Die vorliegende Arbeit versucht in Verbindung von soziologischer, politik- und wirtschaftswissenschaftlicher Perspektive das amerikanische Beschäftigungswachstum um die Jahrtausendwende zu analysieren. Die Arbeit skizziert in einem ersten Anlauf das "amerikanische Beschäftigungswunder", indem seine wesentlichen Eigenschaften im Blick zurück auf die zeithistorische Schichtung des amerikanischen Wirtschaftsbooms verbunden werden. Dabei werden sechs sich wesentlich verstärkende Faktoren für den amerikanischen Wirtschaftsboom zusammengefasst: Diese in den Vordergrund gerückten Politikfelder sind zum ersten eine insbesondere über die Senkung der durchschnittlichen Stundenlöhne erreichte Niedriglohnpolitik von Mitte der 70er bis weit in die 90er Jahre, die die Beschäftigungsexpansion erst ermöglichte. Zweitens ein seit Anfang der 90er Jahre gelungenes makroökonomisches Management, drittens ein ebenfalls seit Beginn des abgelaufenen Jahrzehnts boomender Aktienmarkt, der sowohl Kapital für die Unternehmen bereitstellte als auch mit fortlaufender Dauer der Aktienhausse über eine Wohlstandsvermehrung der Aktienbesitzer einen Nachfrageschub auslöste. Viertens geoökonomische Spezifika, die die Vormachtstellung der amerikanischen Ökonomie und damit verbunden die immer noch oder mehr denn je bestehende Stellung des US-Dollars als Leitwährung auf den globalen Finanzmärkten betonen. Dabei werden Prosperitätsgewinne unterstellt, die für den sowohl nach außen als auch nach innen wachsenden Euro-Raum in der globalen Konkurrenz erst zu erringen sind. Fünftens wird gezeigt, dass die erfolgreichen Innovationsprozesse im Dienstleistungsbereich wie in den Informationsindustrien in regionalen Agglomerationen verankert sind, deren Beschreibung für eine moderne "schumpeterianische Innovationsökonomie" gewinnbringend erscheint. Der sechste Faktor ist der seit 1996 zu beobachtende Produktivitätsanstieg, der bislang immer als Achillesferse in den Vereinigten Staaten in Relation zu den europäischen Nationen angesehen wurde. Wichtig ist, dass diese Faktoren sich in der Realität zum Teil zeitlich überlappen bzw. die Teilpolitiken sich mehr oder weniger beeinflussen, um im Endeffekt in einem sich wechselseitig anfeuernden Zusammenspiel erst den langanhaltenden Boom zu bewirken. Die Erkenntnis, dass Produktivität die entscheidende Variable zur Beurteilung des Verbreitungsgrades der aufstrebenden und profitablen Branchen in den USA wird, während die Netzwerkspezifika das wirklich Neue am Typus der neuen Ökonomie darstellen, wird genutzt, um in verschiedenen Sektoren Zentralisierungs- und Dezentralisierungstendenzen mit ökonomischen Attrahierungseffekten für die USA zu diskutieren. Der Blick geht dann auf die Veränderungen der Arbeitswelt – die Auf- und Abstiegsprozesse, die durch die neuen Technologien, Märkte und Arbeitsverhältnisse ausgelöst werden. So wird die Innen- und Unterseite der neuen Ökonomie sichtbar, was zu einer entscheidenden Wendung dieser Arbeit überleitet. Fokussiert wird nun die Verteilungsfrage, um die Aufmerksamkeit neu auf die Beschäftigungsdebatte zu lenken. In diesem Abschnitt wird das Kernstück des "workfare-state" der EITC (Earned Income Tax Credit) vorgestellt, aber auch die vermeintlich "weicheren Faktoren" wie Bildungsressourcen und Nachhaltigkeitsstruktur des Wachstum erörtert. Dabei wird nicht vergessen, die relative Erfolgsgeschichte erhöhter weiblicher Erwerbstätigkeit und qualifizierter Erwerbstätigkeit in den Vereinigten Staaten zu dokumentieren. Dienstleistungsgesellschaften können nur im Zusammenhang mit dem Wandel von privaten Lebensformen und unterschiedlichen Individualisierungsprozessen in den einzelnen Kulturräumen einer umfassenden Betrachtung unterzogen werden. Eine wesentliche Aufgabe in Deutschland wird es sein, die Transformation von unbezahlter in bezahlte Arbeit, zum Beispiel auch im Haushaltsbereich zu forcieren. Bisher folgte Deutschland eher dem Modell des desintegrierten Sozialstaates mit traditionellem Familienmodell und "do-it-yourself-Kultur". Hier liegt die soziologische Herausforderung dieser Arbeit: mit der Verknüpfung von sozial-, politik- und wirtschaftswissenschaftlicher Argumentation auf diesen Strukturwandel von Wachstum, Beschäftigung und Lebensstil zu reagieren. Die Arbeit schließt mit einer klaren Stellungnahme gegen die Subventionierung von Niedriglöhnen und einem Plädoyer für eine geld- und wachstumspolitisch abgesicherte Qualitäts-offensive auf breiter Front, vor allem bei den Dienstleistungen und für eine entschiedene Rückkehr zur makroökonomischen Moderation in Europa. ; By linking sociological, political and economical perspectives this dissertation tries to analyze the growth within the American employment market at the turn of the millennium. It provides a rough draft of this so-called 'job-miracle' by examining its key characteristics in light of North America's contemporary economical history . Six major factors, still increasing, explain this boom: 1. a low-wage policy - achieved through major wage-cutting - from the middle of the 70's up until the late 90's made this job expansion at all possible 2. a functioning macroeconomic management, having been started in the early 90's 3. a booming stock market ever since the late 90's, providing not only the necessary financial resources for corporations but also triggering a huge demand through the growing wealth of stock-owners 4. geo-economic specifics, emphasizing the supremacy of the U.S. economy and the U.S.- Dollar as key currency in global financial markets – implicating prosperity profits that the internally and externally growing Euro 'space' has to aquire in the global competition 5. the seemingly useful description of successful innovations within the service sector and the information industry and their roots in regional agglomerates, in terms of a modern "schumpeterian innovation-economy" 6. the increasing productivity (since 1996), being the U.S.'s "Achilles heel" compared to the European Nations Important here is the aspect that these factors in reality partly overlay or that certain political decisions influence each other and thereby generate this extended boom through mutual interaction. Understanding productivity as the crucial variable to assess the expansion of the rising and profitable industries in the U.S. (network-specifics representing the actual 'new' within the 'new' economy) leads to a discussion of centralizing and de-centralizing tendencies in certain divisions and their economic effects on the U.S. This is followed by a closer observation of the changes within the 'work space' – rises and falls generated by new technologies, markets and labor relations. By showing the inside and the underside of this new type of economy, the work now concentrates on the problems of distribution, focusing mainly on the political discussion about labor. Besides introducing the core of the "workfare-state", the EITC (Earned Income Tax Credit), it also considers the allegedly "soft factors" of growth - such as education and structural duration. Another important factor to be mentioned is the relative success of increased female as well as skilled employment. A sufficient analysis of service-oriented societies is only possible in relation to changes within the ways of living and the various processes of individualization in certain cultural areas. One of the central tasks in Germany will be the transformation from non-paid to paid labor, i.e. in the house keeping sector. The temporary model of the disintegrated welfare-state revolving around the traditional family and "do-it-yourself-culture" is no longer functional. Herein lies the sociological challenge of the work: to react to the structural changes within growth, labor and ways of life by linking social, political and economical arguments. The thesis ends distinctly arguing against the subsidization of low wages and instead opting for a financially and politically safe "quality-offense", especially within the service sector and a return to macroeconomic moderation in Europe.
Issue 33.2 of the Review for Religious, 1974. ; Review ]or Religious is edited by faculty members of the School of Divinity of St. Louis University, the editorial offices being located at 612 Humboldt Building; 539 North Grand Boulevard; St. Louis, Missouri 63103. It is owned by the Missouri Province Educational Institute; St. Louis, Missouri. Published bimonthly and copy-right (~) 1974 by Review ]or Religious. Composed, printed, and manufactured in U.S.A. Second class postage paid at St. Louis, Missouri. Single copies: $1.75. Sub-scription U.S.A. and Canada: $6.00 a year; $11.00 for two years; other countries, $7.00 a year, $13.00 for two years. Orders should indicate whether they are for new or renewal subscriptions and should be accompanied by check or money order payable to Review ]or Religious in U.S.A. currency only. Pay no money to persons claiming to represent Review Jor Religious. Change of address requests should include former address. R. F. Smith, S.J. Everett A. Diederich, S.J. Joseph F. Gallen, S.J. Editor Associate Editor Questions and Answers Editor March 1974 Volume 33 Number 2 Renewals, new subscriptions, and changes of address should be sent to Review for Religious; P.O. Box 6070; Duluth, Minnesota 55802. Correspondence with the editor and the associate editor together with manuscripts, books for review, and materials for "Subject Bibliography for Religious" should be sent to Review for Religious; 612 Humboldt Building; 539 North Grand Boulevard; St. Louis, Missouri 63103. Questions for answering should be sent to Joseph F. Gallen, S.J.; St. Joseph's Church; 321 Willings Alley; Philadelphia, Pennsylvania 19106. Directed Prayer and the Founding Charism Norbert Brockman, S.M. Father Norbert Brockman is a staff member of the Marianist Center; 4435 East Patterson Road; Dayton, Ohio 45430. Among the growing movements among American religious in the past few years has been the directed retreat. In increasing numbers, religious have placed themselves under a director who has guided their meditation for periods as long as thirty days.1 The movement owes much to the Jesuits, who have taken leadership throughout the countr~ in reviving an approach to the retreat that is closely linked with their own renewal and spirituality.2 There have been spinooffs from the directed retreat movement that sug-gest that directed retreats are much more than a passing fad, although for some they will take on that character. The first of the side benefits of the directed retreat movement has been that religious of a number of congregations, especially women, are being trained in the method and approach of directing prayer. The Jesuits have established centers for this purpose, and programs for training, using the Ignatian retreat, are well patronized. A congequence of this is the flowering of directed retreats among women religious,, and the better training of for-mation personnel capable of working with mature nuns. Secondly, the directed retreat seems to bring many religious to long-term spiritual direction. Foi" the first time, for many religious, ~it has been possible--in a directed retreat--to consider spiritual direction as some- 1See, for example, Margaret Baker, H.V.M., "My Experience of a Directed Retreat," Review for Religious, v. 31 (1972), pp. 573-7; Sister Christine Freed, R.G.S., "I Feel like Singing Forever," Review ]or Religious, v. 32 (1973), pp. 1379-1384. '-'Thomas E. Clarke, SJ., "The Ignatian Exercises---Contemplation and Discernment," Review ]or Religious, v. 31 (1972), pp. 62-9. 257 258 / Review ]or Religious, Volume 33, 1974/2 thing other than crisis intervention. While one can comment only impres-sionistically, it seems that a real phenomenon of the past three years has been the increased desire among religious for spiritual direction.:' While the pattern is not so clear as to the expectations.of the religious seeking direction, the question of growth in prayer is always a serious considera-tion. The direction of prayer itself has an ancient and honorable tradition in the Church. From the earliest days of Christianity, the spiritual novice submitted himself or herself to a spiritual guide under whose direction growth in the life of prayer was undertaken. The stories of the fathers of the desert reinforce this strongly, and direction in prayer was for them an all-important issue in the relationship between novice and adept Chris-tian. The origins of this are obscure, but it would seem that the earliest forms of direction in prayer come from the baptismal catechesis, where the person responsible for the conversion of a neophyte not only helped in the education of the candidate for baptism, but particularly assumed the task of.teaching them the spiritual life. Together the two shared a period of prayer and 'fasting before the administration of the sacrament." In modern times, with the structure of the annual or other periodic retreat, various forms or styles of retreats came to the fore. The Ignatian r~treat has always had, in this period, a special place. It has been widely used b~, religious whose congregations are not Ignatian in spirituality, and its very basic Christian themes have made it equally.popular among lay-people. Although the preached retreat had become the predominant form, the notion of the directed retreat never died out, and its revival on such a large scale is in reality a return to an earlier Ignatian tradition. The Notion of the Directed Retreat The focus in the directed retreat is on the notion of "directed." It is a retreat in which the pfirticipant works with the retreat master in the man-ner of a s~iritual director. There is normally an hour-long interview each day, during which the retreatant's prayer is evaluated, directions and themes are~ given for further meditations, and the quality of the retreatant's prayer' is developed? As indicated above, although the nature of the directed retreat has ancient roots in the Church, it has been most characteristic o~ Jesuit re-aSee Sandra Marie Schneiders, I.H.M., "The 'Return' to Spiritual Direction," Spiritual Lile, v. 18 (1972), pp. 263-78. 4Michel Dujarier, Le parrainage des adultes aux trois premiers siO(les de l'Eglise (Paris: 1962), p. 377. 5Herbert F. Smith, S.J., "The Nature and Value of a Directed Retreat," Review ]or Religious;,v. 32 (1973), pp. 490-7. This article is available from Review ]or Religious as a separate reprint. Directed Prayer and the Founding Charism / ~259 treats in recent years. The point needs to be made that the nature of this retreat is simply the direction of prayer itself, adapted to the peculiar de-sign of a retreat, a period of time in which a person withdraws from ordi-nary pursuits to develop more consciously and deliberately in the spiritual life. Admittedly, among American religious other values have also entered in,, but this has always been understood as the essential purpose of retreat. For, a religious working far from the center of his province~ in a small community, the value of fellowship is a real one, for example. Some province retreats resemble a tribal gathering in this regard, and others use a workshop model rather than the traditional one of withdrawal for prayer. The comments that follow will be placed in the context of directed re-treats, but they might as easily apply to much of the real work of spiritual direction. Direction in prayer, even the special, concentrated form of di-rected meditation used in directed retreats, is the heart of spiritual direc-tion. An aspect of regular ~direction, even if relatively infrequent, is sug-gestions for prayer, the joint evaluation of movements in prayer, the dis-cernment of these movements, and help in heeding the call to new levels of prayer. The purpose of this article, however, is not to explore the nature and values, of the directed retreat, but to discuss its use to inculcate the values from the founding charism of a particular ~religious congregation. The question of the nature of th~ directed retreat has been explored in depth elsewhere." What has not been investigated at any point is how the tech-nique of the directed retreat can contribute to the deepening of the ~ommit-ment of a religious to his/her °founding charism. Because non-Ignatian development of the directed retreat has been so°limited, the paucity of in-formation on the topic is understandable. What follows here is based on the author's study within the documents of his own order, as well as at-tempts to work with sisters of two other,groups attempting to find better means for developing their own spirituality within their members. The Founding Charism .In recent attempts among religious to heed the directives of Vatican II that they renew .themselves in the spirit of'their founders and foundresses, the emphasis has been placed upon research and the question of teaching the proper spirit of the order to cb.ndidates,r Along with this has gone the concern for finding newer expressions for the origina! teaching of the founder, while remaining faithful to his/her intent. This has produced some valuable materials in some groups, some false starts in others; there ~William A. Barry, ~S.J., "The Experience of the First and Second Weeks of the Spiritual Exercises," Review ]or Religious, v. 32 (1973), pp. 102'-9. See also the same author's "Silence and tl~e Directed Retreat," Review ]or Religious, v. 32 (1973), pp. 347-51; and Smith, "The Nature and Value of a Directed Retreat." rVatican Council II, The Renewal o/Religious LiIe, no. 2. Review [or Religious, Volume 33, 1974/2 have been elements of both renewal and deception in the experience of getting in touch with one's roots. In the directed retreat, the issue changes somewhat. The purpose of the retreat is not to analyze, speculate, or study. It is to experience the meaning of the life of the Lord in a renewed sense. It is to deepen one's prayer, and to deal with issues that affect the spiritual life. When we speak of a directed retreat designed to inculcate the values of the spirituality of a religious congregation, therefore, the point is that the important elements of that spirituality must be assembled in what may be new ways, intended to move the soul through prayer more than grouped in perfectly logical structures. The experiential dimension, and the very goal of the directed re-treat according to one's own charism, is to bring the retreatant to the ex-perience that the founder had in founding the congregation. One must experience the foundation within oneself as a truly authentic, congruent integration of the spiritual life. It should make sense, bring an interior peace, and strongly confirm one's commitment to this congregation at this time in history. Few religious have taken themselves, or been taken, through the experience of the founder or foundress.'By this is not meant that the privations or sufferings of the founder--the more dramatic ele-ments of his/her life--need be reproduced in some sort of role playing. Indeed, the point is the reproduction of the insight and inspiration of the founding charism itself. What elements of the Christian experience brought about the development that the religious knows as his/her spiritual legacy? How were the evangelical counsels and the gospel message ex-perienced by the founder in such a way that the foundation of this group became a means of incarnating these values? If the congregation is the incarnation of the values of the founder--an extension of his/her charism into history--how is it to be experienced, personally by the members and corporately by the community as a whole? The questions above zero in on the issues that the directed retreat can deal with, in terms of the founding charism of a congregation. What is ob-vious, then, is that the design of the retreat must be developmental, and that might well be, as stated above, quite different from the design used to teach the ideas of the charism, or to study them. Critical Elements of a Founding Charism What, then, are the elements of a founding charism that must be con-sidered in designing such a retreat experience? The Spiritual Exercises are a brilliant example and deserve to be studied, even by those whose spiritual tradition differs sharply from that of the Jesuits. The themes, from the "Two Standards" to the last consideration, are highly developmental. Each builds on what precedes, not so much intellectually, but in the context of faith. It is possible to find all the elements of the Christian life from conversion Directed Prayer and the Founding Charism / 261 to union with God. In short, a spiritual path is described. At the same time, the style of the retreat is congruent with the highly personal emphasis on decision and discernment. The Ignatian directed retreat is characterized (usually, although there are exceptions) by lone meditation, usually at some length, by minimal communal aspects, and by minimal liturgical life. The focus is on the individual coming to grips with his/her personal relationships with the Lord, with an acceptance of that Lordship in one's life, and in the development of a prayer life that nourishes and defines that relationship. What then are the elements of a founding charism that are critical to the development of directed prayer in this ~evelopmental sense? Four ele-ments surface in any investigation of this question: method of prayer, ascetical and/or devotional practices, a spiritual system, and theological concepts. These are the elements that the designer of the retreat prayer experiences needs to coordinate. The study that makes this possible should be on the part of the retreat director, and the retreatant should not be called o'n to do other than move immediately into the prayer experience. .Let us, then, briefly look at each of these elements of the founding charism in turn. Method of Prayer The first critical question is whether the founder taught a method of prayer, particularly a method of meditation. In many cases, what will be discovered is that the founder/foundress did .use a currently popular method of meditation, but that it was a matter of convenience in instruct-ing novices, and not an important element of the spirituality of the con-gregation. Here some communal discernment is necessary. In reading the founder's letters of direction, for example, or instructions on prayer, it is necessary to discover the significance of any proper method to the totality of his/her founding charism. If a distinct approach, emphasis, or technique is present, it should be integrated in the directed prayer of the retreat experience, For instance, a congregation consecrated to Mary might well have developed a receptive approach to prayer based on an understanding of Our Lady's fiat, a disposition of total availabi!ity to the Lord. It would hardly be congruent in such a case to suggest.an aggressive, intellectual type of mental prayer. It would surely conflict with many of the themes that the founding charism will c6ntain. Ascetical and/or Devotional Practices This area, like the last, deserves careful work to determine the con-tinuing value of the ascetical and/.or devotional practices of the founder. Things which are merely characteristic of the nationality or culture of the founder may be safely set aside, and tangential devotions may also be ex-cluded. After all, even founders and foundresses are entitled to devotional 262 / Review 1or Religious, Volume 33, 1974/2 expressions which are uniquely personal, and without having these pro-jected onto their religious foundations! In what sense is the devotion in-volved in the direction that the founder gave his/her early members? What is its theological content? A founder or foundress with a great de-votion to the cross, who writes and speaks of the cross in such a way that it permeates the spirituality of the order, is teaching something of greater import than a founder with a great personal devotion to a. patron saint or to a shrine. Similarly, the practice of taking names in religion may have been merely the religious convention of the time of foundation, or it may have had specific meaning~ Other ascetical practices are.to be similarly evalu-ated. In one tradition, the regulations of the founder about the diet may have been a simple indication of poverty within his .cultural context; in another tradition, the manner in which the question is treated might indi-cate that the retreat should include some fasting, if possible, and with cerr tain goals in mind. A Spiritual System The most obvious element is the spiritual system of the foundation. Did the founder have an approach to spirituality which he taught to the early members? What virtues did he consider important, especially, what aspects of the Christian life did he consider characteristic of his founda-tion? What were his interpretation and understanding of evangelical chastity, poverty, and obedience, and did this differ from the prevailing understand-ings of his time? Did the foundation include any other vows besides the three traditional ones, even though these may no longer exist in the con-gregation? What was the value that the founder/foundress was stressing by having additional vows? What was his/her notion of common life and community experience? What is the role of the apostolate in fostering the spiritual life? All these are part of the questions that must be asked in the process of constructing the spiritual system of the founder or foundress, as, usually in most cases, active founders have not written out the spiritual system in clear fashion. Besides exploring the documents of the congregation, however, the living experience of the early foundation is itself of importance. The story of the life of the founder is often of great value in determining what he meant by a certain teaching. Religious orders are, after all, not only com-munities, but a special modality of community--witness communities that show forth the transcendent dimension of Christian life. The witness of the early foundation, therefore, is of great importance as a form of teach-ing. Theological Concepts Usually, theological concepts do not appear in a founding charism as Directed Prayer and the Founding Charism / 263 such. Founders and foundresses are rarely interested in theology except as it reveals the person :of Jesus Or underlies a religious value. Nevertheless, founders are usually very concerned about fidelity to the deposit of faith. A renewed understanding of theological concepts in recent years may make it possible to enrich the understanding of the founder. The founding charism does not really change, but the religious order is called to fidelity to it, not to literal acceptance in the language, cultural norms, and symbols of the early society. As the Church grows in its understanding, of herself and her divine mission, so 'a religious congregation should show signs of growth in its self-understanding.'To utilize a theological concept such as the Eucharist without integrating the better insights coming from a renewed liturgy of celebration would be more than unfortunate. It would be .a denial of the fidelity'of the founder to the Church's teaching, because as he was faithful to ~the Church's expression of eternal truth in his time and culture, so the congregation, today must reproduce that fidelity. Again, renewed Biblical scholarship has made possible far greater sophistication in understanding the gospel message than heretofore. That cannot be ignored in studying the founding charism, merely because it has happened since the founder died! The °emphasis laid upon the experiential above is not to be interpreted as demeaning the importance of the intellectual as preparation for prayer. Anti-intellectualism is not a mark of the Christian, Quite the contrary, and the directed prayer experience will be the richer for the .hours spent by both ~director and retreatant in studying the basic teaching ,of the Church, especially in those areas that touch upon the founding charism. ~Fhe Retreat ~s Reflection of the Founding Charism The first of the elements of a founding charism was stated as the method of meditation or mental prayer. The idea of the importance of the ,congruence of this with~the total spirituality of the founder or foundress was stressed, but this idea can also be expanded~. The entire style of the directed retreat should reflect the founding.charism. The import/race of this cannot easily be exaggerated because of ~he'experiential nature of:the directed retreat. There" is a profound difference between the directed re-treat., as desert experien.ce (silence, lone meditation at great length, and so forth) and the directed retreat as communal',experience (common liturgi-cal celebrations,' some group discussion, and so forth). In among these contrasts are many modalities of directed retreat, of course. The point is that it is important to include those aspects which will most effectively help the retreatant to gro~w into the values which are the subjects of the prayer experiences. The spirituality that emphasizes a deeply communitarian-or service value will not come through successfully in a desert experience. This i~ not to say that the desert experience is not of value for religious f~'om adtive commui~ities~(far from it!), but only that a limited aspect of their spirituality is likqly to emerge in such a context. Review for Religious, Volume 33, 1974/2 Similarly, methods of discernment should be congruent with the found-ing charism itself. What was the method for discerning the will of God used by the founder or foundress? Was it a communal means, or one based on authority? Discernment itself has become an issue, both within the directed retreat movement and in other contexts? It is an integral part of the Spiritual Exercises, and would seem to be an integral part of the work of the director of prayer. Within a given tradition, the method of dis-cernment might well be prophetic or charismatic. More likely it will reflect an authoritarian tone, which would translate into the directed retreat as a form of obedience to the spiritual guide. This type of obedience itself needs to be understood, as it isnot the same as the obedience owed a superior under the evangelical vow. In some traditions, the means of discernment might be very communal, in such a way that group direction might be a compatible style for certain congregations using the directed retreat. This would be alongside the pri-vate interview, which is essential to the directed retreat. A final word should be added on the place of resolutions. Many re-ligious feel strongly that they should come home from retreat with clear resolutions for the future--a battle plan, so to speak. The presumption is so strong with many that it is an issue that should be frankly discussed with the director. It is certainly not necessary for the directed retreat; it is enough that there be an interior renewal and deepened commitment to the spirit of the foundation. Whether there are "results" or decisions on con-crete action for the future should flow from the needs of the person him-self/ herself. Too often it is merely another expression of a workaholic personality. Conclusion This has been a simple and sketchy view of the development of a directed retreat from the point of view of the goal of growth in the spirit of one's own order. As such, directed prayer is a powerful means of growth toward incarnating in oneself the values of the founding charism. It is a means of renewal that not only affirms one's commitment to religious life, but also goes far toward building and renewing the community through renewed religious, standing firmly in the tradition of the one who brought the order into being under God's grace. 