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"This is what collective intelligence is all about..."

By Soccom Korea

Seoul, Korea, 9 June 2024 -- The 18th Provincial Chapter of Korea Province came to a close on Saturday, 9 June. As we reported in our previous news, the Chapter was a preparation for the 29th General Chapter (to be held in Turin, Italy, from February 16 to April 12, 2025), and it was a time for 34 Salesians to gather their hearts and wisdom for five days and four nights, focusing on the theme "Passionate about Jesus Christ, Dedicated to Young people."

In order to contribute to the General Chapter, proposals were prepared to recover the values of religious life, to find paths of spiritual renewal and spiritual accompaniment, to strengthen community life, and to witness of our Salesianity. Contributions were also made to the General Chapter on the position of the Province in terms of the charism and mission shared with the Salesian Family and the laity, and in terms of youth ministry. In addition, proposals were made for amendments to several articles of the Constitution as well as the Regulations that directly affect Salesian religious life.

An important outcome was the election of one delegate to represent the Korean Province at the 29th General Chapter. Fr. Marcelo Baek Kwanghyun was elected as the delegate, and Fr. Peter Kim Sangyoon and Samuel Yoo Myungil were selected as first and second substitutes, respectively, in case the Delegate is unable to attend the General Chapter due to unavoidable circumstances.

In his homily at the closing Mass, Fr. Timothy Choi Woncheol, Provincial, expressed his deep gratitude to all those who worked so hard to prepare and celebrate the provincial chapter, especially to the two pre-novices who assisted the secretary in taking the minutes. "Our Provincial Chapter has been concluded successfully," he remarked, "and now we must all strive to participate more closely in the General Chapter, to find ways to live out in concrete ways our 'Passionate about Jesus Christ, Dedicated to Young people.' I ask you, as you return to your communities now, to remember that you are at the forefront of this."

"It was a very good time for me because I had heard a lot of stories from the seniors who had helped with the previous provincial chapter and acted as an assistant secretary...., but I saw this one for myself, and I thought that this was nicely ordered, this is what collective intelligence is all about. I really felt that the spirit of Synodalitas was alive." This was the assessment of Francis Park Sungryung, a pre-novice who assisted the secretary in taking minutes.

Among the achievements of the Provincial Chapter, the collaborative and smart work system was used to firmly establish the "paperless chapter." This system was introduced at the last Provincial Chapter two years ago, but if it was a bit clumsy, then, this time, all the participants utilized it well, almost at a mastery level. As a result, we ended the Chapter without using a single piece of paper, except for one page that we had to print out to sign the participant list. At least in Korea, the phrase "I Salesiani non sapendo di fare i figli sanno fare i fogli" ("The Salesians don't know how to make children, but they know how to consume paper," a popular Italian joke) is no longer true.


 

 

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