the Divine Child, Congregatio Jesu Cj also known as Maryward Sisters, Missionary Daughters of Calvary, Servants of Mary the Queen AMR as well as the Diocese of Gokwe.
The Formation of Formators Programme has Sr. Bernadette Tariro Kuvheya LCBL as the first Coordinator working with Fr. Joaquin Bejar who is the Executive member in Charge of Formation.
The Programme is funded through local initiatives by local congregations under the thrust of facilitating a vibrant formation of those who join religious life. Sr. Mangwengwe went on to say CMRS was overwhelmed by the amount of support and collaboration expressed by the Zimbabwe Catholic Bishops’ Conference, ZCBC in running the programme as witnessed by the presence of a candidate from Gokwe Diocese.