8Criticism has been recently expressed by W. Peters, S.J., "Discernment: Doubts," Review ]or Religious, v. 32 (1973), pp. 814-7. See also James V. Gau, S.J., "Dis-cernment and the Vow of Obedience," Review for Religious, v. 32 (1973), pp. 569-74; David T. Asselin, S.J., "Christian Maturity and Spiritual Discernment," Review ]or Religious, v. 27 (1968), pp. 581-95; and John R. Sheets, S.J., "Profile of the Spirit: A Theology of the Discernment of Spirits," Review ]or Religious, v. 30 (1971), pp. 363-76. The last article (that of Father Sheets) is available from Review ]or Religious as a separate reprint. Prayer: The Context of Discernment Charles J. Healey, S.J. Father Charles J. Healey, S.J., is a faculty member of the Department of Theology; Boston College; Chestnut Hill, Massachusetts 02167. Discernment Today In our attempts to seek and find God in our lives and to live out our Chris-tian lives of faith, hope, and love, we are often involved in a process of rediscovery. There is not that much that is new for us in the sense of dis-covering something for the first time. But often the conditions of the times in which we live and our own felt needs combine to lead us to focus on a particular aspect of the spiritual life. Such, I would suggest, is the case in the area of discernment. It is certainly a term that has deep roots in the history of Christian spirituality. But ours is a period that has seized upon the process of discernment--perhaps too quickly and too glibly at times-- in the hopes that it might aid us in our efforts to love and serve God both as individuals and as communities, and to seek and respond more gener-ously to His will in our lives. This renewed interest in discernment should come as no surprise. First of all, there is the very visible desire of many to deepen their own union with God, to establish or reestablish what they consider the essentials and priorities in their lives, and to make any required decisions in a context of faith and prayer. In a time of great change, many are seeking to find strength and unity within themselves not only to cope effectively with their lives and all their responsibilities, but also. to maintain themselves as lov-ing and productive persons. Secondly, many communities are turning to the process of discernment as a method of helping them in their attempts at renewal as a community and as a basis for group decisions. But whether 265 266 / Review for Religious, ~olume 33, 197.4/2 it is a case of individual discernment or corporate discernment, it is impor-tant to stress over and over that the basis of any discernment has to be the deep and intense prayer of the persons involved in the process. The context of any true discernment is prayer. The purpose of this article, then, is to offer some reflections on discernment, using the word in the broadest sense here and focusing on the intimate connection between discernment and prayer. ontex! Is Prayer Discernment really makes sense only when it is situated in the context of prayer. Unless there is a corresponding desire to seek and find God continually in our lives and to deepen our awareness of His reality and presence, discernment can end up just being talk. The seeking and yearn-ing attitude of the Psalmist must penetrate our own lives deeply: "To you, my heart speaks; you my glance seeks, your presence, O Lord, I seek. Hide not your face from me" (Ps 27:8-9). There is, of course, a renewed in-terest and even a hunger on the part of many today in the area of per-sonal prayer; and this accounts in part for the renewed interest in the area of discernment. There are many indications of this all around us at the present time; and many are definitely expressing a desire for praye~r which springs from a felt human need and the presence of the Spirit in our midst, ever renewing, ever arousing. Recently I was listening to a taped conference on prayer by Thomas Merton in which he mentioned at the beginning that he ~did not like to talk a great deal about prayer. This was certainly not from any disinterest, for if there is any constant preoccupation and interest that emerges in his life and writings, it would be with the value and priority he constantly gives to prayer. But he wanted to stress the point that pr~yer for us should be something simple and natural, something as simple and natiaral as breath-ing. It is hard for us to talk about breathing since it is such a normal process of our lives and one wfiich we can easily take for granted. So, too, he feels should be the case with prayer. At times we can complicate it and make an issue or a cause out of it. But usually when we make a~ca~]se or an issue out of something, we oppose it to something else: "This is.prayer, this isn't. This is something sacred, this isn't." The f~us could then shift to the issue rather than the reality, and prayer could then be viewed as something complicated and artificial. Perhaps we can best consider prayer as the simple, natural, continual response of one who is,. convinced he be-longs to God and seeks to grow in union with Him, and the response of one who realizes he is a person possessed by a loving God. And it is in this climate, this atmosphere of prayer tl~at the whole process of discern-ment should be placed. The context is a very normal, full, and serious seek-ing after God. Pray'~r." The Context o[ Discernment / 267 The Process of Discernment ' Discernment, then, should not be considered a cause or an issue nor ev~en' a method in itself. It is a process in prayer by which one seeks seri-ously to know and follow God's will, to hear His call and faithfully and generously respond in the very real life situation of the person concerned. If l~ra~er should be a very human and ordinary experience, so too should b6 discernment. In this sense, it is a very simple process; and yet, on the other hand, it can be difficult in the sense that it presupposes constant efforts at'a deep and continuous union with God through prayer. This re-quires perseverance, patience, and willingness to expend time and energy. It' cannot be turned off and on like a water faucet if it is to be effective; it presupposes a firm basis of faith and the continuous seeking of the presence of the Lord. ~Alth0ugh discernment is a word that can come easily to the lips, it can still remain a rather elusive concept. Perhaps this is because it pre-soppos~ so much else. At any rate, we might recall Father Futrellrs defi-nition that discernment "involves choosing the way of the light of Christ instead of the way of the darkness of the Evil One and living out the con-sequences of this choice through discerning what specific decisions and ac-tions a~e, demanded to follow Christ here and now.''1 Thus discernment focuses on the ongoing attempts to clarify and ascertain God's will in our lives and seeks to specify what actions and decisions are required in the life of "on'e who wishes to follow Christ tothlly. The process presupposes an int'eflse desire, hunger, and willingness to seek God's will and to embrace it generously once one has come to a reasonable certitude regarding it. W~ might say it all comes down to our attempts to hear and respond to:the wo~'d of God in our own unique lives. But. if we are to be sensitive t~lGod speaking to us in the many ways He does.in our liv6s, we must first hear His call; we must listen quietly and give Him frequent opportuni-ties to speak to us. If we fire to b~ sensitive to God's presence and attentive to His touch, there must be an element of stillness and listening. Since this listening~aspect is so important for discernment, we should not be surprised to find this aspect of prayer being re-e~mphasized today.2 Many are ex-periencing the need today to. take time out from all their activities in order to turn within and seek God's presence within, to contemplate Him and to listen to Him in the stillness of their hearts. It is a kind of active receptivity as we let the radical truth of God shine forth with its own life within us. We seek to make the words of the P~almist our own: "In your light we see light." It is in this atmosphere .of stillness and presence that one can best determine God's call, God's touch, God's will. ~John C. Futrell, S.J., "Ignatian Discernment," Studies in the Spirituality o] Jesuits, v. 2, no. 2, p. 47. '-'See, for example, W. Norris Clarke, S.J., "Be Still and Contemplate,"~ New Catholic World, November-December 1972, pp. 246 ft. 2611 / Review [or Religious, l/'olume 33, 1974/2 Building on the Past As we seek to see clearly where God is touching us at a given time and where He is leading us and asking us to respond and follow, it is very help-ful to grow in the awareness of where God has touched us and nourished us0 in the past. Each of us has his or her own unique history in the hands of a loving God, that is, significant events, persons, books, Scripture pas-sages, and so forth, that have been a source of great strength and help. All of this constitutes our own faith experience of God; and the more it is brought to our conscious awareness, the more it becomes our own. Often in discernment workshops or faith sharing experiences, methods and oppor-tunities are presented to help individuals grasp more explicitly what they uniquely possess of God in their lives. One can call this by various names: one's core experience of God, one's beauty within, one's name of grace, and so forth. But it all comes down to the same reality: we seek to realize what we already possess, what is uniquely ours, and where God has touched us and loved us significantly. Once we are more aware of how God has acted in our lives in the past, we can more easily return in a spirit of prayer to be nourished and strengthened and sustained. What has sustained us in ~the past and what has touched us before, can sustain us and touch us again. This conscious awareness also helps us to be more responsive and sensitive to where God is touching us now, where He is leading us. We can begin to see a pattern and a continuity in our lives of faith. Above all, we be-come more aware of the profoundest reality of our lives, namely that which we possess of the power and love of God that has worked within us in the past and continues to be operative in the present. Discernment in prayer, then, is an ongoing process that seeks to find God and His will in our lives; it involves a constant seeking of God and an awaren(ss of His presence in our lives. Through discernment one seeks to hear God's continuous call, to recognize it as clearly as possible in order to follow it as faithfully and generously as possible. It seeks to answer the question: How can I best love and serve God in the present circumstances of my life. It is an ongoing process because our lives, our experience, our work, our relationship with God is an ongoing process. His Word does not come to us in a vacuum but in the concrete circumstances of our everyday lives. As Thomas Merton says in one of my favorite passages from his writings: Every moment and every event of every man's life on earth plants some-thing in his soul. For just as the wind carries thousands of winged seeds, so each moment brings with it germs of spiritual vitality that come to rest im-perceptibly in the minds and wills of men. Most of these unnumbered seeds perish and are lost, because men are not prepared to receive them; for such seeds as these cannot spring up anywhere except in the good soil of freedom and love.3 aThomas Merton, New Seeds of Contemplation (New York: New Directions, 1961), p. 14. Prayer: The Context of Discernment / 269 In a very true sense, it is only the faith-filled person, the contemplating person that is acutely sensitive to these seeds of God in his or her life. And for the soil of freedom and love to flourish in our own lives, we must con-stantly open ourselves to the Spirit of God through an abiding spirit of prayer. Not only must we seek to grow sensitive to God's speaking to us in the external events of our lives, but we must seek to grow in an awareness and sensitivity to the movements within ourselves as we react personally to the signs of His will and presence. How do my present reactions corre-spond to the felt experience of God that has been so much a part of my life in the past? Are my present movements in resonance with that source of peace, that sense of oneness and wholeness before God that I have ex-perienced before, that sense of belonging to God that has been so nourish-ing and sustaining in my life? Are they consistent with the normal signs of the Spirit working within us, the signs of "love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, humility and self-control" (Gal. 5:22-3)? These are some of the questions one seeks to clarify in order to fulfill the desire to seek and find the Lord and His will. The spiritual director can play an important role in assisting here, for at times we can be too close to ourselves to have the needed objectivity. The director can aid us in clarifying and objectifying our own experiences and interior movements and aid us to see where God is touching us, loving us, and indicating His presence and His will. A Sense of Freedom In addition to a deep and constant spirit of prayer, discernment also requires an attitude of freedom and detachment. The attitude of freedom I refer to is that which allows a person to give to God and His will the central place in one's life;, it is a freedom and detachment from all other things that would either prevent or hinder one's striving to focus On God. It is the sense of freedom that allows God to become and remain the cen-tral reality in one's life. The Psalmist speaks of this centrality with the words: "As the eyes of the servant are on the hands of the Master, so my eyes are on you, O Lord." It is the freedom that allows one to respond generously to Jesus' invitation to Matthew, "Come, follow me," and His words to the disciples of John the Baptist, "Come and see." Come and see and taste the goodness of the Lord. It is the freedom expressed in the words of the prophet Samuel, "Speak, Lord, for your servant is listening" (1 Sam 3:10), and the words of the Psalmist, "Here am I, Lord, I come to do your will" (Ps 40:7-8). We might note in passing that there can be an intimate connection between this spirit of freedom and a lifestyle that is marked by a spirit of simplicity. How does one grow in this spirit of freedom? Ultimately it is through a cooperation with the power of God's grace and love working within us. 270 / Review for Religious, Volume 33, 1974/2 But one important way is through a deepening realization that one is a loved sinner, that one has been touched and healed. A profound convic-tion of God's steadfast love and fidelity can be a very liberating force that enables one to turn to God and seek Him alone and His service in a spirit of simplicity and joy. This freedom grows in a context of lively faith and is nourished in prayerful reflection on God's goodness, mercy, love, and providence. Conclusion In general, discernment in prayer is an inward looking process; the focus is mainly on the movements and experiences of God within us. But the process must never stop here for there should also be an outward dimension of discernment. First of all, as in so many areas of the spiritual life of man, a healthy norm is: "By their fruits you shall know them." There is a confirmatory aspect of all discernment in the external fruits that are in evidence and the good works that are produced. Secondly, the great commandment,of love must always be kept in perspective, and a deepening union with God should lead to a deepening union with one's fellow man. An increasing sense of compassion for one's fellow man and his needs should flow from one's union with God. Finally, the process should lead to an increasing sensitivity to life and all its mysteries, to an increasing awareness of.God's presence in all things, and to our own growth as-con-templatives in action. A Norwegian Outpost: Maria Einscete M. Basil Pennington, O.C.S.O. Father M. Basil Pennington, O.C.S.O., is a Cistercian monk of St. Joseph's Abbey; Spencer, Massachusetts 01562. Our plane put down at Oslo and I soon bungled my way through customs, only .to find--no one. Communications had gotten a bit confus(d and now there was no one there. But everyone I asked seemed t6 know of him: "Brother Robert, yes, the hermit. He lives up in the mountains near Lake Tinn." And so I began my pilgrimage. Ten o'clock the next night I stepped down from a bus in the pouring rain and made bold to ask the young lady who alighted with me the oft repeated question: "Where is Brother Robert? . That way," she answered with a bold sweep of the arm as her hand pointed up a dark rise of conifers. I turned in the opposite direction to the friendly lights of an inn. It was a good choice. There among the youths gathered around the blazing fire was Jan. A couple years earlier he had been up to see the hermit with his pastor. He offered to be my guide. Good to his word, Jan arrived early the next morning with his little Volkswagen which took us as far as it could. Then we began to climb on foot. I was a bit embarrassed when Jan took my bag, but soon I was very grateful that he had--for otherwise I probably would never have made it. We must have climbed steadily, along an old logging trail, for forty-five minutes or more when Jan sudde.nly stopped and pointed back into the woods. We had actually passed our goal: Maria Einscete--Mary's Hermit-age. Maria Einscete was just a simple log cabin, one just like so many others in those forests. Larid in Norway belongs to the owner by hereditary right. It cannot be "definitively alienated. Most families living in the villages or on the lowland farms own stretches of woodland up on the mountains. 272 / Review ]or Religious, l,'olume 33, 197/.'-/2 In better times they kept men up there ,to care for the woods, but now most of these lumberjack's cabins are empty. One of these landlords, a kindly man, let Brother Robert use his abandoned cabin, plant some vege-tables, and dig a well. From the United States to Chile and to Norway Brother Robert, Father Robert Kevin Anderson, is a monk of St. Joseph's Abbey, Spencer, Massachusetts. He entered the Cistercian Order at the Abbey of Our Lady of the Valley back in 1949 when he was 17. He was one of the first choir novices professed after the community trans-ferred to Spencer. Frater Kevin, as he was called in those days, cared for the newly planted orchards and, after his ordination to the priesthood, for the newly planted brothers--as father master of the lay novices. But he had always experienced an attraction toward a more simple and radical form of monasticism. He went on to pursue this, first at St. Benedict's Monastery in the Colorado Rockies, then at the Monastery of Las Condes in the Chilean Andes. It was at the latter monastery that he first embarked on the eremitical life which he found to be his true calling. Later Father Robert sought deeper solitude in southern Chile; but the bishop there had some ideas of his own about how Father was to lead the eremitical life. So Father moved on to the land of his family's origins, Sweden. Here again, a hard-pressed bishop with few priests had his own ideas how a hermit-priest should live. And again Father moved, this time across the border to the diocese of the sympathetic and understanding Cistercian bishop, John Gran of Oslo. Until he could find a suitable site, Father Robert lived in a distant parish. Soon he found what seemed like an ideal place for a hermit: an island on Lake Tinn. But appearances can be deceiving. Living on an island meant dependence on others for all supplies, or keeping a boat for summer and an ice sleigh for winter. Then, too, the fine summer weather brought traffic to the lake. Father lifted up his eyes to the mountains, and soon ascended to Maria Einscete. The Hermit Life o| Father Robert Although feature articles and TV presentations have made Father Robert known throughout Norway and even throughout Scandinavia, he yet receives few visitors. The Norwegians respect and are inspired by his life of prayer and presence to God. They do not want to intrude. Besides, the ascent is difficult and the way known to few. The Catholic pastor, whose parish extends for several hundred miles, calls in from time to time. And of course, the good sisters find their way there at times; also, the search-ing young--from as far away as south France or America. Priests have occasionally come for retreat. And a pious convert lives not far from Father's mailbox and enjoys having him in to say Mass in her front room. A Norwegian Outpost: Maria Einscete / 273 But usually Bror Robert (as the Norwegians call him) is alone with his goats and his God. He goes down to the road to the mailbox every few days--and the owner of the neighboring box watches to see that the mail is collected, a sign that all is well with their hermit. Once a week or so, on skis in winter and a motor bike in summer, Father will go to the village for supplies. All the villagers know and love their hermit. They expressed real joy when "Brother Robert's brother" came to visit him. From time to time Father goes to Oslo to speak to the Dominican nuns, the only con-templative community in Norway. And once a year he goes south to the French Abbey of Mont-des-Cats to see his spiritual father. This was one of the conditions the bishop placed on his presence in the diocese as a hermit: that once a year he would spend some time in a monastery. Father Robert's life is very simple. He prays the hours quite as they always have been celebrated in the monastery, and offers Mass for all man-kind. He does some wood carving, mounts ikons, and practices the ancient Norwegian craft of weaving baskets from birch roots. He also translates books. He is a gifted linguist and has mastered both new and old Nor-wegian, as well as the local dialect. These occupations, along with Mass stipends, help him to keep body and soul together. At the time of my first visit Father Robert had been living in his log cabin for about a year. The only facilities were the woods. He had dug a well nearby and so had plenty of good water. But he confessed to me that he spent most of his time during that first winter chopping firewood--for his cabin had no inner walls and was very difficult to heat. The Spencer community helped him then to get a logger's caravan, which is not only much more snug and easier to heat, but which Father was able to locate higher up on the mountain where he can benefit from much more sunshine. The view from the new location, looking out across Lake Tinn to Mount Gaustaf, one of the highest peaks in southern Norway, is simply magnifi-cent. As the rays of the sun play on clouds, mountains, lake, and forest one is ceaselessly awed. This is indeed a Godly place--an ideal place for a hermit. The Monastic Presence of Father Robert This extension of Spencer Abbey and of the American Cistercian Re--' gion, this foothold of Cistercian life in Norway, is certainly something for which we should be most grateful and praise the Lord. The effectiveness of Father's monastic presence cannot be fully evalu-ated but it is certainly significant. This is rather surprising in a country where most are at best nominal members of a state church, and the few, very scattered Catholics tax the handful of devouted priests and religious who seek to minister to them. The latter, without exception, seemed to ad-mire and respect Father and find inspiration in his fidelity to his particular calling. But the Lutherans, too, revere him and seem to be grateful and 274 / Review for Religious, Volume 33, 1974/2 happy .that this man of God is in their midst. They relate stories of her-mits and monks who lived in this land before the Reformation and the Danish oppression, even of a particular hermit in the area of Lake Tinn. Even for these apparently religiously indifferent, ,the man of prayer living alone on the mountain is a sign of hope, of something better, higher, tran-scendent. And when the final option comes, hopefully, with perhaps only a vague and confused idea of what he stands for in their minds, and the grace flowing from his prayer in their hearts, they will reach out for that Transcendent Reality. Blessed be the Lord God . . . he has raised up a horn of salvation for Norway. Now that there is a Cistercian bishop and hermit, in Norway may we not soon have a regular cenobitic foundation? It is time the Cistercians returned. The Cistercians first directed their steps to Norway back in the twelfth century, in the Golden Age of the Order. And there are still significant remains ~of their presence. On the Island of HoevedCya in the Oslo Fjord, just a short ferryboat ride from the capital, are the ruins of an abbey founded in 1147 from Kirkstall,. The whole outiine of the regular build-ings is there. The walls of .the church reach up ten and fifteen feet, and higher at the comer tower. Through the insisterice of 'Bishop Gran the government now preserves this site as a national monument. It is a very beautiful site indeed. But historical sites, no matter how beautiful, are not enough. The Church of Norway, like every other, needs for its fullness the presence of living and thriving contemplative communities. Guided by the Lord, Brother Robert has made a beginning. May the Lord prosper what he has begun. Reflections on Bangalore Sister Mary-John Mananzan, O.S.B. From October 14-22, 1973, the Second Asian Monastic Congress was held in Banga-lore, India. Sister Mary-John Mananzan, O.S.B., attended the meeting and gives here her impressions of the Congress. Sister Mary-John is Dean; St. Scholastica's College; P.O. Box 3153; Manila, Philippines. This will not be a report on the Bangalore Congress in the usual sense, but rather a reliving of significant experiences and a sharing of insights gained. No amount of faithful reporting can capture the atmosphere of such a meeting. But .perhaps the sharing of one's impressions can give a glimpse into the dynamics of the ievent much more than a complete but detached description 9f the proceedings. Personalities Let me begin with the significant people who made an impression on me. Among the observers to the Congress were two Tibetan monks who rePr, ds.ehted thee Dalai Lama. They were Lama Sherpa Tulku and Lama Samdong Tulku. The one word that ke'eps coming to my mind to describe them is "genuine." I was struck by their authenticity, their trueness to them-selves, their utter lack of pretense. They went about with serene dignity, quiet friendliness~ and unfailing self-mast6ry. They talked with perfect frankness about the problems of their people in exile with feeling but with-out the slightest rancor againsl~ the invading Chinese. And with disarming simplicity, one of them asked in our small group discussions: "Please ex-plain to us what you mean by a personal God." The theological jar~gon did not seem to satisfy them, so during the coffee break I ventured an explana-tion which ran something like this: "Lama Sherpa, do you sometimes talk to the Absolute Reality?" 275 276 / Review [or Religious, Volume 33, 1974/2 "Yes," he replied. "Do you think he understands you?" "Yes." "Well, that is more or less what we mean when we say that God is a person." He seemed to be more satisfied with this explanation. The lamas had a way of expressing their ideas in an unusually effective way. During the discussion on prayer Lama Samdong Tulku made the following remark: "I.got the impression that when you pray, you send your words to the Absolute Reality. We, we push ourselves to It." Another personality which, for me, stood out, was Abbot Primate Rem-bert Weakland himself. He was a most excellent presiding officer; more-over, his introductory and concluding talks showed his keen intelligence, his versatile scholarship, and his sobriety of judgment. He was most human. He joked with the seminarians of the Kristu Jyoti College where we stayed as though he were one of them but without losing his dignity. In fact I ob-served in him something I seldom observe in many superiors today--an unembarrassdd awareness of his authority and an unapologetic reference to it when he considered it useful to do so. Among the non-Asians who had adopted the Eastern way of monastic life, the one I considered most credible was Father Bede Griffiths. He went about in a most unobtrusive, unostentatious way without the slightest effort to edify or to preach. I find this significant because I felt that there can be a tendency among non-Asians who have insights about the indigenization of monastic life and liturgy which are in themselves authentic, to be over-zealous and therefore tactless in their efforts to conscienticize the people whose culture they have studied and adopted. I believe that there can be a very naive, uncritical adaptation to indigenous culture which, if cohpled with a lack of delicacy in strategy, could alienate the people because it ap-pears to them to be another and a subtler form of paternalism. When this is further accompanied by efforts to edify, then the people are positively repelled. Then one provokes reactions which may sound extreme and de-fensive, but are not wholly unjustified like: "Why do they give themselves to be more Eastern than the Easterns?" The adaptation of the Eastern forms of monasticism by monks and nuns in Asia is an important venture; but this must be undertaken with utmost delicacy, tactful strategy, and with what perhaps for Westerners will amount to an almost intolerable amount of patience. I was enriched by the friendship with Vietnamese monks and nuns who shared with me their spiritual adventures. They have left their b!g monas-teries in the hillsides and have come to live among the poor in the center of the city of Saigon. The nuns take in laundry and typing work to support themselves and the monks take turns in tricycle driving. Reflections on Bangalore / 277 The Theme of the Congress The theme of the Congress was: "The Experience of God." This was divided into subtopics .such as: Monastic Experience of God in Christianity and Other Religions; The Experience of God: Methods of Realization; The Experience of God in Community Life; The Influence of Asiatic Religious on Monastic Structure; The Experience of God and Social Responsibility; and The Contribution of Christian Monasticism of Asia to the Universal Church. These were discussed in small groups as well as in the general assemblies. Again I will not make an effort to summarize the discussions but rather pick out those which had an impact on me. First of all, I regained my respect for the word "monastic." Due to certain historical factors, the word "monastic" in certain circles had come to mean deportment, a pattern of behavior and a fuga mundi attitude. In the Congress, the main emphasis was on the single-minded search for God. There is a monastic dimension to every human being. For those who have come to an awareness orbit and who wish to fulfill this dimension of their being, there should be monastic communities whose structures are flexible enough to share their way of life even on a temporary basis. At this point, it is good to mention.what Bishop D'Souza expressed as the petition of the Indian hierarchy. The Indian hierarchy, he said, is asking the monastic communities to be: 1. eschatological signs (monks and nuns should primarily be men and women of God) 2. centers of liturgy 3. havens of serenity 4. examples Of simplicity of life and refinement 5. model communities for Christian living 6. houses of undiscriminating hospitality One thing that was realized in the Congress was the contribution that the non-Christian form of monasticism can give to the traditional Christian monastic" life. There are several elements of the Eastern form of monasti-cism which have been forgotten or not emphasized enough in the Western tradition. There is, for example, the importance of the techniques and meth-ods in the search for the Absolute. The role of the body in prayer that is very much emphasized in Yoga and Zen could'be given the same impor-tance by Christian monks and nuns. The existential view of the Absolute and the unified view of reality of the East could balance the more con-ceptual and dualistic view of the West. The importance of the guru in Eastern spirituality can likewise revitalize the role of the spiritual director. Father Raymond Pannikar summarizes the unique role of the East thus: "Just as Africa's contribution to the Church is sensitivity to creation and that of the West,. the discovery of the value of history; so the unique con-tribution of the Asian is to develop the dimension o] the spirit." 278 / Review ]or Religious, Volume 33, 1974/2 Shared Prayer The Congress was not just a series of intellectual discugsions on the experience of God: It was for many participants something of a spiritual experience in itself. Contributing tO these was, first, the shared liturgy which the different regional groups prepared, giving the ~vhole community an ex-perience of a variety of. indigenous liturgy "Indian, Vietnamese, Korean, Chinese. There were likewise opportunities to meditate in the, Zen' way, the Yoga way, the Tibetan Buddhist way, and in Christian shared prayers. Amid the variety of methods, ceremonies, symbols, °and gestures there was the unity of hearts in worship.~And then there were the interpersonal en-counters which occasioned the sharing of spiritual experiences, the creating oLbonds which gave the promise of lasting friendships.~There was thus the wonder of discovery of the other in each other. There were no resolutions, conclusions, or statements at the end of the Congress. As Father Abbot Primate said, Bangalore was more humble in its tone than the Bangkok Congress. Its open-endedness is a challenge to further reflection and to further action. And this challenge was expressed in the delegates' message to their communities which reads as follows: Message to Our Communities Together with Father Abbot Primate, Rembert Weakland, we, , gathered here at Bangalore for the Second Asian Monastic Congress, salute you with an Indian greeting:which echoes in our liturgy, SHANTI, PEACEF ,~ We would like to share with you the atmosphere of joy, openness and fraternity that prevails in this community, which grow out of peoples of dif-ferent backgrounds, not only of race and culture, but also of religious tradi-tion. We are fortunate to have at our meeting Cl~ri~tia'n monks and sisters of various countries, Tibetan lamas, Buddhist and Jain mdnks and Hindu swamis and sanyasis. We lived together, 'praying and discussing in mutual enrichment. We are amazed to realize that, amid very real differences of opinions and experiences, there is an overwhelming convergence of concern: THE SINGLEMINDED SEARCH FOR GOD. It is in this conce.rn ~that we experience a strong bond of unity. We consider it our task as monks to commit ourselves wholehea.rtedly to this search, and it is in this context that we accept the world around us and feel h sense o.f sol!darity with it. We have a role in bt~iiding up the city of man. This consigts in pointing out to man the path to God. In particular, we are to share with the poor in theii-°striving for human dignity and liberty. It has become clear to us that to realise these goals i.n our times calls for a radical openness.and flexibility in our religious life and structures. We are in a moment of challenge. If we fail to respond, we lose our right to exigt as monasteries. Your delegates will bring home to:you reports of the proceedihgs of the Congress. Understandably, these will kive but a glimpse into what really happened here. But, for many of us, this Congress has been a: real spiritual experience. ,.Your delegates can communicate this experience more effectively than any written .report. It is our earnest prayer that all the communities scattered throughout Asia will put into effect the insights gained during this Congress. Tliis may mean breaking away from fixed patterns, settink out like Abraham ihto ff new land. Reflecffon~ on Bangalore / 279 We strongly recommend openness to our brothers of other religious traditions who, as we have experienced here, have so much to offer us. We urge the rethinking of our way of life so that as many people as possible may have the opportunity of sharing with us our experience of God within the content of living and vital communities. Let us maintain the bonds of unity which have been established among us through our delegates. During these days we have thought of you and prayed for you. May our continued unity in prayer be fostered by renewed contacts with one another. Toward a More Authentic Sharing in Community Laurent Boisvert, O.F.M. Father Laurent Boisvert, O.F.M., is the editor of the excellent Canadian magazine for religious, La vie des corntnunaut~s religieuses and lives at 5750, boulevard Rose-mont; Montreal 410, Quebec; Canada. The article originally appeared in the March 1973 issue of La vie des communaut~s religieuses and is printed in translation here with the authorization of that magazine. The translation was made by Sister Clarisse Marie, S.N.J.M.; General Administration of the Sisters of the Holy Names of Jesus and Mary; 187 Chemin de Cap-St.-Jacques; Pierrefonds 940, P.Q.; Canada. The sharing of material goods, based on the needs of each individual or moral person, tends to express and intensify the fraternal bond which unites us as religious. However, in everyday living this sharing meets with ob-stacles which compromise, in varying degrees, its fraternal character. A review of them will help us to become more conscious of them and so favor, I hope, the building of that community of justice, peace, and love which all of us desire and which alone can tnaly be called "fraternal." It is not rare to hear religious ask themselves: How does it happen that our lives are so little changed by the many conferences, sessions, and work-shops in which we participate? These same religious insist that we present them not so much the fundamental values of religious life which they say they already know, but rather a way of integrating them into their lives. The reflections which follow relate to this first step: the "how" of living a more genuine fraternal community life, a step which consists in over-coming in oneself the chief obstacles to its realization. False Mental Attitudes When we insist, before community groups, that a distribution of goods 2110 Authentic Sharing in Community / 2111 be made according to the needs of each, some religious express amazement. It seems useless to them that we should come back to so fundamental an issue, and one that everyone accepts. No one can deny, however, that in spite .of acceptance in theory, certain religio.us, and a number sufficiently large to warrant the mentioning of it again, demand for themselves the use of all kinds of things, basing these requests, not on real need, but rather on the fact that other religious have and enjoy the use of. them. If someone has such and such a thing for his work, goes out so many times during the week, or wears clothing of such and such a quality, etc., others use the example of such religious to justify having the same things and acting in like manner. If one group needs two cars, another group made up of the same number of people will perhaps demand one, just because the first group has two, How can we explain this dichotomy between the theory of sharing goods according to need, and the contrary practice illustrated by the examples just given? The reason is, it seems to me, that the criterion for the distribution of goods, recognized at the intellectual level, has not yet penetrated the mentality of all religious nor modified their attitudes and their conduct. Certain religious accept the idea of pluralism in the forms of sharing, but their reactions are those of people accustomed to a uniform type of sharing. They still lack that which, for all of us, is most difficult to realize, namely a change of attitude. No modification of structures, how-ever radical, can dispense a religious from the effort required to bring.about this conversion. It is easier and faster to set up pluralistic structures for sharing than it is to transform a person accustomed to uniformity so that he becomes capable of understanding, of respecting and of favoring diversity on the level of persons and their needs, and of making the necessary applications. All of which helps us to understand that if, in our congregations, the adaptation of structures has in large measure been accomplished, the con-version of our ways of thinking has not. Some years of effort will still be necessary, years of patience and of tolerance, before the transformation of mental attitudes and of conduct becomes a reality. In spite of everything, some people will never know such a transformation, because they believe that such a change is an evil and not a benefit to be pursued. Charity re-quires that we respect them, and that we learn to live with them, in the wis-dom and great-heartedness of compromise which, under its° positive forms, is love. Inability to Estimate One's Needs Accurately It is not sufficient to want to share a community of goods according to the real needs of each one. For the actual realization of this principle one must be able to evaluate tfiese needs honestly and accurately. Some religious are more or less incapable of making such an evaluation. For some, the reason lies in the formation they received as young religious and the long 2112 / Review ]or Religious, Volume 33, 1974/2 practice of a poverty based on dependence. They had only to ask and to leave ,to ,authority to judge the legitimacy of their request. Once the su-perior had given an affirmative answer, they never questioned themselves again about their use of the things granted. -This dependence,, judged in our day excessive, has atrophied the sense of responsibility"of some and made them quite unable to determine their own needs: Today, when au-thority leaves them free to choose such and such a thing,, to do or not do such and such an. action, to go or not to go to such and such a place, they prefer no action at all rather then assume responsibility for it. Long and difficult will be,the liberating process which will one day enable them to judge their own needs, if~ such will ever be possible. ~ C-Certain religious, coming from poor families and having, lacked some of the basic necessities during their childhood, make up,for lost time and accumulate without reason a surplus of goods. They:even admit that they ask for things to make up for the lack of them experienced in the past.And so they fill their closets with items.for, which they have,no real need, but which give them a sort of psychological security. In this Way they com-pensate for the time when they sutIeredreal want. ~ ,, For other religious, the practice of a poverty consisting of going with-out, of detailed restriction for use; of meticulous control and uniformity, has brought ab6ut another ,excessive reaction in that they,are constantly asking .for things they don't really need and of which they never .seem to have enough. At the other extreme are those who considered this former practice of poverty the ideal one, and so refuse to accept any form of com-munal sharing based on a pluralism of real needs. Using False Criteria Again, for some religious, the relative incapacity of identifying their real needs results from the use of false criteria. They will say, in, order to justify a trip: all my brothers and,sisters went to such aoplace, though an-other might say~ with just as much truth: I cannot make that .trip since none of my brothers and sisters have ever been there. Can the single fact :that one's relatives have visited Europe constitute a ,valid reason for asking for a trip overseas? Or again, can the simple fact that one's parents have never taken:~some scenic trip within the province or state:~be sufficient reason for denying oneself ,such an outing? In both cases, the use .of the "family" norm, instead of helping, hinders the discovery of real needs. That one consider the situation of one's family is certainly not wrong, but to use it as the sole means of defining orie's Own needs and the ~type of relaxation one has a right to seek is certainly without justification. These .conclusions apply .likewise .to one's social and professional posi-tion. There are people who count on the life style of ~this double milieu to determine personal needs. If they: live inca neighborhood where~each family averages one or two color-television~, sets, a summer cottage', a snowmobile Authentic Sharing in Community / 2113 or~ two, etc., they think that they too have a right to these same things and wi!l use them, under the illusion that they are living their commitment to po~verty.,lf th~ey work in the.~schools or hospitals and if the majority~of their companions go to Florida every year, wear a new outfit every day, etc., they come to believe that such is Lequired of them too, and in their minds these things become necessities that must be satisfied. The fallacy .of such ~rea.soning comes,from the setting up of one's .social or professional sur-roundings as an absolute ~in determining personal needs. It ought to be evi-dent that even if all the teachers of the school have a car, and if all the families in the area have two television sets, I do not necessarily need the same things. It also ha.ppens that this met.hod of evaluating needs ac.cord-ing to a social or professi0nal milieu soon involves various forms of dis-crimination, ail.harmf.ul to .the ,building of a fraternal community. Let us add that economy, valid as it may be, often prejudices one?s judgment of personal needs. To know how to economize is a quality that most people of average means acquire through° force of circumstances, That religious should possess, it is nother surprising nor embarrassing.;Waste-fulness and .extravagance, as well as carelessness, have always been,.con-sidered faults. The error, in the case of the religious, is to purchase things, not because ~one may need them, but because they are on sale and that per-haps one day they will be useful. It is also true that this intention of econo-mizing has a way of multiplying needs. The Influence of Numbers ,, In visiting a number of local commu~nities I ~have ~liscovered that re-ligious in small groups have their real needs satisfied much more easily than do religious in.larger gr.oups: Although not universal, this situation is repre-sentativ, e of a number of congregations. Of course, there are many cases in which it is reasonable and necessary ¯ to take numbers, into consideration. For example, if the local authority in a community of one hundred persons is planning an outing which includes transportation and lunch~ it is obvious that one must consider the number of those who wish to participate. The influence of numbers can, however, become harmful to community sharing when., a particular type .of logic prevails as sometimes happens in larg~ groups, though it. may also be found in more restricted ones, too. For example, two or three religious.desire to obtain skis in order to satisfy.a real need for relaxation, so they go to the local authority with their req.uest only to receive this answer: I cannot authorize such an expenditure; just think of the money involved if the sixty religious of the house were to come asking for skis! This reasoning characterizes a mentality which cerl~ainly is not pluralistic ,'and which fails to respect personal needs. That two or three religious desire some skis in no way implies that all the others need or even wish them. The falseness of this reasoning is even more evident Review ]or Religious, Volume 33, 1974/2 when we realize that the community is made up for the most part of older people or of those who are ill. On pushing this kind of logic to the extreme, one ought to refuse a wheelchair to a sick person who really needs one because everyone else might want one too. This type of reasoning may also exist among some members of the community group. They refrain from asking for what they really need be-cause they say: If everybody were to ask for such a thing, the community could not afford it. However, it is nowhere written that all the religious of a house must have the same needs at the same time, and that to satisfy them one must buy sixty canes or sixty wigs at the same time! Why, then, should we suppose this uniformity and always act in view of the total num-ber? Wherever this kind of logic dominates, whether on the part of the superior or of the members of the group matters little, it makes impossible the practice of community sharing according to need. The Moral Weight of Salaries The religious earning a high salary seems to have a special facility for getting what he needs and often more than he needs, while the one who makes no financial contribution is sometimes too embarrassed to make known real needs. Other variants of this phenomenon are these: The re-ligious in a salaried service who works overtime may think it his right to keep and to use as he pleases at least a part of the extra money so earned; the one who has won a grant or money award will not fail to exploit his chance of obtaining favors; the religious who receives an "old-age pension" and the one who regularly draws some form of income may also use these to obtain personal advantages. The moral weight of money earned by a religious' likewise risks in-fluencing the decisions of the superior. Does he feel as free and no more obligated in evaluating the requests of the one who hands in a substantial check than he does in judging those requests made by members who make no such contribution? It would not be surprising if, in the first case, he finds a particular facility in saying "yes" at once and with a smile, while in the second case, he has a tendency to ask questions about the necessity of the items requested and to multiply his reflections on the observance of poverty. In allowing a lapse of time between turning in one's check and making a request for what one judges useful or necessary, the religious can help those in authority to avoid showing favor and granting to him as to the others only what he really needs. At the provincial level we occasionally see this tendency in operation in those cases in which authority tends to discriminate between local groups of varying incomes. Groups with significant revenues sometimes receive more easily the authorization for extra expenditures than another poorer group, though the actual needs of the two groups may be identical. If such is the case, it is evident that discrimination is practiced in dealing with local Authentic Sharing in Community / 285 groups, a situation very detrimental in the realization of a truly fraternal community. The Matter o~ Gi~ts It also happens that the reception of gifts sometimes prevents sharing according to need. The religious, benefiting from the generosity of family or friends, is often better provided for than the one who must depend solely on the community. In order to justify the keeping or the use of things received, the religious reasons that he got them gratuitously when he ought rather to be motivated by real need. If our poverty permits us to accept gifts, they must nevertheless be used for all without discrimina-tion. This means that the religious may not have more because he receives more, but that all needs be judged by the same standard and that all be treated in the same manner. Whether the .goods to satisfy our needs comes from within or from outside the community is of lesser consequence. Two other observations must be made here in regard to gifts. Certain religious still declare that the refusal of anything offered to them by their parents, friends, or others, always constitutes a failure against poverty, indeed an injustice to the congregation. As it stands, this statement is inaccurate. The refusal of certain goods offered is sometimes required by our commitment to poverty. Such is the case when an individual or moral person does not need that which is offered, and in addition, the donor re-fuses any transfer of his gift. Such is likewise the case when, in response to a real need, a religious is offered something which can in no way be justified by the norms of simplicity. The second observation bears on the "intention of the donor." The intention clearly expressed by the donor does not suppress or replace the authorization required for the keeping and the use of goods. A religious cannot go to Europe simply because his parents have given him~the money for the trip. If competent authority refuses him" the permission and if the intention of the parents about the destination of their gift remains fixed, there is nothing left for the religious to do but to refuse or to return the money. However, in the majority of cases, it is not necessary to be scrupulous about respecting the intention of the donor. Many people offer us small gifts (the notion of "small" varies considerably, of course) and say to us: This is for you, for your personal needs, clothing, recreation, etc. If we took the time to explain our way of life to them as a community sharing a common fund, they would probably be quite happy to allow one of our companions to benefit from their generosity.Though we rarely explain this to them, we can ordinarily, without any qualms of conscience, pre-sume their understanding acceptance and put in the common fund what-ever we receive. 2116 / Revie.w for Religious, Volume 33, 1974/2 On the contrary, the intention of the °donor must be respected when the gift is made in the form of an inheritance or legacy. Let us make clear, however, that the religious to whom these goods have been offered alway~ has the right to refuse them. He even has the duty to do so in a case in which the, acceptance of an inheritance or legacy, involves obligations ~otaily or partially in violation of his religious 9ommitments. We must also understand that. authority does sometimes have a word to say in our ac-ceptance or refusal of such goods. The Moral Weight of Competence, Position, and Conduct In this matter of sharing, the professional status of religious some-times operates in his favor. Experience shows that in certain cases the religious~ ,possessing special qualifications obtains what he needs more easily than does his confrere who lacks such competence; he may even receive a ~urplu~ while the other is deprived of basic necessities. We have no intention of condemning competence; but under pain of closing our eyes to reality, we must acknowledge that this competence does sometimes exercise a moral influence on those presenting their needs, inclining them to ask for more than they really need. It may also influence those whose role is to insure .a just distribution of material resources in their application of the principle of real need. Experience0shows us that a past office may become another pretext for keeping and us_ing certain goods. The religious whose work required a specialized library, for example, may have a strong inclina.tion to keep it even after he no longer occupies the position which once required it. The one who needed a car for his work will be tempted to continue to keep it even after he is transferred to another office which in no way requires its use. Certain personal itnd marginal benefits connected with having a car make it very .painful for him to give it up. Again it may happen that one's present position Fay serve as an oc-casion for the granting or obtaining.of favors either for self or for others. Thus a superior, as soon as he is named,.,may ask for a ~'oom with a bath attached. Is this to help him fulfill his office"moi'e efffctively? Is such an installation really needed for his work? If not, how can he justify requesting it for himself while refusing it to others. It is no more justifiabl~ for a superior to use the pretext of his office to receive and to keep as long as he wishes all the magazines that come to the house. How can one approve such action? If he were in charge of formation and if, with the consent of the community or of authority, he had a prior right or even exclusive right to the use of a magazine published for formation personnel, nobody would complain. But no one can accept, and with reason, that an individual in virtue of his office, keep for himself as long as he likes the newspapers and magazines :meant for the use of all. Such practice is an obstacle to fraternal sharing. The one whose function Authentic Sharing in Community is to build community ought to be the first to ~remove from his own life anything that might compromise it. Let me add as a last moral influence a particular type of conduct in which a few religious indulge when making a request to authority. Their tone, gestures, and manner in general can be so high-handed that it be-comes almost impossible for the superior to refuse, even when he judges superfluous the object requested. When dealing with such persons he per-haps says to himself: It is easier to grant them what they want at once than to put up with the endless scenes and references to the matter that they will make if it is denied them. The superior may even justify his action by saying that he consented in "order to avoid a greater evil. All the same, that will not prevent those in the community from believing that at times a dif-ficult disposition does get results. While we understand the delicate posi-tion of authority in these instances, we must also recognize that such con-duct on the part of a member of the group can be an obstacle to fraternal sharing as it prevents the application of the principle: each according to need. The Influence of Social Convention According to current styles and in varying degrees, social convention may also influence both the religious in determining his needs, and the su-perior whose role is to assure that fraternal dimension of communal shar-ing proper to a religious household. Ordinarily we find it easier to ask for those things~ accepted by social convention than for those outside it. The superior in turn has a tendency to authorize more quickly those things it approves than those which are indifferent or contrary, to it. In this way social convention sometimes exerts a destructive influence on the charitable quality which ought to characterize our sharing from a common fund ac-cording to individual needs. . In considering the influence of social convention on religious, it cer-tainly explains at least in. part their attitude toward smoking, for example. The religious who smokes normally receives the necessary tobacco even though the expense occasioned ma~, be as high as two or three hundred dollars a year. The need to smoke, createdand developed by him, no longer requires critical evaluation but is taken for granted; and when the com-munity budget is prepared, there is no hesitation about'setting aside im-portant sums for it. ~ : It is not at all,certain, on the other h~nd, that the philatelist would so easily be allotted a similar sum for the purchas.e of new stamps. How does it happen that we consent so easily to satisfy the needs of the one who smokes but refuse those of the stamp collector? The pressure of social con-vention would seem to be the exp!anation. Under pain of being considered out of step with the times, religious cannot ignore social convention completelyi but by conforming to it with- 2811 / Review for Religious, Volume 33, 1974/2 out discrimination they can create needs the satisfaction of which amounts to real slavery and causes surprise and even scandal to others. Religious ought to be free enough, for example, in the matter of dress to avoid mak-ing an absolute of an outmoded costume and to consider relative those fashions which social convention seeks to impose on them everyday. This relativity can be expressed in one's choice of classic styles, simple and few in number, and much less subject to frequent and costly change than those passing fads which are here today and forgotten tomorrow. If it is normal for religious to be aware of social usage and to observe it when in their exterior relations they judge it necessary or useful, they must make the necessary effort to prevent it from entering so deeply into their lives as to create an endless chain of new needs. Let it suffice to men-tion the use of alcoholic drinks. Rare are those social functions, meals, and evenings from Which these are absent. If the religious is not on his guard, in multiplying his social relationships, he risks developing an acute need for alcohol. In this case, satisfaction can never be regarded as liberation, but rather a most insidious form of personal slavery. A Lack of Empathy Lack of empathy is particularly noticeable on those occasions when a religious must submit to a superior or to other members of his group his personal needs in view of an evaluation or control. It may happen that one's first reaction is to make comparisons with one's own needs, forgetting that each one is unique and therefore different; And so the superior says: I don't understand why you want to buy this secular outfit; I don'~ wear one and I've never suffered from not doing so. Or again: I never went to hear such and such a singer; I don't see what advantage you can get out of an evening so spent. Such a person never tries to put himself in the position of the one asking in order to be better able to understand his needs. He seeks rather to impose his own values on the other person or again to convince him that he does not have such a need because as superior he himself never experienced it. Without exactly realizing it, the superior may set himself up as a sort of prototype whom the others would profit by imitating. In following this sort of logic, ought he not require others to be hungry at the same time he is and with the same intensity, to be sleepy when he is, and to require the same number of hours of sleep? People incapable of this empathy are quite unable to evaluate the needs of others. We might as well say at the same time that they do not know how to exercise the service of authority, since they will never be able to understand those whom they are supposed to help. They may think they understand others, but as a matter of fact they understand only that which they can project on others. In general the person with little empathy is intolerant, not through ill will, but through his inability to put himself Authentic Sharing in Community / 2119 in the position of others. In wishing them well, he may even impose on them things that may cause them serious harm. Exclusive or Prior Right to Use The use of certain equipment may be necessary for a religious in the fulfillment of his office. It is considered essential for his work and he could not give it up without compromising the task confided to him. Such usage is valid and his confreres readily accept his use of what is neces-sary; but if they see that he has reserved for his exclusive use things for which he has no real need, at least at certain times, feelings of discontent-ment and a sense of injustice are not slow in surfacing. An example will help to make my point clear. Let us suppose that my work requires the use of a car quite regularly. On the days when I don't have to make any trips, those times when I travel by plane, am I going to lock up the car when I could just as well let others use it? If I put the car in the garage and the keys in my pocket, and if I force my com-panions to take the bus for their trips when the use of a car would be much appreciated and a real convenience for them, can I say sincerely that I am living the principle of fraternal sharing? In order to justify my conduct, I can no doubt find many reasons: A car is something one doesn't lend to just anybody; I must keep the things I need for my work in good condition; no one knows how to take care of them as I do; it is often a costly business to lend one's equipment; thb community has other cars for general use; etc. Underneath these reasons, all of which contain some element of truth, there is perhaps another which I won't admit: an undue attachment which makes me a slave of this thing. Deep down I prefer its safekeeping to communion with my brothers. In fact, my refusal to put the car at their disposition, far from favoring inter-personal relations, risks destroying them altogether and setting up barriers which are difficult to break down. If, after such conduct, I dare to repeat that goods should be oriented toward the well-being of the group and the strengthening of mutual relations, I must admit that in practice I sub-ordinate persons to things. If in my work, instead of this exclusive right to the use of equipment, I exercise what may be called a prior right to its use, I will quickly come to realize to what degree this type of use and the mentality which it de-velops favor fraternal union. Nobody denies that there are certain incon-veniences in this kind of sharing, that one risks finding one's things out of order, not in the same condition as one left them, etc. However, be-fore committing myself to sharing, ought I wait until no such risks are involved? If so, I mi~ght just as well say categorically that I refuse to share. Of course, everyone recognizes the existence of an occasional case when it would be better to keep one's tools exclusively for personal use. Such exceptions, however, do not modify the general rule according to 290 / Review ]or Religious, Volume 33, 1974/2 which the religious ought to exercise a prior right rather than an exclusive one to the use of those things necessary for the accomplishment of his duties. The first recognizes and favors fraternal sharing, while the second usually cuts it off abruptly. The Proprietor's Mentality Every religious making use of community goods can say, and he has reason: This property belongs to me; it has been put at my disposition by a moral person called the "province" or "institute." He may be inclined per-haps, in ~order to justify his poverty before those who do not believe in it anymore, to exaggerate the inconveniences of such a situation and to keep silent about the advantages which it affords. Sometimes he will even cover up his possessive attitude with regard to certain things saying that they do not belong to him and therefore he cannot lend them. Under pain of deny-ing the evidence, we must admit that some religious seem to have a pro-prietor's mentality with regard to goods belonging to the province or in-stitute. Such a mentality is an obstacle to fraternal sharing. If, in order to illustrate my idea, I use the community treasurer as an example, it is not that this mentality is more widespread among them than among other religious, but because frequent reference is made to them when this topic is discussed. In fact, it often happens that the treasurer acts as if he were the proprietor of the community's goods. He feels free to ask ques-tions, even indiscreet ones, about the sums of money requested, while actu-ally it is his business simply to hand over what has been authorized. He scolds others for expenditures which he has no right to judge. He may even insist on an itemized account which normally is given to the superior. When he gives out money, his gesture is marked by a pained expression as if part-ing with it hurt him physicallly. If we describe it at its worst, we might say that in keeping the purse-strings, he seems to keep the whole community on a,.leash. This caricature, although rough!y drawn, is not entirely the fruit of the imagination. If I have exaggerated some situations, I have reproduced others with an accuracy that no one can deny. It is not surprising if religious, subjected to caprices of this kind, no longer dare ask the community even for what is necessary, but arrange to obtain it outside, or keep a part of their salary or gifts received, in order to satisfy their needs. The changing of the name "procurator" to "economist," "treasurer," "controller," or whatever, does not remedy the evil. The real problem is not one of vocabulary, but of one's way of thinking, and it is this that must be changed. The bursar must recognize, in theory and in practice, that the property confided to his administration belongs to the community., that his task consists in managing it with competence, and in distributing it amiably to religious whose needs have been approved by authority. His office must not be the scene of daily contention, but rather a place where love operates under the guise of both gift and welcome. Authentic Sharing in Commitnity / Let me express sincere appreciation to all those religious who fill their post as treasurer with competency, interior detachment, and in a spirit of service. Everyone knows that theirs is often a thankless task, and one we could not do without. In accomplishing it with that joy and tact which love knows how to exercise, they can do much towards the realization of the ideal of fraternal sharing according to the real needs of each one. Fear, Embarrassment, Shame, Scruples in Regard to Asking Strange as it may appear, there are still some religious who are unable to express their real needs, who prefer to deprive themselves of what they need rather than ask for it. These religious, either by temperament or for-mation, have developed in themselves a fear, an embarrassment, shame, or even scruples about asking. Among them are those who are not earning, and on this account dare not mention their needs. Some of them think of themselves as a burden to the community. While helping these religious to free themselves from whatever prevents them" from asking for what they need, authority must take the initiative, offering them and even giving them whatever they may need. If this is considered an exaggeration, it is better to fail on the side of kindness and attention than on that of indifference and privation. It is always easier to notice the people who abuse than those whom we abuse. There also exists on the part of some a certain shame and embarrass-ment about asking which may be the result of our manner of community living and sharing in the past. I understand the uneasiness of those of thirty, forty, fifty, and more who still ask local authority or the treasurer for stamps, letter-paper, tooth-paste, soap, etc., but such a practice of com, munity sharing can no longer be justified in the name of poverty. Though long since outmoded, it has not yet totally disappeared. In my opinion it would be so much simpler, so much more adult and reas6nable, to put all these things for common use in a place where each one could take what he needs as he needs it. It is useless to complain of possible abuse in order to refuse such an elementary practice. The existence of such abuse is inevitable, whatever the manner of living the principle of common sharing. Would it not be better that the abuses accompany an adult practice of sharing instead of a childish and embarrassing one? In conclusion on this point let me say that one of the gravest abuses of the practice of religious poverty is that form of dependence which encourages and even develops personal irresponsi-bility. The Application of Various Formulas for Sharing Though there are several formulas for the sharing of go~ds, I do not in-tend here to present the advantages and inconveniences of each. I wish only to point out that the manner of applying any valid formula is able to trans-form it into an obstacle to fraternal sharing. Take for example the individual 292 / Review ]or Religious, F'olume 33, 1974/2 budget. It is, for religious in general, a practical manner for determining needs and when approved, of receiving whatever is necessary to meet them. This does not mean, however, that such a formula is best for all the religious of an institute, or of a province, or of a local community. There are some people who find a personal budget more of a useless bother than a help in practicing religious poverty. Why impose it on them then? On the other hand, why forbid it to the rest of the community just because some do not find it helpful? In ~. word, fraternal sharing is not free when the individual budget is refused or imposed on all alike. In those communities in which, in order to respect personal needs, the community budget is made obligatory and the individual budget optional, uniformity may compromise the quality of fraternal sharing. As regards the community budget it is rare, thanks be to God, to hear people use the argu-ment of uniformity to obtain more, to grant or to refuse permission. Wherever uniformity is the sole criterion for making requests or granting authorization, fraternal charity in the treatment of local groups is often ignored. Though two communities may be made up of the same number of persons, it does not follow that the needs of one be identical to the needs of the other. To respect each group in its uniqueness requires ordinarily both diversity and plurality in the manner of treatment. It is the same for individuals. How can anyone justify uniformity in the amount of money granted annually to religious who make use of a budget? Let us take the matter of clothing, for example. The one who is small and well-built will surely have an advantage over another less well-proportioned, with bulges here and there, not to mention fiat feet! Some would remedy this situation by asking that the first person hand in what he has left over, and that the second ask for what he still needs. However, one must admit that the latter remains in an awkward position as it is always harder to ex-tend the hand to receive than to turn in a surplus. In the end, would it not be simpler and more charitable to leave each one free to evaluate his cloth-ing needs and to ask for the money necessary to take care of them. The individual budget plan by which a uniform lump sum is given to all religious also presents, in actual practice, certain facets detrimental to fraternal sharing. Let us suppose that each religious of a local community receives $2500 annually, and that it is left to him to allocate this sum as he sees fit. Such procedure risks creating unjustifiable inequality. Religious whose parents live a few miles away will spend very little to goto see them regularly, while another having parents living at a distance, can visit them only rarely and under pain of seriously jeopardizing his budget. Isn't this a form of discrimination? Another weakness inherent in this plan is that the religious who can economize will manage to procure all sorts of valuable objects (record-play-ers, tape-recorders, etc.) and will have the clear impression, even the con- Authentic Sharing in Community / 293 viction, that these belong to h, im. Of course, he will feel free to take them with him on changing residenc~. As a last obstacle to fraternal sharing, let me add the refusal a priori of approving several different plains and allowing them to be used within the local community as the memlSers judge best. One would respect individual needs more surely if some wer~ permitted to use an individual budget, while others were given an allowan+e for expenses, and still others received the money necessary as the need arose. There are some very deserving religious who do not have any use for a~ individual budget or for a regular allowance and who desire to continue to~ practice poverty by asking for things as they need them. We violate the fraternal quality of our sharing if we impose on them a plan which burdens rather than frees them in their service of God. Conclusion The practice of fraternal sfiaring to which we are bound bestows on our I . community of goods its evangehcal and religious significance. Indeed, it is in order to strengthen the fraiernal bond which unites us and to express it before the world that we have chosen to put all our possessions into a com-mon fund, and to share them according to the real needs of each one. The obstacles that this sharing mebts in practice prove that it is difficult for all of us, because of our sinful condition, to observe perfectly that which we desire with all our hearts. However, the rehg~ous who recognizes the diffi-culties and makes an effort to leliminate them from his life, demonstrates his faith in those values for whic~ the fraternal community stands and his de-sire to collaborate construct~ve, ly in building it, depending on the support of Jesus Christ, thecenter of oui" lives, for a more perfect realization of it. The General Chapter of Affairs Joseph F. Gallen, S.J. Joseph F. Gallen, S.J., a specialist !n canon law for religious, writes from St. Joseph'.s Church: 321 Willing's Alley; Philadelphia, Pennsylvania 19106. Pre-chapter Preparation : Pre-chapter preparation, despite its evident need, was almost univer-sally unknown before post-Vatican II general and provincial chapters. The delegates'to the general chapter should be elected hbout a year before the assehably of the chapter. This will make it possible to have the pre-chapter committees constituted predominantly of chapter members from the begin-ning. The superior general and his council, or a committee appointed by him, could have already inaugurated the work by securing the proposals from the members of the institute and having them arranged according to subject matter. These could be given almost immediately to the pre-chapter committees. The delegates may be elected earlier than a date determined in the constitutions, e.g., six months before the assembly of the chapter. This determination of time is a very accidental aspect of the law, and a rea-sonable cause excuses from it. The more fundamental content of such a law is to elect the delegates at a time that will give the best possible preparation for the chapter. I think myself that a committee of more than five is gener-ally less efficient. If the quantity of the work so demands, several parallel or sub-committees can be designated. As many as possible of those on a com-mittee should be competent in the field of the committee. Each institute should know from its experience of recent chapters and from the problems now facing it just what committees are needed. There should be a steering or co-ordinating committee. Other committees have been on the religious life, vows, constitutions, government, liturgy, formation, apostolate, finances, 294 The General Chapter o] Affairs / 295 retirement, and habit. Canon law has no legislation on committees. There-fore, it depends on the particular institute to determine the committees and their work; the members and chairpersons may be elected or appointed or be designated partially by both election and appointment; the chairpersons may be elected by the members of the particular committee. Manner of Pre-chapter Committee Preparation The one directing the pre-chapter preparation gives the proposals or chapter matter to the chairpersons of the pertinent committees, who in turn distribute them to the individual members of the committees to ~work up, dividing the matter as evenly as possible. Let us suppose that the following proposal has been assigned to an individual of the government committee: the term of office of the superior general should be reduced from six to five (four) years, with only one immediate re-election permitted. The committee member is to work up a report on this proposal in the manner of a secretary, an objective researcher, not as a supporter or antag-onist of the proposal or as a policy maker. The chapter makes the decision on enactments and policy, not the committee. The first thing the committee member does is to write down the number of the proposal, if these are num-bered. Identical and almost identical proposals are to be treated together on the same report. The committee member therefore next notes on the report the number that submitted it, for:example: 36 handed in this proposal for a five and 15 for a four year term. He then expresses the proposal in one statement or in parts but both in such a way as to permit a yes-no discussion and a yes-no decision. He next, under the heading~of sense, gives any ex-planations of the proposal, always being complete throughout the report but as ~clear and brief as possible. Submitted proposals, are almost, always wordier and more obscure than the example given above, but the term "im-mediate" in the example above could be briefly explained. He could well conclude the section on sense by a statement such as the following: The pi'oposal contains two ideas, a five (four) instead o1~ a"six year term andonly one immediate re-election. The heart of his report is in the following sec-tion, in which he gives all~ the reasons for and then all the reasons against the proposal, noting when any of these reasons has greater weight for or against the four than the five year term. He ends the report with his recom-mended decision: to be accepted, to be rejected, to be accepted with modi-fications. It is evident that the reasons for the acceptance or rejection are the favorable or unfavorable reasons he has already listed. He should add his reasons for suggesting modifications. Copies of this report are distributed to all the committee members. They are to be given adequate time for its study. When a sufficient number of reports are ready, they are to be dis-cussed in a committee meeting. The committee confirms, rejects in whole or in part, and corrects the report of the individual member, which thus becomes the committee report. The committee vote on the report and its :296 / Review for Religious, Volume 33, 1974/2 distinct parts should be included on it, e.g., 3 for, 2 against. Reports for all the proposals to be discussed in any period of sessions should be ready be-fore that period begins. These should be distributed to the capitulars at least on their arrival so that they can be properly studied. The failure to have such reports is a primary cause for the many unreflecting, inefficient, and slow general chapters we have had in the post-Vatican II years. Any religious experienced in chapters should see the need of reports of the type described above. They are demanded by evident facts. The primary such fact is that a chapter should make its decisions from convictions based on solid reasons. This will certainly not be attained unless there is a thorough investigation and study of the facts and reasons. It is also a sufficiently evident and most pertinent fact that many of the capitulars will not study the proposals beforehand. The reports will help to lessen their uninformed voting. Many capitulars will not be able to understand some proposals with-out such a report, for example, those who have had no experience in han-dling large sums of money can find financial proposals difficult to understand, and a religious who has not been in the novitiate since he left it thirty years ago will find. many ideas on formation most difficult to grasp. Proposals handed in by chapter members during the chapter should be processed through the pertinent committee in the manner described above. Subject Matter of the General Chapter of Affairs The norm of the practice of the Holy See for this has been the more im-portant matters that concern the entire institute. If the matter is not more important or does not concern the entire institute, it appertains to the ordi-nary government of the general, provincial, or local superiors. In the con-crete this matter has consisted of the proposals submitted by the members, provincial chapters, and the general capitulars during the time of the general chapter. The first observation is that the proposals under one aspect can readily be insufficient. Almost universally the proposals on a particular matter do not touch, at least adequately, all the more important aspects, difficulties, and problems of the particular field. Quite often they are concerned only with its accidental and lesser aspects. Very frequently also the admittance of a proposal will demand as a consequence or antecedently presume another proposal which has not been submitted. In all such cases, the pertinent com-mittee should add the required proposals, noting on each its committee source and the reasons why it was submitted by the committee. It is not very intelligent to have the submitted proposals as the subject matter, with-out designating anyone to point out and supply for the omissions and the lack of balance. In such a system, it can be almost a mere accident that the general chapter faces all the real problems of the institute. There has to be a way of rejecting very expeditiously the proposals that are less important and general or otherwise evidently inadmissible. Each The General Chapter of Affairs / 297 committee should list all such proposals submitted to it, and very early sub-mit this list to the co-ordinating committee. The latter should go over the lists and have them duplicated and distributed to the chapter members. Sufficient time should be granted for the proper study of the lists, and the chapter is then to be asked to reject all of them in the one vote. The per-mitted recourse against rejection should be of the following type. If a capitu-lar, not the one who submitted the proposal as such, believes that any such rejected proposal is worthy of a committee report and chapter discussion, he should hand in this proposal with his reasons for its repeated presenta-tion. The verdict on confirming or rescinding the rejection should not be made by the original rejecting committee but by the co-ordinating com-mittee. This will avoid having the same committee as both judge and de-fendant in the recourse. Greater Reduction of Matter Is Necessary The reduction of the work of the general chapter has to be much greater than the mere immediate rejection of proposals considered less important, less general, or otherwise evidently inadmissible in the past. No general chapter can s.atisfactorily handle a thousand or two thousand proposals. This is true even if the pre-chapter prepa.ration is most thorough and com-plete, The number of proposals that confronted very many post-Vatican II general chapters was prostrating. Nor is it sensible to think of more fre-quent general chapters; we have too many now. Not a great number of them have been religiously effective, and there is nothing in multiplication that augurs greater effectiveness. Perhaps the remedy is to cut down very severely the work of the general chapter to the particular matters that are very highly important and urgent and to give much greater attention to policies than to enactments and changes of enactments and laws in particular matters. Present Mentality Few will now even question the statement that we are faced by a crisis of authority. Pope Paul VI has often spoken~ of this crisis, for example: To mention another: there is the excessive emphasis on the right of the indi-vidual to do as he pleases, which leads to the rejection of any and all limits imposed from without and of any and all authority, however legitimate it may be (May 25, 1968, The Pope Speaks, 13 , 222). In this way a mentality is spread which would like to claim that dis-obedience is legitimate and justified in order to protect the freedom that the sons of God should enjoy (January 29, 1970, ibid., 15 , 54). Since therefore it is a visible society, the Church must necessarily have the power and function of making laws and seeing to it that they are obeyed. The Church's members in turn are obliged in conscience to observe these laws (December 13, 1972, ibid., 17 , 376). This mentality of hostility tO authority and law is one of the very im-portant and urgent matters that a general chapter must face and strive to 2911 / Review ]or Religious, Volume 33, 1974/2 change, but it is also a fact that makes one question the enactment of many laws at present. Matters Excluded from the Competence of General Chapters Possessing Experimental Authority These chapters obviously cannot change ( 1 ) divine law, whether natural or revealed; (2) and without the previous appro'~al of the Sacred Congrega-tion for Religious and Secular Institutes these chapters may not put into effect anything that is contrary to the common law (canonical prescriptions, laws of Vatican II, and other laws and decrees of the Holy See); nor (3) make any change in the purpose, nature, and characteristics of any institute or in the Rule of an institute (Ecclesiae sanctae, n6. 6). Proposals These are made by the members of the institute and by provincial chap-ters. All are to be encouraged to make proposals; all are equally to be counseled to make only good proposals, and this means good for the entire institute. A proposal is to be judged by its content, but an obscure and un-duly long proposal is a certain indication of insufficient thought. The insuffi-ciency in this: case frequently extends to the content of the proposal. To find l~roposals a religious, should go over the life of the individual members and of,the community immediately with God, the community life, and the life of work. He should go through all pertinent books, e.g., the constitutions. He is to evaluate and to find ways to correct and improve the life of sanc-tity, the apostolate, the present policies and trends of the institute, its public image in the Church and in.general. He should evaluate, all innovations of the post-Vatican II years. Have they succeeded, failed, and in each case to what extent? Have the members of the institute become better religious, better participants in the community life, better apostles? What are the big problems facing the institute today? What is their solution? What is the re-ligious' effectiveness of superiors, their councilors, those in charge of forma-tion, of the works of the al:iOstolate? Is the tenor and style of life in the houses conducive to the religious life, the apostolate, a religiously satisfy-ing community life? Are your proposals solid, progressive without being im-prudent? Do they all propose freedom from something that is difficult and demands sacrifice? Proposals must be signed only and to the extent that this is com-manded by the law of the institute. A final day, well ahead of the opening of the general chapter, must be determined for the handing in of proposals. All, including general capitulars, should hand in their proposals during this tim& The general capitulars retain the right of making proposals during the chapter: Toward the close of the chapter, a date is to be determined be-yond which no proposal will be accepted. All of these provisions are to enable the committees to process the proposals properly and in due time. The General Chapter o/ Affairs / 299. The right to make proposals is determined by the law or practice of the particular institute. Those who do not have this right may suggest proposals, preferably in writing, to ~those who do enjoy the right. The latter may but are .not obliged to accept merely suggested proposals (see Review ]or Re-ligious, 23 , 359-64). Position Papers and Questionnaires These were the high hurdle and wide stream obstacles in the procedure of. so many special general chapters, and few of these chapters landed fully on the opposite bank. Position papers were also at times a means on the part of committees of appropriating to themselves the policy making func-tion of the chapter. Questionnaires were frequently the substitution of a none too reasonable head count for a vote given because of convincing reasons. A background paper or questionnaire is only rarely necessary or advisable, e.g, an intelligent vote, for or against a particular proposal can demand a brief historical description. If so, the background paper should be prepared.~ Authority of the Superior General in Pre-chapter Preparation The superior general, assisted by his council, has authority over the entire pre-chapter preparation. This is evident from the fact that, outside of the general chapter, there is no one else on the general level of authority and from canon 502, which places the institute under his authority (see Ecclesiae sanctae, no. 4). Frequently at least a superior general gives ample delegation to. another religious to direct and supervise this preparation, e.g., to the Chairperson, of the steering or co-ordinating committee. However, the superior general can always lessen or~'withdraw such authority, lie may also always step in to correct and guide particular matters, individuals, or committees. Post-Vatican II general and provinc, ial chapters have often been vanquished in the pre-chapter preparation. The game was lost before it began. The superior general is not arbitrarily to interfere in or hamper the, work of the committees, but he should be completely aware of what is going on in all committees. He should be very sensitive to a too conservative or a too leftist~ approach and, even more practically, ~to a group that is unduly and wrongly influencing the pre-chapter preparation. ' Attaining a:Universal Voice in Chapters Especially since about 1965 we have had a constant clamor that the religious of temporary vows or other commitment be permitted to be dele-gates to the general and provincial chapters. This has been an outstandingly unreal issue of recent years.The clear fact has been that the young were talking in the chapters and pre-chapter preparation. The voice that was not being heard was that of the older and of many middle-aged religious and chapter members. This has been true also in other discussion groups, for example, local community discussions. Our need and problem of the-mo- 300 / Review ]or Religious, Volume 33, 1974/2 ment is to hear the older and the middle-aged religious. I doubt that this can be attained at this time except by having the chapter discussions start with small discussion groups. Each group should be composed of religious of all ages. This system would demand a sufficiently competent chairperson and secretary in each group, the report by the secretary of the group, and the distribution of copies of the reports of each group and of the composite report of all the groups before the common discussion of the matter in the whole chapter. The attainment of the most accurate and efficient procedure in this matter demands a very thorough study. Discussion groups are a time consuming means. They could be employed only for the more serious mat-ters. My own sincere judgment, based on the observation of chapters, is that such a means is necessary to hear the voice of the older and of many mid-dle- aged religious, especially of sisters. Part of the factual basis of this judg-ment is the lack of the older and middle-aged voice manifested very gen-erally in post-Vatican II chapters, that is, the effects that.revealed an inex-perienced, imprudent, and exaggerated origin. As far back as 1901, the Roman Congregations governing religious have refused to approve those of temporary vows or other commitment as dele-gates in the general and provincial chapters. Chapter Principles The preceding section on proposals lists fairly adequately the aspects and fields that can give rise to proposals. Proposals can also be drawn from the principles that should guide chapters, communities, and individuals, which we shall give in this section. The supreme principle is that all should seek the greater good of the Church and of the whole institute, not merely of some part of it or of some group in it. Seek the good not merely of the young, but also of the middle-aged and the aged. A high degree of differ-ence in some aspect of life that is verified in any particular country or re-gion should receive its proper consideration. This is to be true not merely of the United States but of any other country, of Germany, France, Italy, England, Japan. Differences do not exist in all aspects of life. The American has no less need of prayer and mortification than the Italian. Obviously no nation is to give the impression of being superior to all other nations. All should retain all the good of the past and be willing to accept all good ideas of the present and of the future. It is equally the duty of all to oppose anything that is useless or harmful to the institute or its members. Any false principle such as disobedience, especially if public, to the govern-ing or teaching authority of the Church should be immediately rejected. The goal in prayer is not freedom but a more universal life of constant prayer. The Holy Spirit guides practically all of us by the ordinary way, and this implies that our problems, difficulties and their solution are at least gen-erally ordinary. Little will be gained from a study of oriental mysticism or concentration or from emphasizing the charismatic. Much will be gained to The General Chapter o] Affairs / 301 the extent that it is realized that the difficulties in prayer are the very ordi-nary things of the lack of desire for sanctity of life, the unwillingness to make the sacrifices that such a life demands, the lack of a realization that prayer demands a constant effort, an impersonal spirituality, a poor introduction to mental prayer, a complicated system or machinery of mental prayer, a neglect of spiritual reading, a life that is merely activist, natural, secular, and similar ordinary things. If a chapter accepts open placement, how can the institute staff missions, colleges, hospitals, schools, homes for the aged? Can there be a generally satisfying community life when there is unlimited home visiting and unlimited going out for diversion? W.hy always leap to the new, the youthful, the leftist? Certainly sometimes the old, the moderate, the conservative is the true, the relevant, the practical. Why run to manage-ment consultants before you have tried a thorough investigation, study, and planning on your own? If any advisers gave false and imprudent advice, this advice can be the perfect mirror of what was wanted. List everything that your institute has adopted in renewal and adaptation. How many of these have helped the members to become better religious, better apostles, better Catholics? It is certainly not easy to start all over; neither is it any too comfortable to be on a plane that is speeding to certain extinction. The dominant thought of any chapter has to be the spiritual, the su-pernatural, the eternal not only with regard to the personal lives of the in-dividual religious but also to the apostolate and community life. Natural development and fulfillment and social work are important but not primary, nor are they the soul of the religious life or of its apostolate. Reject ideas and proposals that are disproportionately expensive. All experimentation in the Church and much more its worship should be carried out in a manner that is adult, mature, dignified, restrained rather than undisciplined and reckless, and not marred by the extremes of either the right or the left. The common saying is that religious dress is not an important question. This is true of religious dress in the abstract and considered merely in itself. In its effects and ramifications, religious dress, especially of women, is certainly an important question. In the past the error was to identify the old with the true, the good, and the relevant; the same error is verified now with regard to the new. Re-evaluate every post-Vatican II experiment and change. In-vestigate every question and adopt the solution that the facts demand or counsel; do not start off with a new structure or theory. The goal is only secondarily to renew and adapt the institute; the primary purpose must be to influence the religious to renew and adapt themselves. The thrust is pri-marily personal, not institutional. There is one essential test of past, present, and future experimentation. Does it produce greater sanctity of life, a deeper and wider community life, a greater spiritual effect in the apostolate? One of the most important qualities demanded in superiors and chapters today is the courage to stand with the wise and oppose the foolish. How many of your schools, colleges, and other institutions are very secular? Can you 302 / Review ]or Religious, Volume 33, 1974/2 justifiably allow this to continue and progress? Take anything and every-thing that is good and helpful from psychology and sociology, but never forget that they are no substitute for revelation, morality, or spiritual theol-ogy. How many factual studies were made that proved the later difficulties and defections of religious were found especially in those who entered im-mediately after high school? Honestly face the vocation problem and any of its causes that may exist in the individual and collective lives of your re-ligious. It is possible to emphasize the dignity of the married life without denigrating the religious life. Is the life style of your religious in conformity with the deep totality of the religious consecration? Do all things conduce to greater sanctity, better community life, and a more spiritual apostolate? Are we complaining about the lack of inspiration in the religious life after we buried it in selfishness, materialism, and naturalism? Adopt only what gives at least solid probability of success; otherwise your conduct is at least ordinarily imprudent or even rash. Procedure in lhe Chapter The chapter procedure should be kept as simple and uncomplicated as possible. The need of recourse to parliamentary procedure should be infre-quent, and each institute is now in a position to list the few parliamentary rules that are practical. The secretary of the chapter is to post the agenda for the sessions of a day at least on the preceding evening. It can be the understanding that the proposals or matters are to be taken in the order of the reports distributed to
The Philippines has made significant progress in empowering women and in advancing gender equality. The government's policy on gender equality and women's empowerment has prioritized women's economic empowerment, advancing human rights and enhancing gender-responsive local governance. All these priority concerns are integral components of poverty reduction programs in the Philippines. The Philippines has made significant progress in empowering women and in advancing gender equality. Since the government introduced a constitution in 1987 affirming the equality of women, it has pursued a number of initiatives to mainstream gender concerns in national policies and programs. A development plan for women was launched in 1987, followed by a plan for gender-responsive development, 1995-2025, coordinated by the National Commission on the Role of Filipino women. In 2004, the commission drafted a framework plan for women that identify three priority concerns to meet the objectives of gender equality and women's empowerment: economic empowerment of women, protection and fulfillment of women's human rights, and gender-responsive governance. Projects that support these priorities will facilitate more equitable development across the Philippines, including supporting the full participation of women in political processes and governance in the international and national local level, strengthening gender-sensitive and inclusive programs and mechanisms with civil society, and increasing women's access to economic resources such as capital, technology, information, markets, and training.
International audience We provide evidence on the link between the policy response to the SARS CoV-2 pandemic and conflicts worldwide. We combine daily information on conflict events and government policy responses to limit the spread of SARS CoV-2 to study how demonstrations and violent events vary following shutdown policies. We use the staggered implementation of restriction policies across countries to identify the dynamic effects in an event study framework. Our results show that imposing a nation-wide shutdown is associated with a reduction in the number of demonstrations, which suggests that public demonstrations are hampered by the rising cost of participation. However, the reduction is short-lived, as the number of demonstrations are back to their pre-restriction levels in two months. In contrast, we observe that the purported increase in mobilization or coordination costs, following the imposition of restrictions, is not followed by a drop of violent events that involve organized armed groups. Instead, we find that the number of events, on average, increases slightly following the implementation of the restriction policies. The rise in violent events is most prominent in poorer countries, with higher levels of polarization, and in authoritarian countries. We discuss the potential channels underlying this heterogeneity.
We revisit the canonical policy of eliminating capital taxation by increasing labor taxation in a endogenous-labor, heterogeneous-agent model with income and wealth heterogeneity, when the government is subject to a strict (per-period) balancedbudget constraint. By contrast with its non-budget neutral equivalent-associated with a constant tax rate over time and a permanent increase in the level of public debt-we show that the obtained endogenous path for the labor tax rate is sharply increasing in the initial period and decreasing over time. The policy then generates a deeper recession in the short-run and a greater expansion in the long-run, as well as a smaller decline in wealth inequality associated with a reduced incentive to save for precautionary motives. Overall, the policy still generates significant losses in average welfare.
We propose a model with involuntary unemployment, incomplete markets, and nominal rigidity, in which the effects of government spending are state-dependent. An increase in government purchases raises aggregate demand, tightens the labor market and reduces unemployment. This in turn lowers unemployment risk and thus precautionary saving, leading to a larger response of private consumption than in a model with perfect insurance. The output multiplier is further amplified through a composition effect, as the fraction of high-consumption households in total population increases in response to the spending shock. These features, along with the matching frictions in the labor market, generate significantly larger multipliers in recessions than in expansions. As the pool of job seekers is larger during downturns than during expansions, the concavity of the job-finding probability with respect to market tightness implies that an increase in government spending reduces unemployment risk more in the former case than in the latter, giving rise to countercyclical multipliers.
In this paper we explore the effects of alternative combinations of fiscal and monetary policies under different income distribution regimes. In particular, we aim at evaluating fiscal rules in economies subject to banking crises and deep recessions. We do so using an agent-based model populated by heterogeneous capital- and consumption-good forms, heterogeneous banks, workers/consumers, a Central Bank and a Government. We show that the model is able to reproduce a wide array of macro and micro empirical regularities, including stylised facts concerning financial dynamics and banking crises. Simulation results suggest that the most appropriate policy mix to stabilise the economy requires unconstrained counter-cyclical fiscal policies, where automatic stabilisers are free to dampen business cycles fluctuations, and a monetary policy targeting also employment. Instead, discipline-guided" fiscal rules such as the Stability and Growth Pact or the Fiscal Compact in the Eurozone always depress the economy, without improving public finances, even when escape clauses in case of recessions are considered. Consequently, austerity policies appear to be in general self-defeating. Furthermore, we show that the negative effects of austere fiscal rules are magnified by conservative monetary policies focused on ination stabilisation only. Finally, the effects of monetary and fiscal policies become sharper as the level of income inequality increases.
The paper investigates whether US and UK have followed sustainable debt policies during the period 1970-2012, by exploring the reaction of the primary surplus as percentage of GDP to variations in the debt to GDP ratio, as a powerful test. The main results reveal that the coefficient for UK is negative and significant, while for the US, we are unable to find a clear-cut evidence of the sustainability of public debt as the coefficient is also negative, but insignificant. In the case of the UK, the outputs reveal that government did not raise the primary surplus as the government debt increased rather reduced it and this reduction has been significant. On the other hand, the significance of the reaction coefficient demonstrates that the reaction of the primary surplus to increases in public debt varies over time. All these evidences allow us to appreciate that the fiscal policy in the UK is not sustainable in the sense of satisfying of intertemporal budgetary constrain.
In this paper we explore the effects of alternative combinations of fiscal and monetary policies under different income distribution regimes. In particular, we aim at evaluating fiscal rules in economies subject to banking crises and deep recessions. We do so using an agent-based model populated by heterogeneous capital- and consumption-good forms, heterogeneous banks, workers/consumers, a Central Bank and a Government. We show that the model is able to reproduce a wide array of macro and micro empirical regularities, including stylised facts concerning financial dynamics and banking crises. Simulation results suggest that the most appropriate policy mix to stabilise the economy requires unconstrained counter-cyclical fiscal policies, where automatic stabilisers are free to dampen business cycles fluctuations, and a monetary policy targeting also employment. Instead, discipline-guided" fiscal rules such as the Stability and Growth Pact or the Fiscal Compact in the Eurozone always depress the economy, without improving public finances, even when escape clauses in case of recessions are considered. Consequently, austerity policies appear to be in general self-defeating. Furthermore, we show that the negative effects of austere fiscal rules are magnified by conservative monetary policies focused on ination stabilisation only. Finally, the effects of monetary and fiscal policies become sharper as the level of income inequality increases.
We estimate three international price elasticities using exporters data: the elasticity of firm exports to export price, tariff and real exchange rate shocks. In standard trade and international macroeconomics models these three elasticities should be equal. We find that this is far from being the case. We use French firm level electricity costs to instrument for export prices and provide a first estimate of the elasticity of firm-level exports to export prices. The elasticity of exports is highest, around 5, for export prices followed by tariffs, around 2, and is lowest for the real exchange rate, around 0.6. The large discrepancy between these elasticities makes us conclude that the international elasticity puzzle is actually worse than previously thought. Moreover, we show that because exporters absorb part of tariffs and exchange rate movements, estimates of export elasticities that do not take into account export prices are biased.
Many books studying the sources of the law and many books studying the Internet law have already been published. This thesis differs from these books: it studies the original sources, not only the state law and the customs; and it is a scientific work and not a practical work. Observations of the Internet law can serve thoughts on the currents and futures continuities and changes of the sources of the law. Studying this young and special law is like studying an example of global law and postmodern law, revealing the specifics of the law of tomorrow, when the modern law centered on the state will be replaced by a different law, whose properties gather those of the Internet. Gradually, the conventional sources are substituted by new sources. This thesis wants to be a witness of these changes in the sources of the law.The Internet has changed time and space. It transformed the Earth, humanity, life and society. The law has probably changed too. In terms of positive law, the Internet law only shares some characteristics with the ordinary laws of the twentieth century. In terms of legal science and legal thought, lawyers should perhaps avoid analyzing the law of tomorrow with tools and lessons from yesterday. Studying the Internet law invites to build new tools and frameworks in order to describe and explain as accurately as possible the reality of the law. These problems led to the writing of this book. By focusing on specific legal objects that reflect the twenty-first century law, it wants to promote the understanding and the acceptance of changes in the law. Specifically, the objective is to contribute to the renovation of the sources of the law thought when the modern theory appears increasingly archaic because the number, the identity, the architecture and the balance of the sources is permanently evolving. Firstly, maybe it should now be considered that the distinction between public sources and private sources is the summa divisio of the sources of the law. ; Le renouvellement des sources du droit peut être étudié sous deux aspects : qualitatif et quantitatif. Il y a renouvellement des sources du droit d'un point de vue qualitatif lorsque des sources d'une nouvelle espèce, d'un nouveau genre ou même d'une nouvelle nature apparaissent. Il y a renouvellement des sources du droit d'un point de vue quantitatif lorsque des sources préexistantes mais desquelles jaillissait peu de droit deviennent des fleuves de normes, au point de concurrencer les sources ordinaires de règles juridiques que sont la loi et la jurisprudence. En ce livre, le renouvellement des sources du droit est abordé sous l'un et l'autre angles, cela à l'aune d'une branche du droit particulière : le droit de la communication par internet. Observer cette forme de « droit global » serait riche d'enseignements à l'égard de l'actualité et, plus encore, de l'avenir du droit. Ainsi de nouveaux objets normatifs, hier encore inconnus des juristes, peuvent-ils être étudiés : codes privés, chartes, usages, conditions générales d'utilisation, contrats-types, normes managériales, normes techniques, mais aussi modes alternatifs de résolution des conflits, labels, standards, protocoles, meilleures pratiques, indicateurs, algorithmes etc. Ces nouveaux objets normatifs et les phénomènes de « guerre des normes », de plurinormativité et d'internormativité qui les accompagnent interrogent l'orthodoxie juridique moderne mais aussi et plus fondamentalement l'État de droit, la démocratie, certains droits et libertés fondamentaux ou encore l'intérêt général.L'internet a condensé le temps et dilué l'espace. Il a ainsi profondément transformé les sociétés ; et l'univers juridique, dans ses différentes dimensions, est nécessairement affecté. Aussi la fréquentation de son droit invite-t-elle à élaborer de nouveaux outils afin de décrire et expliquer les « faits normatifs » qui le constituent. L'observation du droit de la communication par internet est ici au service d'une réflexion relative aux continuités, aux ruptures et aux mouvements actuels et à venir des sources du droit. Cette branche du droit est révélatrice de ce à quoi le paysage juridique pourrait ressembler demain, lorsque le droit moderne stato-centré aura été irrémédiablement débordé par un droit « en réseau » dont les propriétés ressemblent fort à celles du réseau mondial qu'est l'internet. Progressivement, les sources auparavant premières deviennent secondaires, celles qui hier demeuraient à l'arrière-plan se retrouvent sur le devant de la scène juridique, tandis que de nouveaux foyers de normes ô combien singuliers apparaissent. L'objet de cet ouvrage est de constituer un témoignage de ce renouvellement des lieux et des modes de production des normes en cours, un renouvellement qui touche les sources privées beaucoup plus que les sources publiques, posant dès lors la question d'un immobilisme préjudiciable de l'État et des organisations internationales.
Issue 27.5 of the Review for Religious, 1968. ; EDITOR R. F. Smith, S.J. ASSOCIATE EDITORS Everett A. Diederich, S.J. Augustine G. Ellard, S.J. ASSISTANT EDITORS Ralph F. Taylor, S.J. John C. Treloar, S.J. QUESTIONS AND ANSWERS EDITOR Joseph F. Gallen, S.J. C~orrespondence with the editor, the associate editors, and the assistant editor, as well as books for review, should be sent to KEVIEW FOR RELI~3IOUS; 612 Humboldt Building; 539 North Grand Boulevard; Saint Louis, Missouri 63io3. Questions for answering should be sent to Joseph F. Gallen, S.J.; St. Joseph's Church; 32~ Willings Alley; Philadelphia, pennsylvania ~91o6. + + + REVIEW FOR RELIGIOUS Edited with ecclesiastical approval by faculty members of the School of Divinity of Saint Louis University, the editorial offices being located at 612 Humboldt Building; 539 North Grand Boulevard; Saint Louis, Missouri 63103. Owned by the Missouri Province Edu-cational Institute. Published bimonthly and copyright ~) 1968 by REvmw FOR RELm~Ot3S at 428 East Preston Street; Baltimore, Mary-land 21202. Printed in U.S.A. Second class pos!age paid at Baltimore, Maryland. Single copies: $1.00. Subscription U.S.A. and Canada: $5.00 a year, $9.00 for two years; other countries: $5.50 a year, $10.00 for two years. Orders should indicate whether they are for new or renewal subscriptions and should be accompanied by check or money order paya-ble to Rzvmw Fort R~LIGIOUS in U.S.A. currency only. Pay no money to persons claiming to represent REVIEW FOR. RELIGIOUS. Change of address requests should include former address. Renewals and new subscriptions, wher~ accom-panied by a remittance, should be sent to REvIEw ~Oa RELIGIOtJS; P. O. BOX 671; Baltimore. Maryland 21203. Changes of address, business correspondence, and orders not accompanied by a remittanct should be sent to REvmw FOR RELIGIOUS ; 4~8 East Preston Street; Baltimore, MaD, land 21202. Manuscripts, editorial cor-respondence, and books for review should be sent to R~vmw ~oa RELIGIOUS; 612 Humboldt Building; 539 North Grand Boulevard; Saint Louis, Missouri 63103. Questions for answering should be sent to the address of the Questions and Answers editor. SEPTEMBER1968 VOLUME 27 NUMBER 5 JOSEPH FICHTNER, O.S.C. Signs Charisms, Apostolates "Signs of the times" is a phrase that has been bandied about for so long in ecclesiastical circles that it has be-come part of our Christian vocabulary and has helped to define the relationship between the Church and the world.1 It is a category which sums up and expresses the Christian interpretation.of human, history---of the events which give evidence of and vindicate God's pres-ence and activity in the world through human agency. It has been empl'oyed in papal and conciliar documents not as a pious exhortation but in order to draw attention to the Christian duty of recognizing, analyzing, and assessing the events and movements of !aistory as so ma.ny opportunities for evangelisation. The Church will have a dynamic and effective apostolate in the world only if she discerns and assesses the values to be found in the world today. The charisms or gifts with which the Spirit of Christ endows the Church enable her not only to interpret contemporary history but to meet the needs of peoples. Pope John XXIII first used the expression "signs of the times" in the apostolic constitution Humanae salutis, proclaiming the Second Vatican Council3 "Indeed," he said, "we make ours the recommendation of Jesus that one should know how to distinguish the 'signs of the times' (Mr 16:4), and we seem to see now, in the midst of so much darkness, a few indications which augur well for the fate of the Church and of humanity." After 1 See M.-D. Chenu, O.P., "Les signes des temps," Nouvelle revue thdologique, v. 87 (1965), pp. 20-$9; "The Church and the World," Documentatie Centrum Concilie, n. 52; "The Christian Value of Earthly Realities," ibid., n. 157; "A Pastoral Constitution on the Church," ibid., n. 205. = Walter M. Abbott, S.J., and Joseph Gallagher (eds.), The Docu-ments o[ Vatican H (New York: America Press, Guild Press, Associa-tion Press, 1966), p. 704. All translations of Vatican II documents throughout the article are taken from this edition. Joseph Fichtner, O~S.C., is a faculty member of the Cro-sier House of Stud-ies; 2620 East Wal-len Road, Fort Wayne, Indiana 46805. VOLUME 27, 1968 + + ÷ $oseph Fichtner, 0.$.C. listing several indications he himself had noticed, he added: "And this facilitates, no doubt, the apostolate of the Church . " The phrase was given a little more precise applica-tion by the same pontiff in his encyclical Peace on Earth,~ most significant for addressing itself not only to members of the Church but to "all men of good will." Here John XX!II observed how our age is distinguished by three characteristics: (1) the promotion o[ the working classes; (2) the entry of women into public life; and (3) the emancipation of colonized peoples. All three together signi[y that sweeping socialization whose Christian value the Church embraces with the arms of her catholicity. The recourse she may have to such signs of the times is not. a matter of opportunism but the result of understanding the spirit of the times and how the Spirit o[ Christ is at work in them. In his first encyclical Ecclesiam Suam,4 Pope Paul VI retained the term aggiornamento coined by John XXIII and associated it with the "signs of the times" as a pro-gram of action: "We want to recall it to mind as a stim-ulus to preserve the perennial vitality of the Church, her continuous awareness and ability to study the signs of the times and her constantly youthful agility in 'scrutiniz-ing it all carefully and retaining only what is good' (I Thes 5:21) always and everywhere." As John XXIII made the signs of the times the nerve center of his en-cyclical and the reason [or his optimistic outlook upon the health of the world, so did Paul VI comment upon them favorably after his return from Jerusalem on J.anuary 8, 1964, asking the faithful to understand, reflect upon, and learn how to go about deciphering them. Finally, despite some hesitation about accepting the phrase because of its biblical derivation, it was taken up into the Pastoral Constitution on the Church in the Modern World:5 "To carry out such a task [of service], the Church has always had the duty of scrutinizing the signs of the times and of interpreting-them in the light o[ the gospel . We must therefore recognize and understand the world in which we live, its expec-tations, its longings, and its often dramatic characteris-tics." The same article sketches by way of contrasts some of the contemporary characteristics: social, economic, and cultural transformation versus the uncertainty about the direction man is giving it; abundant wealth, natural resources, economic power, and the accompanying hun- 3 William J. Gibbons, S.J. (ed.), Pacera in terris (New York: Paul-ist Press, 1963), nn. 39-45. ~ The Pope Speaks, v. 10 (1965), p. 271, n. 20. The translation given above differs somewhat from the reference. 3 Article 4. ger and poverty; the unity and solidarity of the world versus the threat of total war; exchange of. ideas and diverse ideologies; a better world movement without equal zeal for spiritual betterment;'hope and anxiety. Its use in Matthew 16:4 has rendered the ph~rase sus-pect, for in the Matthean context the term "signs" refers to the miracles Jesus Worked, which is far from the meaning attached to it by either the popes or the recent council. What the latter had in mind were the events, not necessarily miraculous or extraordinary, taking place in the course of human history having spiritual and symbolic significance. The events, what-ever they may be, have both historical and theological significance. This means that beyond their immediate, brute, historical content, they have a value because they are an expression of an other reality. One can, for exam-ple, envision the forms of civilization---industrialization, socialization, urbanization, decolonialism--simply as historical trends, and then again, as the Pastoral Con-stitution on the Church in the Modern World would have us do, .as pointers to a higher reality. They open to man "spiritual vistas long unsuspected." 6 ,Perhaps their spiritual and symbolic significance can be seen more clearly when we recognize them to be signs of the times.7 The Church's duty, if her mission is to be accredited by God,. is to see that the question of God be not left out of any understanding ~ of contemporary history. The Church is dealing here with a "theophany" that has been termed "theonetics," the study of God in change. She is living in a messianic age with an escha-tological thrust--toward the end of time. Christ appeared in the one unique kairos, in the "fullness of time," and the Church is to. appear in His stead, as His' Body, con-tinuously and permanently in the process of time. Her mission in the course of human history is to interpret events and phenomena in such a way as never to let the world lose sight of its creative and redemptive reality, the transcendent and immanent in it. The Church bears witness to the economy of salvation as she sees it unfold-ing itself in history. The times furnish her with the Signs whereby she can be both sensitive to the movement of history and docile to the Holy Spirit helping her inter-pret the signs. She is in the same situation as Israel was when Yahweh was dealing with her in the concrete history Of her people. Failing this task to read the signs. of the times and to recognize their theological implica-tions, the Church abandons the world to its blind his-torical events. Chenu, "Les signes,'; p. 32. See E. Jenni, "Time," The Interpreter's Dictionary o! the Bible, ,1.4. sig,~, Chaa.~, Apostolates VOLUME ~7, ~.968 4, $oseph Fichtner, O$.C. REVIEW FOR RELIGIOU~ Part of the difficulty of such a task is that though the Church is distinct from the world, she is linked up with it. The emphasis throughout her history has fallen upon either of the two, the distinction or the link. Whenever the Church felt the distinction from the world most keenly, she shied away from her duty of evaluating earthly realities or else failed to understand them entirely or too glowly.8 It is far easier to insist upon the current categories of the temporal-spiritual, profane-sacred, civilization-evangelization, creation-redemption, history-salvation, Church-world, nature-grace, than to grasp their interrelationship. If the dualisms emerge too sharply, the Church may treat them too much apart, pass abstract judgment upon them, so that "never the twain shall meet." ¯ Granted, evangelization is not of the same order as civilization. To promote culture is not to convert to the faith. To feed the hungry and give drink to the thirsty is a duty of Christian charity, but it is not equivalent to preaching the word of God, teaching catechetics, or administering the sacraments. And yet the many earthly values are the common capital of all men, believers and unbelievers alike. Wherever they may be found, they afford the good ground for evangelical growth. Without such positive values as order, justice, right, freedom, and so forth, the work of God would have to operate in a vacuum. All human enterprise, personal as well as social, so long as it promotes the good, the true, the just, and the beautiful, is the fulfillment of that hidden potential man has in himself as an image of his Maker. Humanity itself served an incarnational purpose for the Son of God; all the good works of humanity subserve.the further goal of evangelization. All such works and the values attaching to them, because they signal the gradual development of man, his humanisation, are to be considered the prevenient signs and predispositions for the diffusion of the gospel. Man, confronted by the immense resources of nature, including his own almost infinite capacities, becomes more human through the advance of science, technology, culture, and socialization. At the same time he is left open to spiritual values, his personal and social life as it develops presents positive dispositions for the incar-nation of. divine life. For example, the closer he comes to fulfilling his aspiration for peace, the more likely he is to receive "a peace the world cannot give." 9 Major improve- 8 S~e Heinrich Tenhumberg, "The Role of Church Authority in Investigating the Signs of the Times," Third Session Council Speeches of Vatican H, ed. William K. Leahy and Anthony T. Massimini (New York: Paulist Press, 1966), pp. 172-3. See also Paul Gouyon, "Reading the.Signs of the Times," ibid., pp. 154-7. 8 Jn 14:27. ments upon mass communications help the Christian to spread the message of the gospel universally. So in every instance where he is an agent of truly human progress he renders himself fit for or subject to .grace. What scholastic theology calls the "obediential potency" of men is nothing else than man radically-good but now more than ever open and receptive to grace because of .the development of his capacities.10 Popes John and Paul and the Vatican Council have called our attention to the social dimensions of this obediential.potency. A fair illustration and parallel to our times can be taken from early Christianity when the fathers of the Church observed a major and universal phenomenon of their own stage of human evolution, the civilization of the Roman Empire. The socialization in .our day is comparable to the" civilization in theirs. They were ready to describe the civilization of the Roman Empire as an evangelical preparation. The cultural value of language alone, such as the Greek and the Latin, helped them to proclaim the gospel far and wide, though they could have been tradition-bound by the language of their Founder. The worldwide extension of social and political values, moreover, provided them the good ma-terial for the construction of the kingdom of God. They found the Roman Empire to be a meeting, place for Christianity; its cobblestones were the stepping-stones for "the feet of one who brings good news." 11. Earthly realities, however,, do not always and every-where contain pure or undiluted values; their values oftentimes are ambiguous, contaminated by error or sin. The fathers of the Church realized this fact too, but it did not prevent them from sifting the important values from an admixture of good and evil. In the grandeur of nature, though occasionally troubled in land, sky, and sea, they discovered the vestigia Dei, and in the grandeur of a tainted human nature an imago Dei. Mined ore has its measure of slag before its refinement in a smelting furnace. The same is true of labor organization, agrarian reform, social charity, and so forth. The ultimate per-spective of human projects, faulty as they may be in their hesitant beginnings, may go far beyond their im-mediate realization. This is why it is so ne.cessary to read the signs of the times correctly and not let ourselves be confused over realities.which onesidely seem to be stumbling blocks or idols for mankind. In rendering service to the world we cannot help but expose our own weaknesses and limitations. This exposure is unavoidable, and the a0St. Thomas Aquinas, De virtutibus incommuni, a.10, ad 13; 1-2, ci.ll3, a.10. n Is 52:7. Signs~ Chhrisms, Apostolates VOLUME 27~ 1968 77i Church herself admits it in her Pastoral Constitution On the Church in the Modern World: ". the mission of the Church will show its religious, and by that very fact its supremely human character." x2 There will certainly be risks to assume while drawing the good out of all possible resources for building the kingdom of God. But the risks will be diminished to the extent that we recognize and receive the values of the world in the light of the gospel and instinct with faith" and charity. Faith fed by an intensive prayer life will. have to be on the alert to follow God's designs in .the progress of nations. If the risk is great on the one hand, there is no less risk, for lack of faith and discernment, in failing to see the divine interventions in the events of today. Vatican CounCil II was mindful of this risk when it exemplified a discernment of the signs of the times by way of con-trasts, Such a discernment inspired by the Holy Spirit reveals the Spirit working within the signs: "The whole creation is eagerly waiting for God to reveal his sons." in Re.ligious institutes cannot rest content with the papal and conciliar exhortation to discern the signs of the times, nor are they generally qualified to do so without the charisms or gifts of the Holy Spirit. What the Church i~s able to analyze and assess universally, the various religious groups should do locally and periodically, always ready to seek out new solutions for new problems, How else is adaptation to circumstances possible? They might ask themselves questions such as these: What are ¯ the needs of the local community, civic and religious? Do signs of the times show themselves locally, pointing the way for a religious community to promote and take action? Housing projects, job opportunities, educational facilities, cultural programs, ecumenical activities, social charities, and a host of other situations--do they not cry out for that cooperation without which God will not intervene in human events excepting miraculously? As fast as science and technology are moving ahead into the future, can the religious apostolate afford not to re-examine itself periodically? One of the characteristics of the new-style religious life would seem to be presence in an ever changing society. Members are determined to share in the suffering, sacrifice, and conflict affecting society today. ,~÷ But is there not a subtle temptation in thinking'one ,.4. .has to leave his milieu behind in order t.o go "where the ¯÷ action is" ? The local apostolate, along with the charisms befitting it, may well be the first obligation of a religious group. Heinrich Tenhumberg, Auxiliary Bishop of Mfinster, Joseph Fichtner, 0.$.C. REVIEW FOR RELIGIOUS !772 Article 11. Rom 8:19. Germany, in a speech to the Council Fathers on October 26, 1964, commenting upon the schema of the Pastoral Constitution on the Church in the Modern World, raised the question why in her past the Church too rarely acknowledged the free action of her members who aptly recognized the signs of the times. Fie laid down what he thought were the four conditions for rightly investigating and interpreting the signs of the times, one of which was that "room must be given to a new evaluation of the charisms and gifts of the Holy Spirit among the People of God." 14 Without aspiring to such a mature and correct understanding of the signs of the times, he felt the Church would not be able to "fulfill the will.of God in time." The question Bishop Tenhum-berg raises does not touch upon the fidelity of God to His Church in the modern world, as if He might forsake her in an hour of need; he simply asks whether the Church always utilizes the prophetic gifts which keep her au courant. Of course, the same question can be directed to religious institutes as belonging to the char-ismatic character of the people of God. "Charism" is the near transliteration of a Greek term typically Pauline. It is to be found in the Pauline Epistles and once in the First Epistle of Peter. The latter more or less encapsulates the Pauline idea of a charism: "Each of you has received a special grace, so, like good stewards responsible for all these different graces of God, put yourselves at the service of others." 15 Paul, too, regards the charisms as given to members of the Christian com-munity in trust for the common good of that community. The four lists of charisms he provides indicate how diversified these gifts are, yet none of the lists nor all of them together are ~xhaustive.16 In this enumeration there is no hint of Paul prognosticating about the future needs of the Church and how his lists of charisms are sufficient for them. To envisage the function of each charism for the bene-fit of the whole community, Paul ~onjures up the image of the human body with all of its members contributing to its welfare.~7 The multiplicity of the charisms, rather than manifesting conflict with one another within the totality of the body or tearing it apart, tend toward its 14 Tenhumberg, "The Role," p. 174. The first, second, and fourth conditions are: a renewed theology of the Holy Spirit and of His life and activity within the Church; a renewal of biblical and patris-tic theology; a new style of Church authority and a new method for it to act, watch, and judge. ~ 1 Pt 4:10. See a preconciliar explanation of the charismatic element in the Church by Karl Rahner, The Dynamic Element in the Church (New York: Herder and Herder, 1964), pp. 42-83. an I Cor 12:8-10, 28-30; Rom 12:6-8; Eph 4:11. a~ See Rom 12:4-6. + + + Signs, ~harisms, Apostolates VOLUME 27, 1968 77~ ÷ ÷ ÷ Joseph Fichtner, O.S.C. REVIEW FOR RELIGIOUS unity. In this connection it is interesting to compare the Pauline idea of this totalizing effect of the charisms with the opinion expressed by St. Hippolytus of Rome in his introduction to the Apostolic Tradition, a third-century document. He asserts that "all charisms which from the beginning God gave to man in accordance with his will, restore to man the image which was lost." The early Church thought of the apostolate as the first of the spiritual gifts entrusted to her by Christ. It was itself a charism. Scripture, particularly the Pauline writings, witness to the fact that the Twelve did not lay exclusive claim to the title of "apostle." Probably because they felt the need of the assistance of others, they invested the rest with some of their own power and called them "apostles." The apostolate and the prophetic spirit was, for Paul, the foundation of the Church, with Christ as its cornerstone,is The apostolate was a spiritual gift he treasured much, and that is why he so frequently re-ferred to it. A closer investigation into the charisms of the early Church and their meaning and use bears out the fact that the early Church was so convinced o~ her charismatic role under the influence and guidance of the Holy Spirit that it has led some scholars, peering back into that time, to be-lieve the Church to have been entirely charismatic and not at all hierarchical and institutional. Relating the role of the Holy Spirit to the mystery of the Church, the Dog-matic Constitution on the Church takes issue with such a stand, stating: "He [the Holy Spirit] furnishes and directs her [the Church] with various gifts, both hierar-chical and charismatic, and adorns her with the fruits of His grace (cf. £ph 4:11-12; 1 Cor 12:4; Gal 5:22)." 19 Part and parcel of her charismatic structure is the re-ligious life, and only within this structure does it find its authentic ecclesial dimension. Paul esteemed the apostolate to be a gift and a de-manding task at one and the same time. It would be foolish of us to think the early Christians were buoyed up by a host of fancy, even magical, spiritual gifts and had to exert no effort of their own. We do them an in-justice in imagining their life was surrounded with the miraculous. A good glance at some of their charisms will tell how much need there was for personal and communal effort. Works of mercy--nursing, almsgiving, adminis-tration, fraternal help of every kind--cost effort on their part. So did the preaching, teaching, and discernment of spirits. All such charisms had to be met halfway by men of good will .and selflessness; they demanded that same See Eph 2:20. Article 4. human enterprise and exertion which we ~aw had to be put into a periodic reappraisal of thh signs of the times. For some time before Vatican II theology was reluc-tant to teach that charisms belong to the contemporary Church. Theology was wont to confine the charisms to the primitive Church and to limit them characteristically to the miraculous or extraordinar~y. Vatican II changed all that theological opinion. Little and great charisms have existed throughout the history of the Church. As we read in the Dogmatic Constitution on the Church, the Holy Spirit "distributes special graces among the faith-ful of every rank . These charismatic gifts, whether they be the most outstanding or the more ,simple and widely diffused, are to be received with thanksgiving and consolation, for they are exceedingly suitable and useful for the needs of the Church." 20 There seems to be no reason then to hold the early Church to have been more richly endowed with charisms than the Church today. In the Church then as now charisms are spiritual gifts bestowed freely especially for the benefit of others. Wherever one discovers the incon-spicuous service of the Church, no matter how small the ecclesial operation, there, in such gifts, one will likely detect some sort of divine intervention. However slight a manifestation of loving service, it may conceal a gift of the Spirit of Christ. Charisms may be found together wherever one sees the accumulated effect of a sign. Charismatic gifts are not only rare and extraordinary but common and ordinary. Anyone who is willing to expend himself for Christ in heroic fidelity to common-place, everyday things is gifted with a charism. Under the common thing the hidden grace. The gifts of the Holy Spirit are deeper, more hidden and widespread or pervasive than we know. Who is to set limits upon His gifts in our life? Are we too inclined to look for gifts only in the spectacular, the colossal, the newsworthy, like finding a solution to wars, social problems, ecclesias-tical enigmas? Many are the gifts wrapped in the small packages of fidelity to duty, kindness, sincerity, purity, courage, truthfulness, trust, love. At this point it may be time to push Bishop Tenhumberg's argument one notch further by asking if there is any possibility at all of interpreting the signs of the times unless charisms are better employed? How closely interconnected, in fact, intermingled are charisms with the signs of the times? Do we have to speak of them as "values" to observe how they overlap? St. Paul never meant to enumerate all the Charisms of Article 12. ÷ ÷ ÷ Signs, Chazisms~ Apostolates VOLUME 27, 1968 + + ÷ .loseph Fichtner, O .S.C. REVIEW FOR RELIGIOUS the Spirit at work in his day, possibly because he did not discern them all; nor is it possible for us to list them in our own day, excepting to mention, as he did, that there are varieties of gifts, all of which are intended for the good of the Church. Gifts of nature, talent, skill, com-petence, which often are the substratum of grace and are not easily told apart from it, are not to be hoarded or stingily communicated. Were it possible to paraphrase I Corinthians 12, we would have to say that the variety of gifts discloses itself somewhat differently now than in early Christianity. Perhaps this variety shows up in in-telligence or scholarship or scientific research, social reforms, artistic talent, catechetical skill, pediatrics, ger-ontology, the schooling of exceptional children, liturgical zeal, youth programming, public relations, apostolic en-deavor, mystical bent, and so forth. Gifts of all kinds, specializations, are useful and necessary in the Church in the modern world and are not to be bottled up or hidden. Nor will they function properly if restricted to a loner or a clique. They will dictate the abandoning of some apos-tolates and the assuming of others. Various gifts of the Spirit should enable Christians to work together harmoniously in the Church, for though the gifts are many they are one in the Spirit. In the Decree on the Apostolate of ~he Laity the unity of the apostolate is accentuated, however variously it may ex-press itself: "From the reception of these charisms or gifts, including those which are less dramatic, there arise for each believer the right and duty to use them in the Church and in the world for the good of mankind and for the upbuilding of the Church." ~ Since no one can claim all the gifts, their very diversity can do service in many apostolates and fit together into a fine pattern of apostolic activity. St. Paul wrote about this unity because he himself was faced with the Corinthian quarreling over gifts as though they were held in contention or competition: "There is a variety of gifts but always the same Spirit, there are all sorts of service to be done, but always to the same Lord; working in all sorts of different ways in different people, it is the same God who is work-ing in all of them." ~z Whereas Paul had in mind char-isms belonging to individuals, it seems more appropriate to think that nowadays the charisms are diffused among groups of men and women who are willing to pool their capabilities and resort to consultation and con-certed action. The Spirit confers communal charisms as well as individual. Charity, according to Paul, is their unifying factor, and therefore he stresses the fact that charity outranks ~XArticle 3. =1Cor 12:4-6. them all. Charity motivates the recipients of the gifts to employ them for the common good of mankind. Charity too allows us who live in a community to appreciate the variety of gifts distributed among the members, so that each person can be different because of them even when we do not comprehend why he is so gifted or how he is so effective with his gifts. We must leaim to be patient, tolerant, and sensitive to one another, letting another employ his gift(s) as he sees fit as long as he is not misguided in his zeal and effort (how can a so-called charism square with" an otherwise questionable life?).- The function of gifts cannot be legislated in complete detail, nor can everybody in every circumstance abide by such detail. Practical matters simply cannot be regula.ted unanimously. But it may take charismatic courage to say "No" to a trend or policy or spirit which proves to be wrong and damaging to the Church. Egotism sometimes blinds us to the divine goodness in the many splendid achievements, the human values, round about us. Humility, contrariwise, prompts us to behold the marvels of God's grace. Charismatic goodness is to 'be found abundantly in the Church' and society if we would only peel from our eyes the scales of our selfish-ness. We are tempted to look only for the things which suit our fancy. ,At times, no doubt, the charismatic may frighten us or appear threatening because it is novel and catches us by surprise. It may be shocking, and yet upon investigation it may reveal a hidden or unknown contlnmty with something of the past. Liturgical change, for example, may startle today but in itself be a revival of a tradition dating back to the early Church. Charismatic leaders ¯ may be criticized for their bumptiousness or impetuosity; -they may obe called untraditional or subversive; their spirit may be attributed to a yen for change. They and their gifts may meet with contradiction, apathy, sloth, delay, distrust, because not all others discern their true value or the Spirit introducing them into the Church and society. Difficult as it is to sense the Spirit at work among charismatic leaders, it is no less difficult for the charis-matic leaders themselves to be sure of their own inspira-tions and enthusiasms. The uncertainty within themselves is compounded by the opposition they inevitably meet from without. Men like Gandhi, John XXIII, and Martin Luther King, Jr. exemplify the point at hand. We who are caught up .in the crosscurrents sweeping through the Church at the present time easily recognize the signs of opposition. They are like the churning waters left behind by a ship, the wake of its effort to plow ahead through the rampaging sea. + + Signs, Charinm, Apostolates ~OI.UME 27, 1968 777 + ÷ ÷ ]o, seph Fichtner, . . 0.$.~,. REVIEW FOR RELIGIOUS 7.78 This opposition is mild in comparison with the re-jection the true apostle has to contend with while follow-ing Christ in the modern world: rejection by his enemies because what he upholds or promotes is hostile to them, and rejection by his own who fail to understand him or his gift(s). The cost of apostleship and discipleship is sul~ering-- the sacrifice of earthly ties, possessions, life itself. What uncompromising zeal is necessary for the disciple as he assumes the cost of his charism. Christ expected His followers to encounter suffering, at least the pain of carrying out the burden or responsibility of a charism.23 It is painful to realize charismatic limitations, painful to be humbled by other charismatic activities which clash with ours. Not all gifts are operative in the Church at the same time, so they will have to bide their time. The important thing to remember is that the charisms meant for the apostolate place their recipients in the service of Christ who was a suffering Servant for His people. Since Vatican Council II considered the religious way of life to be charismatic and apostolic, it is only to be expected that this life should suffer through its current attempts at self-renewal. The charism of the religious founder was the germ of "the original inspiration of a given community," 24 which has to undergo the pain of growth. The retention or modification of that charism which he injected in his community can cause suffering especially when the personal charisms of members are in conflict with it. The Spirit communicates a "spirit" determinative of "the particular character of each com-munity," which can put the community at odds with ecclesiastical authority and occasion large-scale dissatis-faction. 25 Thus the vital principle of a religious com-munity can be at one and the same time the source of its sanctity and the cause for the purification of its orig-inal gift. The most agonizing encounters with ecclesias-tical authority occur in the field of the apostolate, a fact confirmed by contemporary examples. Yet Vatican II admitted it was "by divine plan that a wonderful variety of religious communities' grew up" with "the diversity of their spiritual endowments." 2n This is an admission that the Spirit of Christ communi-cates directly and not necessarily or always through "~ See Lk 14:25-35. ~ Decree on the Appropriate Renewal of the Religious Lile, Article 2. See M. Olphe-Galliard, s.J., "Le charisme des [ondateurs religieux," Vie consacrge, v. 39 (1967), pp. 338-52. ~Decree on the Bishops' Pastoral O0~ce in the Church, Article 35.2." 28Decree on the Appropriate Renewal oI the Religious Lile, Ar-ticle 1. hierarchical channels. By their initiative and creativity, in accordance with their special gifts, religious com-munities initiate movements which only later may be taken up by authority. Their apostolates lie at the fron-tiers of the Church, supported by the gifts, small and great, of the Holy Spirit. The ultimate norm of the religious life is "a following of Christ as proposed by the gospel." z7 The gospel pic-tures Jesus addressing himself to the J.ews who were accusing Him of blasphemy, speaking of Himself as "someone the Father consecrated and sent into the world." 28 Christ in turn called others to this same ~onsecration and same mission, that is, ap6stolate. They had to give up all things to follow Him. Religious have appropriated to themselves the word spoken by Peter the Apostle: "We have left everything and fol-lowed you." 29 Christ called fishermen and a tax collector to the apostolate: "Follow me.''30 This call to obedience meant adherence to the Person of Jesus Christ and fellowship with Him. Before Christ entrusted any offices to His followers, He established a community among them with Himself at the center; He shaped them into a Christocentric community. The early apostolic life was not motivated by some form of hero worship but by obedience to the Son of God. The Decree on the Appropriate Renewal of the Re-ligious Life devotes an entire article to a discussion of the apostolate.31 After explaining in Article 5 that the life of religious is "an act of special consecration [to Christ] which is deeply rooted in their baptismal con-secration and which provides an ampler manifestation of it," the decree shows how its basic unity is diversified in two vocations, corttemplative and apostolic. The special consecration can be lived in two ways because of its twofold orientation. Vatican Council II was look-ing at the religious life phenomenologically: it saw therein two principal orientations, one toward con-templation, the other toward the apostolate. The religious apostolate then must stem from the special consecration to Christ; it is an apostolic con-secration. The religious apostolate is not simply a gesture, a sort of outward and incidental manifestation of the love consecrated men and women have for Christ. It is ~ Ibid., Article 2. 's Jn 10:36. =~ Mt 19:27. ~ Mk 2:14. ~ Article 8. See £. Pin, S.J., "Les instituts religieux apostoliques et le changement so¢io-culturel," Nouvelle revue thdologique, v. 87 (1965), pp. 395-411. ÷ ÷ ÷ Signs, ~Tharisms, Apostolates VOLU~E ~7; i~3 779 ÷ Joseph Fich0t~n.e(~r,. REV[EW FOR RELIGIOUS rather a concrete and unmistakable love expressed in a life '!committed to apostolic works." 32 In Article 8 we read about the "various aspects of the apostolate," how religious groups make diversified con-tributions to the common good of the Church. These contributions, the decree points out, derive from the varieties of gifts given to the groups by the Holy Spirit. The varieties of gifts determine to a large extent, though not fully, the specific apostolic orientation a religious group takes--teaching, nursing, social work, home and foreign missions, and so forth. Although the decree does not refer to it explicitly, it implicitly wants religious to consider the interrelationship of signs of the times, charisms, and apostolates: "Communitie.~ should promote among their members a suitable awareness of contem-porary human conditions and of th~ needs of the Church. For if their members can combine the burn-ing zeal of an apostle with wise judgments, made in the light of faith, concerning the circumstances of the modern world, they will be able to come to the aid of men more elfectively."3a Such studies as psychology, sociology, anthropology, economics, political science, can be the humanistic basis for the charisms to be more under-standing of and productive in the world. In a second paragraph within Article 8 the council links closely two spirits that should dominate each other in the religious life, the religious and the apostolic. Without such interlinking the religious life would suffer and die. The key statement to this effect is the following: "Flence the entire religious life of the rdembers of these communities should be penetrated by an apostolic spirit, as their entire apostolic activity should be ani-mated by a religious spirit." Here we touch upon a delicate point of the spiritual renewal asked "for by Vatican II--the possibility of failure to renew a spirit while changes are made "on behalf of contemporary needs." "Indeed such an interior renewal must always be accorded the leading role even in the promotion of exterior works." a4 Of course it is impossible to set any determinate, calculable hours apart for each, prayer and apostolate, but it is essential to realize that the two go hand in hand. In order to avoid the idea that perhaps apostolic works will lead to the danger of activism, to a self-seeking in the apostolate, to immoderate desire for action, to some sentimental involvement in the lives of others, the council asserted that "apostolic activity should ~ See the first reference in footnote $1. ~ Article 2. ~ Decre~ on th~ ,4ppropriate Renewal o/th~ Religious Life, Arti-cle 2. result from intimate union with" Christ.35 It would not have a Christlike spirit and would be torn from an apos-tolic witness, a body of Christianity without a Heart. The prayer itself of religious should be apostolic. Normally they will make their own the petition in Christ's prayer: "Thy kingdom come"--all the spiritual interests confided to the community. Daily community prayer will embrace all the persons who are in the in-timate care of the community: personnel, students, patients, fellow religious, all who depend upon the community for their spiritual sustenance. Instead of being an evasion of apostolic duty, wrongly inspired by the idea that the community can cure every evil and help everyone with prayer alone, its apostolic prayer will be a catharsis and a strength .for apostolic activity. Its members will not dilute their prayer life with all the worry and anxiety they experience throughout their daily apostolate. Apostolic prayer will be for them a humble and confident conversation with Christ who may find them worthy of His own fiery love for the people His Father committed to Him to redeem. A community closely bound together is prone to feel that its communitarian link conditions its form of presence and activity in the world. Community life of itself is not necessarily opposed to an effective presence and activity in the world. But its members obligate them-selves to live this tension between presence in the world and presence in a community till the' eschatological day when the Church and world will be entirely one. No matter how well they try to regulate their life, there will inevitably be some tension between religious observance and apostolic works, between the structural and the ~harismatic. It would be an easy solution to turn the time for observances into an apostolically disordered life. The regular community observance has apostolic meaning and purpose. Perhaps this tension can be eased by better budgeting and managing of time and service. Better management will help to avoid the two extremes of a rigid formalism on the one hand and a disordered and frantic life on the other. The former is harmful to the apostolate, the latter arouses anxiety or qualms of conscience. All the discussion nowadays against structure and the institutional Church can do harm to what is good and useful of structure and the institutional Church. Some sort of structure and a prudently regulated observance is an indispensable aid to religious life and to the apostolate. To take an example from family life--how much family life remains if members come and go as they Ibid., Article 8. 4- 4- 4- Signs, Charisms, Apostolates VOLUME 27, 1968 781 ÷ ÷ ÷ $oseph Fichtner, O.S.C. REVIEW FOR RELIGIOUS please without any recourse to a schedule for meals, sleep, work, recreation, and especially to a steady inter-communication? The same holds true for religious life:. a moderate observance is a precious boon to it. On the other hand, observance for its own sake is obnoxious. It is bound to incite a harmful restlessness, to sap energy, paralyze effort, or invite either pharisaical regu-larity or intentional neglect. Vatican II was rather in-sistent that this point of observance be looked into and brought up to date. The decree carefully notes that a high-spirited and level-headed apostolate will itself nurture rather than ruin the love for God and neighbor. The question is, how will it nurture this love? First of all, by putting to rest that old fear of an apostolate, genuine and sincere, somehow detracting from the love of God. The council will go down in history, particularly for its Pastoral Constitution on the Church in the Modern World, in seeing signs of the times which hold promise of much good for the human community. While speaking of the religious apostolate, it remarks about this same good as the field for religious to harvest. The religious apos-tolate, therefore, will nurture love in two ways: first by peace, secondly by stimulus. Peace will accrue from it because the religious will learn that his effort and fatigue are the sincere and au-thentic expression of his love for God. There is much comfort in knowing, deep down in his heart, that he is doing the will of God in the apostolic task assigned to him and for which his charism suits him. Obedience to an assignment with all the hardship and suffering it entails, is a participation in the obedience of Christ. Christ felt real contentment in the fulfillment of His duty toward His Father. "My food is to do the will of the one who sent me, and to complete his work." 86 At the same time the apostolic religious will be stim-ulated to love more, for the apostolate will impress him with need for fidelity to prayer and to a rule of life. He will recognize at once that any lack of zeal on his part amounts to a lack of love, zeal being the fruit of love. Insufficient love springs from an insufficient union with God. Christ turned to prayer in the midst of a busy apostolate and denied Himself sleep in order to pray often and for long spells. Such prayer instilled in His heart a greater love for souls, greater patience, and more courage. This has been an endeavor to weave together the complementary aspects of the signs of the times, charisms, and apostolates especially as they pertain to religious ~ Jn 4:34. institutes. Religious institutes too, inasmuch as they have a charismatic role in the Church and society, have to examine the signs of the times locally and periodically in order to see what apostolates are open~to them and whether they have the charisms most suited to contem-porary needs. All three--signs of the times, charisms, and apostolates--mesh into a single program of life and work under the guidance o[ the Holy Spirit and in the light o[ faith and charity. Signs, Charisrns, Apostolates VOLUME 27, 1968 KEVIN F. O'SHEA, C.Ss.R. The "Security Void" + ÷ Kevin F. O'Shea, C.Ss.P., writes from St. Mary's Monas-tery; Wendouree; Ballarat, Victoria; Australia. REVIEW FOR RELIGIOUS Two years ago Dan Herr wrote in The Critic of a "piety void": the deep loss felt by many people since older "devotions" have been downgraded and have lost their force, and the new "liturgy" is not yet meaning-fully established. The "piety void" is only one aspect of the "security void": a deep unhappiness experienced by many, since older "securities" have been challenged and nothing seems to have replaced them. This diagnosis contends that two basic types of security are in conflict: a security of absolute norms, and a security of committed love. It analyses them only in the area of external au-thority and obedience (though it might well take in areas of moral conscience, faith and doctrine, and voca-tional role and ideal). Each of the two "approaches" to security to be out-lined here could claim (and has claimed) roots in St. Thomas. It is necessary to distinguish between theory, translation of theory into experience, translation of experience into inspirational-motif, translation ol in-spirational- moti[ into formula, translation o[ [ormula into a workable living pattern. Any fully developed "ap-proach" to a profoundly human value (like security) includes all five: theory, experience, inspirational-motif, formula, and workable living pattern. Of the two ap-proaches to security to be developed here, the first (the "older") can be considered initially as "fully developed" in this sense; the second ("the modern") cannot. Both could agree at root in the theory of St. Thomas; each then develops a different experience and inspirational-motif; the "older" possesses its clear formulas and work-able living patterns, which are now challenged by the "modern"; the "modern" is not yet equipped with these elements, and for that reason is deprecated by the "older." Here lies the problem of analysis: here lies finally the root of the "security void" itself. A security of absolute norms is the fruit of a rational-ized approach to society. Accepting the common aim and the need for organized action to attain it, the members of a society accept also a human authority that will give it firmness, sureness, stability, and "security" in the I'face of conflicting human attitudes within it. When a superior, in whom such authority is vested, make~ an authoritative precept, it becomes normative for the society; only in obedience to that norm can that society continue with security. Security is conceived as unified and efficiently ordered action; it stems from "managerial authority." When the subjects obey, they conform their practical thought and action to the authoritative precept given them, out of respect for authority and out of love for the well-ordered existence of the society and its "security." Their obedience is intelligent, even rational: it is logical for them to obey, given their commitment to such values. When in fact their theoretical assessment of a situation differs from the dictate of authority, they will then sacrifice the advantage they believe they might bring to the common interest, to the greater good of the unchallenged reign of authority and for the noble end it serves, the societyrs "security." This is no infantile submission to the "will" of a master: it is the manly conformity of those who see greater value in their sacrifice than in their independent achievement. Their con-science is honored; and they have the personal, ful-fillment of being rightly ordered to the values they cherish, rather than the less esteemed fulfillment of mastery through their own pattern of action. At .times, recourse might duly be had to higher authority; but always in the interests of greater security for the com-mon interest. This is the theory; it has been lived in a way that subtly turns authority into something more absolute. It is assumed in'practice that the order ~1: the society to its common aim, its security, and its continued existence, depend on absolute obedience to its authority at all times. Despite the theory (which would allow for the balance of one human law with another, and with natural and divine law, andfor the use of epikeia as a x;irtue and not simply as a legal loophole), visible division from authority in any matter commanded is considered a supreme, scandal and an absolute evil. We suspect here a practical transition from general policies (the principle of respect for authority) to particu-lar details (the absoluteness of this dictate, in which the whole meaning of authority is seen to be at stake); we sus.pe~t a practical equation of what is authorized for the society with what is objectively good (and best) for the society--of the practical .and the theoretical advantages of the society; we suspect even that authority is almost conceived as the end of the society itself. In this way the basic theory has been hardened through experience towards a stress on absolute loyalty to authority at all VOLUME 27, 1768 785 + ÷ ÷ Kevin O'Shea, C.Ss.R. REVIEW FOR RELIGIOUS costs, as the~ esprit de corps and inspirational-motif of society. The formulas of the basic theory are read in this sense, and the workable living patterns enshrine it. In practice, then, it is in the "absolute norms" of authority that man finds his security in society. For an "older" generation such unchallenged security alone was possible. This same approach underlies even a mystical view of the Church as the Body of Christ growing to its fullness under the guidance of the Spirit. It is through the charisms that the Spirit rules the Church; and to some He gives the charism of discerning the direction that might be taken with profit; to others He gives the charism of expressing .this conviction publicly; while to the apostolic hierarchy alone He gives the charism of placing God's definitive seal of approval on any plan. It . is through the hierarchy alone that salvation history can finally and authoritatively be formed: the word of the hierarchy is the word of the Lord. When a member of the Church obeys the hierarchy, he acts out of deep reverence for their office and for the divine plan of history in the Church. He thinks it is better for Christ to be revered in His bishops than for Christ to be helped by independent action but dishonored by an apparent. schism between His members. He gives up .what he hitherto thought to be the desire of the Spirit, for the word of the hierarchy, which He authentically knows to be the desire of the Spirit. This is the theory, and it is not hard to see how it has absolutized the practice of obedience in the church. An episcopal command has been regarded as a divinely absolute norm in which alone the Church can continue to live and grow in Christ. The apostolic placer is the will of God and is the security of the Church. It is the absolute norm for a Christian who wants to live in the Church and follow God's plan. We suspect here the root of the attitude of simple acceptance in many of the faithful who look on all pronouncements of ecclesiastical authority as though they were of the same univocal value; we suspect here a certain voluntarism by which God's ideal plan for man in the Church is identified with God's here and now (permissive?) will expressed through the hierarchy. A mystique of security in the Church stems from this lived attitude. A personal approach to community today suggests another kind of security--the "security of committed love." It begins with the axiom that man is a living and loving person. He is called to give himself to others in generosity, sacrifice, and service. In this "self-spending" he really "becomes" a person. There is in man, then, a native instinct (blunted by sin but given new point by grace) to yield, in love, to others whom he serves. It could be called "obedience," but it is not what is strictly and technically described as social obedience. It is prior to the existence or recognition of any social au-thority; it is an intrinsic function of love. It goes far beyond the demands of organization; it is directed to persons not to abstract values. Man then has to live his life in situations in which he experiences in his conscience the call to such love and serf-giving to others. In this call he hears the voice o[ love itself, which is God. In it he recognises the eter-nal law of absolute Love. He needs these situations if he is going to meet this Love and experience its challenge; they channel it to him as "mediations" of Love. He also needs these situations if he is going to respond to this Love and live up to its demands; they are the ambient, the milieu in which he can grow in it. Such human situations, which are. not of man's mak-ing, are in no way opposed to man's love. His love acts, not against them, but within them. As human, his love needs them. The basic situation thus needed is the situation of "personal community." We do not refer, to a community of traditions and practices, or to a community of meth~ ods and pooled skills, but to a community of persons who strive to live together in a. truly personal and serf-giving way. They are a "people" together, a true "comm.unity," blending together their instinctive desire for love and self-giving. Within such a community, the call to Love is heard and answered; the community is the "mediation" and the "milieu" of the eternal law of Love. Love can find itself only within such a community; it is an intrinsically demanded "structure" of love, a permanent, developed, and basic situation of human love. Considerably more is meant here, of course, than what is usually read into the concept of a society, effi-ciently organized to achieve a common aim. In com-munity, persons experience a sense of belon~,tng, of. "being together," of loving together. The integration_ of person with person, of personal attitude and ideal with personal attitude and ideal, as they yield to one another and serve one another and together serve others, is the basic horizon needed for all human life. In this sense, community "serves" man. Within such a community, there is need for celebra-tioh; such real love and togetherness need to be sym-bohzed and feted. Within such a community, there is also need for leadership; such love needs to be given open and significant expression within the community Security Void VOLUME 27, 1968 Kevin O'Shea~ REVIEW FOR RELI~IOUS 788 and radiated outward to those who do not yet know it. Such celebrations and leading-actions are the high-points of community life. Without them, the community does not live, symbolically, in the hearts of the persons who form it, and does not supply them with action-situa-tions for ever deeper personal love. The community needs such events, and therefore it needs within it an oOice responsible for assuring their presence. Those who bear this office are rightly considered to have special eminence in the community, and to them the open-ness of all members of the community is especially directed. Those who bear this office are in a real sense the pivots and sttpports of the community-structure which serves personal love. The acceptance, the reverence, and the "obedience" they are given is fundamental to the commitment of community love and transcends the limits of merely social obedience. At the same time, the office we describe is not strictly social authority but something prior to it. If in fact in a given community there is also social authority (and thus also social obedience), they/viii be fully integrated, on their lower level, into these primary values. Authority must spring spontaneously from the community-office of celebration and leadership; obedience must spring spon-taneously from integration into community, availability to the action of the community, and reverent acceptance of those who hold office in the community. It is clear that when in fact such true social obedience is called for, it will possess a unique a~ective tone. It wi!l be an obedience within community love. It will simply pinpoint the readiness to yield which is there in the community prior to any legal precept. It is more a privilege than a duty. There are two major differences between this and the pattern of obedience previously described in the "older" approach. First, it claims the right to integrate the external com-mand into the claims of Love as heeded in conscience and lived in the community. The subject to whom the external authority speaks "hears" the dictate externally and then asks himself what it "means,' to him in his community-conscience, as a moral imperative of Love. He does not assume, absolutely and universally, that every external command will always automatically mean such a demand of Love. He does not assume, absolutely and universally, that always and in every ~case personal sacrifice must be made to the higher role of this authority. He will not grant, beforehand, that' authority is the main thing in a given situation but will assess the claims of authority in relation to the claims Of community love itself. He will'make this assessment as a person, in open-ness with the persons who form his community and hold office and authority in it. He will grant that normally and in many cases authority-claim (legal imperative) will mean community-claim and love-claim (moral imperative): but he will not a priori equate the two. He will grant that he must make his decision in this matter in deep responsibility of conscience, but he will think that such responsibility is part of his duty in a community of this kind. This first point is claiming more than the simple state-ment that a true imperative (legal and therefore moral) can objectively be in point but may or may not be grasped subjectively by a given person in invincible ignorance because of environmental circumstances. It is an expres-sion o[ an attitude to obedience that springs from the inspiration of the community-love theme. In theory it may not be saying more than is said in classic positions concerning epikeia and the balance of laws and incon-veniences, but it is said in the spirit of an experience different from the experience that has concretely inter-preted and presented the classic positions. Whatever our final judgment of it, a new point of view is expressed here. Secondly, by way of balance, in this obedience there is always a willingness to go beyond legal demands and to go beyond the hard and fast line of what is obligatory by authority. It does not like to stop at what must be done; it looks for what can be done. The final criterion of action is not what legal authority says (or does not say); it is what the situation really demands of the conscience of those involved. The external authority and its statement are respected as part of the total situa-tion in which the imperative of conscience is seen and in which it must act, but it is recognized that the total situation may at times and even often require more than the external authority has stated. Such obedience must be recognized as magnanimous: it acts, not in con-straint, but in love. Once again, it is an expression of attitude that is in point here, flowing from the basic inspiration of the meaning of community. In theory, it is saying no more than the classic position says of the primacy of charity over social obedience, the unity of all the virtues in love, and the rights of personal conscience. But it is expressed in a new enthusiasm arising from a new ex-perience. It is a different point of view from the "old." In the concrete the obedience morally recognized by the person in a given situation will be a determination of the tension between the first and second point: be-tween the right of personal integration into his respon-sible community love, and the duty of personal tran-÷ ÷ ÷ Security Void VOLUME 27, 1968 789 ÷ ÷ Kevin O '.SShs.eRa.~ REWEW FOR RELIGIOUS 790 scendence of the limits of an external command. If this resolution were consistently in the direction of ignoring the external command, it would not be authentic to its own inspiration; for it would not be recognizing the genuinely "normative" character of authority in the community.It is not the "norm" that is refused; it is the assumption that the norm is "absolute." When this obedience is given, it is not lacking in the formal motiva-tion of social obedience, for it does yield to authority as such, but within a community context. The real ques-tion is: When this obedience is not given (in the usual form of conformity to the external command), is it objectively defective in the essential moral value of obedience? But the question is not one of theory, as we have repeatedly shown; it is one of interpretation of the "formula" used as a guideline, as a workable living pattern. It is less a question of what is externally done (or not done) on a particular occasion; it is more a ques-tion of what is the psychology behind it and how it could stand with, and not destroy, the genuine psychol-ogy of social obedience. For a person who forms his mind on these personalist lines cannot have a psychological security of absolute norms. He must find a new type of security elsewhere: in the absoluteness of his commitment to Love and to self-giving and to community in the sincerity of his own conscience; in the relative service that he finds for this in the structures of community, with its members, and their offices, and their common acdon. His is the security of committed love and appreciated structures. The "absoluteness" here is genuine but new: it includes the impredictability of human love, and the incalculable progress of providence. This same personalist approach underlies a sense of the Church as the "people" of God, impelled by the Holy Spirit of Love. The Church is a divinely created, supernaturally indefectible home-situation of truly per-sonal love and sacrifice. It is through and in the Church as a community that the voice of eternal Love in Christ comes to the conscience of her members. It is through and in the Church as a community that her members respond to this voice and live their self-gift to others and to Love itself. Ttie Church is being rediscovered as a community; the Constitution on the Church of Vatican II places its chapter on the "people of God" prior to its discussion of the place of the hierarchy within the people of God. The community of the Church is the natural horizon of our love as it is divinized in Christ; the Church in this sense is indeed the pillar and the very "ground" of Love. In this sense she serves the mystery of human love by creating the conditions for it to. be real. In the Church, the hierarchy, vested with the office of liturgical celebration and of missionary ex-pansion of the Church's mystery of love, and vested also with true social authority to rule the people of God, be-comes the pivot and the support of this "ground" of love. This is why the members of the Church, .as they carry each other's burdens and so fulfill the law of love, look on the Church with reverence as their "mother," even when they see her humble limitations. It is not initially a sense of duty and of obedience that binds them to the Church and to the hierhrchy; it is a sense of vocation and of belonging, since they are meant for her and cannot truly love outside of her. "Outside of m~, you can do nothing." This is why the same nuance of obedience enters here within the Church as we noticed on the gen-eral level: the entire problematic of authority-obedience itself serves the deeper problematic of community-love. At pre~ent there is a conflict, within and without the Church, between those who maintain a long established modus vivendi based on and leading to security of ab-solute norms, and those who demand the creation of a new modus vivendi based on and leading to security of committed love. It is certain that the "older" pattern is well established. It is only recently that it has been challenged; and the challenge has been resented, with shock, by the "older" generation. They have experienced a unique insecurity on seeing the very principles of their security openly questioned, on finding the present age disenchanted with the absoluteness of the old ways and seemingly submerged in the pure relativism of love. They have been asked, implicitly at least, to approve patterns of action in others that are completely at variance with their own inner orientation to norm-security and even to accommodate their own mentality and pattern of action to them. They cannot believe that their own generous sacrifice and 'heroic loyalty over a lifetime have been unnecessary and that their conscious foundation of security is chimerical. They tend to harden the "essential" theory of authority-obedience- security, in the language they have always known it, into the one and only workable living pattern they have known and to admit no other. They feel now that the essential props of their security are under attack. It is certain too that the "new" pattern is noble in its inspiration. Because it is noble and even more because it is new, it tends to remain as yet in the order of ideals and even of inspirational "slogans" (for example, "personal fulfillment," the need for "dialogue") and has not yet formed for itself a realistic working pattern. Its ÷ ÷ ÷ Security Void VOLUME 27, 1968 791 + + Kevi~t O'Shea, C.Ss.R. REVIEW FOR RELIGIOUS idealism is tender to attack and resents the fact that others cannot understand it but reject it and even regard it as harmful. The "new" generation cannot believe that they ought honestly regard their ideals as unreal and settle for the pseudo-satisfaction of security through absolute norms and legal authority. They tend to stiffen their allegiance to their principles and to be insecure precisely because they know they are not yet accepted or put into practice at community level. It is Strange that precisely here the "new" generation may be rather unfaithful to its own principles. Instead of placing their real security in committed love and self-giving, they seem to insist---immediately---on the security of acceptance in the "older" community; they want their values upheld and identified as legitimate and valid, they want to be understood by others and not thought rebels, they want to be integrated, as they are, into their community's way of life and tradition which they feel that they do not violate but practice in a new way. Would that they have all this; but is it primary to their own principles? At all events, a certain paralysis is taking hold of protagonists of both points of view, which is deepening their insecurity. It happens especially where there has been little attempt at renewal of commonity living structures; where a tradition of legalistic obedience has set up a quasi-divine right of the establishment; where a system of bureaucracy or a veil of anonymity or a pro-tection of prestige has been used to give firmness to the status quo without facing the issues; where a policy of "via media" or of "prudence" is used merely to cover a refusal to do anything; where there is a visible split into parties "for" and "against" the new idealism; where in such mental alienation of one group from another, action comes mainly from party politics, dominant personalities, or emotional enthusiasms created by prop-aganda; where unkind name-slinging is used to make real dialogue and acceptance impossible. Here a critical impasse is soon reached; only the external signs of true community remain. Even those who try to remain tran-quil are misjudged; they are thought insincere in the face of a common anxiety. Men go through the motions of what they have always done, or would wish to do, without the fulfillment that ought to come from it. They live in a "security void." It is made acute when they refuse the obvious dilemma of the situation: rebel or accept. The malaise can be cured by neither; neither by open irreverence, public agitation, mental alienation from the whole situation, refusal to cooperate, invocation of one's rights (from legal authority or from conscience), retreat into one's , I work; nor by timidly coveting up and finding a false refuge in permission (of authority or of conscience), or by the cowardice of giving away all serious attempt at idealism (of whatever form) and settling for no security at all. Those who rightly refuse these false avenues know that they have no anchorage left; they are nonplused and beaten. There is a "credibility gap" between themselves and any founded security, a wavering of trust in asking completely serious questions at all. In this fundamental disillusionment they cease to live in the presence of a liberating truth (since they refuse the falsehood of double truth, one of idealism and another of reality). Their life becomes shallow and superficial, and. their work is not reliable. This is the "security void." This study is a diagnosis, not a solution. It can con, dude with a simple suggestion of seven thoughts, to .be pondered in the present crisis. (1) The theory behind the "new" personalist position is m reality no different from the theory behind the "older" essentialist position. On the general level, it is simply expressing the primacy of the person over society and the primacy of charity over the social virtues. On the particular level, the cases where it might admit a refusal of conformity to the authoritative dictate of a superior can well be reduced to cases already well known in traditional moral theology: epikeia, balance of laws, inconveniences, rights of conscience, and so forth. It is true that the expression given to these cases is new; it is emotive and enthusiastic and thereby tending to more difformity than has been allowed in the older working pattern. But this does not prove the theory is incorrect; it proves only that it is ambiguous in its expression as reduced to a working pattern. It is therefore on the level of that working pattern, in practice, that any incor-rectness should be removed. At least, there is room for real "dialogue" in a theoretical agreement on founda-tions. (2) The spirit of the personalist position, as it is typi-cally expressed at present, does not appear to allow suffi-ciently for the role of social authority within a personal communityi and this defect comes from its idealism. Let us grant thi~ idealism absolutely, but let us remember that we are asking it of men who live in a sin,situation and who carry within themselves profound inclinations contrary to gene.rous and sacrificial self-giving in love. The first evidence of these inclinations is the tendency for groups to isolate within a community and to consider the expressions of love that-correspond to their .own idealism without due consideration of the interests and peculiar form of love of other groups. On the very prin-ciples of total lov~ within the total personal community, .!- ÷ ÷ Security Void VOLUME 27, 1968 793 + ÷ ÷ Kevin O'Shea, .Ss.R. REVIEW FOR RELIGIOUS granting the intrinsic weakness of man, there must be some human authority to determine the forms of authen-tic love for all when need arises; and this authority must be conceded a per se place in the community. The typ-ical personalist expositions at present stress the idealism of what man is called to do somewhat at the expense of the necessary regime for its human realization, a vital part of which is authority. It is possible to rethink the meaning of authority as an inner demand of the personal community. In this way, the tendency to conceive an opposition between the expressions of a responsible authority and the inherent claims 9f love and conscience will weaken; at least, a better balance between the two will be achieved in practice, and in due time the formnlas and the working patterns will be rightly adjusted. (3) But if sin has abounded, grace has abounded even more. In assessing the present situation, we may reason-ably judge that mankind is on the threshold of a sig-nificant evolution in its living experience o[ community and of the meaning of personal love. We must not poison the wells of this inspiration. We must therefore admit, in theory and in practice, that the older static unchal-lenged working pattern of community must also evolve to be more in accord with the new inspiration. Any at-tempt to pin one's security finally in the unchanged positions of old is doomed to failure. To back down before the challenge of the present in the name of the weakness of human nature, which needs a lower stand-ard, is a practical denial of the triumph of grace. (4) This evolution in the living of community-love must of its nature be slow: "i(ll great matters must come to ripening slowly" (Congar). Those who live through the present transition and cause it must have a peculiar patience: a deep-rooted existential conviction that history is slowly changing through the measured pace of their lifetime. To the extent that their love and self-giving is really great, it will have the patience of the times, seconding and not subverting the dynamism by which God is bringing His gracious design to com-pletion in His own manner. It is perhaps in this fidelity to what is perceived as the bvolving character of provi-dence, that a genuine security can be found. Paradox-ically, it is~ patience that engenders hope, and not the reverse! (5) If social authority can and must be given a place de se in the personal community, it can and must also be found a special place de facto in the currently evolving form of personal community. Our original frailty is showing itself in a new facet: our inability to assure the tranquil passage from the older order to the new, evi-denced in the intransigence of some and the impetuosity of others, and the imprudence of all. There is need of a new awareness of humility if we are to engage correctly this exciting and dangerous transition of history. And there is need for,,social authority to recognize a new responsibility: that of assisting, with its own power of juridic firmness, the pattern of change and of progress from one order to the other. In the exercise of this office, social authority will slowly commend itself more truly to the humility our times must learn. (6) St. Thomas once described .the effects of human law as disciplina et pax. No doubt, he envisaged these mightly mysteries in the static culture of his day; but they remain valid, and needed, in the day of dynamic evolution of human living forms that is ours. Our current emergence to greater times must not be turbulent but tranquil; and the tranquility we need we must learn. We can only learn it if all those who make up the human community at present, "old" as well as "new," play their proper roles together. An "o]-der" point of view is neces-sary today to show the new inspiration, which it accepts at root, the realistic way to find its own survival. A "new" point of view is the soul of the upsurge, and its cry is for a love and a self-gift to all; it is necessary that it learn the peace of the future by establishing its own peace in the present, by accepting "togetherness" with those who do not yet appreciate its value and teaching them by deeds what it has not succeeded in communi-cating to them in words. The most unusual trait of the "new order" of love is that it can be created by real love in ariy conditions; it does not depend on special structures or circumstances but relies on its own dyna-mism. If it is to have more desirable conditi6ns in .the future, it must learn to give its own peace to those of the present. (7) Finally, those involved in this development, which means all of us, should be big enough to overlook mis-takes in detail for the greatness of the cause. We must become conscious of who we are in our times and in history; we must live with a sense of our call to the greatness of love together. In this sense, we must know not a "security void" but a "security fulfillment." + ÷ ÷ Security Void VOLUNE.27, 1968 PAUL MOLINARI, S.]. Renewal of Religious Life according to the Founder's Spirit Paul Molinari, s.J., writes from Borgo Santo Spirito, 5; Rome 00100, Italy. REVIEW FOR RELIGIOUS 796 In presenting these few thoughts, I should like to clarify some theological points which have not, I believe, been sutticiently understood when we speak of a return to the origins of each religious institute. The conciliar decree Perfectae caritatis insists on a life of union with Christ, leading us to consider Him not only as the exemplar of the life of a religious but as the very form of this life.I think that this aspect has not been sufficiently stressed, because the wealth of mean-ing of certain rich but very concise expressions of the decree has not been adequately understood. The decree deliberately avoids detail in order not to bind religious life to concrete forms, identical for all, which would pre-vent it from developing freely in Christ. Rather, it sought above all to emphasize that we must make an ef-fort to conceive and live our religious life as one of donation to Christ, in which we must share His way of livin~g, His spirit. Hence the insistence on a supernatural principle. W~ must always keep in mind that the mis-sion of the Church is a continuation of the mission of Christ and that the mission of Christ is specifically su-pernatural. We must realize, therefore, that in order to participate in the mission of Christ, in order to continue it, we must of necessity adopt His criteria. It is pre-cisely a question of a gift of life--the Word made flesh in or,der to give supernatural life, divine life, to man. Participation in the life of Christ is what gives vitality to the Church. Participation in the redeeming sacrifice is what gives life to man. It is the sacrifice of Christ giving His life for the Church that ought to lead re-ligious to give their life for the Church, that is, for the supernatural good of all of the People of God, for a more abundant communication of divine life to the entire fam-ily of man. I insist on this point precisely because today there is, at times, a tendency to stress almost exclusively the necessity of adapting the exterior apostolate and of bringing it into line with the possibilities offered by modern technological society or to concentrate almost exclusively on the social apostolate of the Church. We must not forget, however, that Christ's apostolate is not only, nor even principally, a social apostolate but a supernatural apostolate: the communication of divine life. This presupposes that we can and often ought to see to the material needs of man and interest ourselves in serious and pressing questions of social justice, but our apostolate does not stop there. We must above all consider the supernatural value of religious life as such, the value of this self-donation which, even though it may remain unperceived, attains something very precious for others on a supernatural level precisely because it is a donation, a sacrifice of self, In this context, I would like to point out that we tend too easily to overestimate the criterion of exterior effi-cacy and of visible success. Is it not true that, when Christ died on the cross, the efficacy of this sacrifice of His entire life could not be seen? It is important to emphasize this at a time when the profound value of self-donation is being called into question precisely be-cause so little is said about the guiding principle of the Lord in His apostolate. Moved by the Spirit, He spent Himself, He delivered Himself on the cross. That is the force of the Spirit. We find ourselves here in the realm of faith. In the light of faith we begin to understand the value of a life hidden in Christ, of a life of im-molation, a life of love, a life which gives up its life for others--and nothing is more beautiful than to lay down our life for others. The ultimate solution to the crisis in contemporary religious life can be found in the realization of religious life as a life of self-donation. Not that religious life should lead merely to the interior life. On the contrary, it will lead us to a great activity; it must express itself exteriorly but in such a way that it is supernatural in character. It is along these lines that we can find a solution to today's problems, particularly those concerning the social apostolate. At this point, I quote those beautiful phrases contained in the decree Per[ectae caritatis: Fired by the love which the Holy Spirit pours out in their hearts, they live their lives ever increasingly for Christ and for his Body which is the Church. Consequently, the more fervent their union with Christ through this giving of themselves, which includes the whole of their lives, the richer the life of ÷ ÷ ÷ Founder"s Spirit VOLUME 27, 1968 797 REVIEW FOR RELIG~OU5 798 the Church becomes and the more fruitful her apostolate (n. 1). The gospel brings out that the characteristic note of Christ's mission was His docility to the Holy Spirit. I think that this is why the decree insists so much~ on the Holy Spirit, His action in the Church and in the soul of founders. If Christ, the head of the Church, began His mission led by the Spirit, the Incarnation itself being the work of the Spirit, the Church, which is the Mysti-cal Body of Christ, likewise ought to be docile to the Spirit. The Church, as such, tries to be so, and she has the permanent assistance of the Holy Spirit, her soul: Christ, having been lifted up from the earth, is drawing all men to himself. Rising from the dead, he sent his life-giving Spirit upon his disciples and through this Spirit has established his body, the Church, as the universal sacrament of salvation. Sitting at the right hand of the Father, he is continually .active in the world, leading men to the Church and through her joining them more closely to himself and making them par-takers of his glorious life by nourishing them with his own body and blood. Therefore, the promised restoration which we are awaiting has already begun in Christ, is carried forward in the mission of the Holy Spirit, and through him continues in the Church (Lumen gentium n. 48). In virtue of the same principle, each member of the Church should likewise follow the motions of the life-giving Spirit. We are touching here on one of the most fundamental principles of the religious life and of the Church. As the conciliar document Perfectae caritatis says, the Holy Spirit has raised up in the Church men and women who founded religious families. These souls were called to a providential mission in the Church and were particularly docile to the action of the Holy Spirit: Indeed from the very beginning of the Church men and women have set about following Christ with greater freedom and imitating him more closely through the practice of the evangelical counsels, each in his own way leading a life dedi-cated to God. Many of them, under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit, lived as hermits or founded religiou~families, which the Church gladly welcomed and approved by her authority. So it is that in accordance with the Divine Plan a wonderful variety of religious communities has grown up which has made it easier for the Church not only to be e~u!pped for every good work and ready for the work of the mlnxstry--the build-ing up of the Body of Christ--but also to appear adorned with the various gifts of her children like a spouse adorned for her husband and for the manifold Wisdom of God to be revealed through her (Perfectae caritatis, n. I). The Spirit who led Christ is the same Spirit who leads those who are united to Christ and in whom, as with docile instruments, He can more freely carry on the salvific mission of communicating divine life to His Church and to all mankind. With these theological principles in mind, it is easier to understand that while the. cardinal point of renewal is the Gospel and total, unconditional surrender and consecration to the redeem-ing Christ, another is precisely the docility and fidelity of members of a religious institute to the spirit of their founder. Actually, the mission of Christ is not yet completed; it continues in the Church which must remain faithful to His inspiration. This is why charismatic graces, that is divine inspirations given in view of certain apostolic necessities, continue to be given to the Church. These graces are evident in a special way in all those who have truly given their heart to the Lord and who, without setting any conditions or limits, allow themselves to be guided by God, that is to say the saints and those great charismatic leaders, the founders and foundresses of re-ligious families. But while this action of the Holy Spirit is particularly visible in the soul of founders, it does not stop with them. The same Spirit, wishing to continue the mission that He has entrusted to the founders ~for the sake of the Church, acts in the soul of each member of the People of God and calls some of them to follow our Lord and dedicate their lives to the institutes established by these holy men and women. It is as i£ the Holy Spirit sent a ray of light which filled the soul of: the founder. This ray continues on, through the founder, until it reaches the soul of those who are called to a certain religious family. It is a ray of light which has its own particular characteristics and limitations. It is thus that institutes receive a specific mission from the Holy Spirit. For this reason there is a variety of institutes in the Church, which are all necessary. And the Holy Spirit inspires and continues to inspire the members of all religious families but in different ways, according to their specific task in the Church. It is in this sense that St. Paul, while dealing with the Mystical Body, speaks of the di-versity of functions within the Church; and there is no doubt that this variety is very good for the Church. It is extremely important, therefore, that religious know what the authentic spirit of their founder or foundress is and that they share it consciously. This is what the Council intended when it invited religious, especially in view of the renewal of their life, to discover anew the riches of this spirit and to find life-giving in-spiration in it. For that reason, the motu proprio Ec-clesiae sanctae says it is essential for each religious family to study the sources and to go down to the real roots of their institute. It is, therefore, indispensable in 4- VOLUME 27, 1968 ÷ ÷ Paul Molinari~ $.J. REVIEW FOR RELIGIOUS 8OO the preparation for special chapters charged with putting into practice the Council's teachings and directives, to engage in serious and searching study concerning the charism of the founder or foundress and to discover new depths concerning the authentic inspiration which gave birth to any given institute. It is obvious that in many cases a good number of studies have already been made on this precise point, and these studies can and ought to be judiciously used. It would be an error, nevertheless, to limit such research to an analysis of these studies, because each generation has its own sensitivity, its own special g~ace for discovering certain accents, and is struck by elements which previous generations prob-ably knew of but did not make use of with the same de-gree of explicit understanding. What happens in biblical exegesis and in the authentic evolution of dogma and theology is likewise true of the progressive understanding of what the Holy Spirit wished to start with founders and continues, through their mediation, throughout the ages in the institutes which He raised up in the Church. Precisely because we are dealing here with an interven-tion of God Himself in the history of the Church and of an initiative that He wishes to prolong and renew, not only today but also in the future, it is imperative that this search for the true spirit of a founder or foundress be done with complete objectivity. In no way is it permis-sible to base such a study on feelings or on interpreta-tions and intuitions which are more or less subjective. Reverence for the work of God in the soul of the founder as well as reverence for the divine vocation by which we were called to become a member of our religious in-stitutes requires that we remain humbly open to God's light. In no way should we try to make the divine grace given to the founder coincide violently or arbitrarily with our limited personal ideas. On the contrary, the action of the Holy Spirit in the soul of the founder ought to be our point of reference ]n examining our own way of thinking and acting. Much is being said today about the discernment of spirits. But this is exactly what the Church has been concerned with in regard to founders. We have the as-surance that they were acting under a charismatic im-pulse. We, in turn, participate in this same impulse to the degree that we are faithful to the grace which called us to our religious family, and that we let it de-velop and grow in us. It must be noted in this context that while the Church invites us to recognize loyally the spirit of our origins, she does not at all exclude the possibility that this spirit may find different expressions throughout the .ages. There is a tendency, at times, to identify the spirit of the founders with their works. But the spirit gave life to a work; it determined its beginning. It can happen that, as time passes, a work, begun with an intention largely determined by the needs and circumstances of the age and place in which the founder lived, has changed. In present day conditions, it may no longer b~ possible to continue these same works or, due to exterior circum-stances, to carry them on in the same way as when they were begun. Fidelity to the letter can thus become in-fidelity to the spirit of the founder. In other words, it is not sufficient simply to make an historical catalog of our works. We must try to see them, spiritually and integ-rally,~ from the inside, in order to seize the inspiration which animated the founder when he acted. It is only if we succeed in grasping this profound inspiration that we shall find, at the same time, that true fidelity to the founder which the Church is asking usa to preserve in deciding what adaptations are to be made. If the spirit of the founder is a living reality to us, we shall likewise be able to formulate it adequately in modern language, fully in accord with the contemporary situation. To be truly faithful, we must go to the very heart of the mat-ter, that is, go to the very root of the reasons why the founder acted and discover the ultimate criteria of the choices he made. We must not be content with discover-ing what the founder did; we have to discover why, whether we have grasped the inner inspiration. While reflecting so openly and clearly on this essen-tial principle, I want to make a brief point dictated by charity, justice, wisdom. It is well known that on the occasion of special chapters in all religious institutes, there is an atmosphere of unrest among truly generous religious who are loyal both to the Church and to their institute. This uneasiness is ultimately caused by an in-adequate understanding of the principles which have just been stated. On the one hand, there are religious who do not understand clearly enough that the concrete expression of the identical spirit of the founder c/m, and even ought to change according to the circumstances and mentality of succeeding generations. Every innovation, consequently, seems' to them to be a departure from the authentic spirit of the founder and, as such;' inadmissi-ble. On the other hand, there are also religious who, with a certain naivet~ which is no less serious, proclaim loudly that only the present generation has discovered the true spirit of the founder and that former genera-tions did not understand it at all. The mutual error of these two tendencies is simply that they both think that one, and only one, generation can discover once and for all what the authentic spirit of the founder is, exhaust the wealth of its possibilities, and determine defi'nitively 4, 4, Fou~w~$ ,Sp~r~g " VOLUME 27, 1968 4" 4" 4" Paul Molinari, S.]. REVIEW FOR RELIGIOUS 8O2 all possible authentic expressions of this spirit. But, as we have already said, such a conception errs by not taking into account human limitations and historical sense. Each generation of religious has its own strong points and its own deficiencies, it own profound intui-tions as well as its own task. It is precisely along these lines, with the greatest reverence and objectivity, that each generation of rel.igious should look towards the authentic origins of their institute and delve into the heritage of its founder's authentic inspiration. In this process of humble and reverent seeking, which is at the same time both painful and liberating, each generation should make the charism of the founder and the in-stitute their own. Each generation, through prayer, med-itation, and study, should seek to find out, according to the spirit of the founder, what ought to be kept or abandoned in the present day. As can be seen, this work is both very necessary and very delicate, requiring hum-ble and utter abnegation. But if we understand that the true patrimony of the Church and the task of renewal are at stake, we shall not be afraid to renounce personal points of view or preferences in order to go wherever the Holy Spirit may lead us. Experience teaches us, moreover, that such a return to the authentic origins of an institute is not only possible but also extraordinarily fruitful. There is immediately a very keen and positive reaction when anyone speaks with competence to religious men and women about the documents left by their founder or about his life. I am sure that we have all already experienced this. Can it be explained in any other way except by the fact that men-tion was made of something that the Holy Spirit had already put in the heart of these religious? If they are put into direct contact with the sources of their institute, they explicitly find in them what they were formerly more or less conscious of and which had led them to one particular religious family and not another. The Spirit of God gives a certain sort of interior spiritual sensitivity and a spontaneous inclination towards the spirit of the founder and its authentic manifestations. If religious are brought into direct contact with the spirit of the founder, they are moved to ever greater generosity and immediately pass to a higher plane. Many people can thus be helped to overcome their difficulties, precisely because the very root of their life has been touched. It goes without saying, moreover, that this life-giving con-tact with the authentic inspiration of the founder greatly facilitates responsible adaptation to conditions and cir-cumstances of time and place. This is obviously the reason why the conciliar decree Per[ectae caritatis de- clares that any adaptation ought to come forth as a pre-cious fruit of interior renewal, that is of a return to the gospel and to the authentic spirit Of. the founder. Let us now say a word about the concrete manner of proceeding in this extremely delicate and important matter. Experience seems to bear out the following: Af-ter the religious have been informed of work done on the sources and after they have been invited to meditate on the different aspects of renewal and even to give their opinions in writing, it is a good practice to gather to-gether those who have showed special interest in the subject, especially those who likewise have a good scien-tific preparation. Ask them to study the documents and everything that has been done previously in the way of research and analysis in order to bring to light the outstanding elements, that is, those which recur con-stantly in the thought of the founder. The outcome will not all be the same because each one has his own per-sonality and way of looking at things; but by comparing the results, a sufficiently objective view will be obtained which will permit the characteristic elements of the life and thought of the founder to be isolated. These in turn will help orient the work of renewal. When it is time to rewrite the constitutions, they can be based on the discoveries made, without fear of changing or modi-fying illegitimately the thought of the founder which these objective studies will have brought out more clearly. The next step is to compare these results with the life, constitutions, and works of today. This will be rela-tively easy if the fundamental points have already been clarified. The various editions of the constitutions, pro-mulgated at different stages in the history of the in-stitute, should be examined to see what elements have been forgotten or not sufficiently emphasized. This type of research can contribute notably to a greater direct knowledge of the sources and will bring to light again the true thought of the founder. If this research is car-ried on according to these objective criteria and is al-ways inspired by theologically and spiritually sound principles, a naive desire of change for the sake of change will be avoided. On the contrary, if changes are necessary or opportune, they will be made without great interior difficulty because all will see more clearly what Gods wants of us and how. He is asking us to mani-fest our fidelity to the authentic spirit of the founder. It is equally obvious that, in the same way, we can more easily avoid those distressing internal divisions among members of the same institute since all will have the conviction that the changes proposed are based on a ÷ ÷ ÷ Founder's Spirit VOLUME 27 19e,8 80,~ , 4. .4. Paul Molinari~ REVIEW FOR RELIGIOUS 8O4 common desire to correspond fully to what is under-stood to be the true spirit which gave rise to the in-stitute and its authentic charism. In the same way,-it will likewise be easier to decide What changes must be made in the exterior life and even in the works of the institute. We say that it will be easier, because when it comes to works, there are naturally other problems which are generally very seri-ous and which cannot be naively ignored. But I am con-vinced that if, first of all, everyone is in agreement on the essential lines of renewal according to the spirit of the founder, courage will more easily be found when all are working together in the solidarity of a chapter. If, for example, the members of a chapter 'clearly see that today certain works no longer correspond to what the founder wanted in his day, it should be easier /or the chapter to take clear and decided decisions, without causing profound dissensions, without sidestepping the solution and without leaving all the most serious deci-sions to the sole authority of the superior general and. his council. Would it not be better for the chapter, which truly represents the institute, to take essential decisions, basing them on a greater knowledge of the spirit and charism of the founder and his work, and thus tracing the way for times to come? In answer to Christ's call, religious left all things to ,follow Him, that is, to go with Christ wherever He wishes to go. It seems evident that Christ wishes to go where the needs are the most urgent. One of the things that we would do well to consider when we speak of union with Christ in the religious life is that it is not simply a question of going out to the poor but of leaving all things, and following Christ in a spirit of donation and complete availability. This can sometimes mean leaving well established works that are running well but which, having reached the point where they do run well, no longer need us. In such cases, led by the spirit of the founder, we should go where social condi-tions are more or less similar to those that prompted the founder to act in his day. It is then that we have truly vital contact with the authentic spirit of the founder. In a certain sense, it can be said that where this spirit adaptatioh is' found, religious live in closer union with the spirit of the founder. Indeed, when, as it were, the very soul of the founder has been refound, there is no crisis in religious life and vocations are not lacking. It is clear that those souls who have followed their founder .most closely have found, under the motion of the Holy Spirit, what they were seeking. Naturally, it would be absurd to maintain that all present-day works of religious should be abandoned or that all need to be adapted or again that all changes should be made instantly. We must, however, have the courage to face these questions honestly and to solve them with the same courage that characterized the action of founders, the courage of the saints. It is worthwhile meditating, in this light, on the fol-lowing words of His Eminence, Cardinal Agagianian, Prefect of the Sacred Congregation for the Propagation of the Faith: Evolution has considerably modified the physiognomy of Christianity and the sign value of this type of Institution. Where formerly there were charitable works to answer press-ing social needs there is now state socialization or the national-ization of an entire sector. If this has not been done yet, it is at least the intention of young governments and is being planned by large official international organizations. Are not our institutions, which were begun with such generosity and which answered such authentic social needs, now anachronistic, technically .surpassed, not viable financially, lacking true Christian witness value since other official organisms which are better equipped have taken charge of this sector? We must therefore avoid duplication, useless waste, unequal competi-tion, and rethink our activity, which must be missionary to the greatest possibl~, degree and carried on in the light of an apostolic vision which is more freshly evangelical. It is a ques-tion of discovering the true exigencies of the hour, of estab-lishing priorities, and of effectuating our own "reconversion" by turning to work which is doubtlessly socially less spectacula~ but which is more specifically a work of the Church, a work which is directly missionary in scope and character. At the present time, religious must be very open to the grace of the Spirit in order to follow Christ effectively and continue His mission. We should all clearly un-derstand that the charismatic grace given to the founder and his institute is a call from God, a talent which has been confided to us. God asks that the talents He gives be well used. We must not be afraid to make them fructify. Such a fear should never paralyze our generosity and our donation to Christ. It is therefore not enough, necessarily, to keep works just as they are. They must be made to bear the greatest amount of fruit possible. How can this be done? That is where the difficulty lies. It is certainly not permissible simply to keep the capital. If the apostolic return amounts only to 2% or 3%, we must ask ourselves if this capital could not be used in a better way. If we consider the exigencies of the Lord, we can more calmly envisage the fact that the decisions to be taken will sometimes lead to very serious changes, but we must accept them in a spirit of love and fidelity to the true charism of the founder and his work. But we must consider more specifically and more ex-plicitly the ecclesial dimension of our personal vocation as well as the vocation of our institute. The institute is part of the Church and it has a specific function within ÷ ÷ ÷ the Church. It is a living part of the Church and it will have life insofar as it accepts its function for the sake of the Church. This will help us to penetrate more and more into our vocation of being available for the service of Christ and His Church. We will experience the joy of giving life, the consciousness of being the grain of wheat which falls to the ground and dies, and to bear fruit a hundredfold. Problems will find their solution in this deeper vision of religious life as a life of union with Christ in order to continue, in Him and with Him, His mission of communicating divine life to man. 4, ÷ Paul Molinad~ REVIEW FOR RELIGIOUS 80fi SISTER M. DENIS, S.O.S New Trends in Community Living Something which has existed since the beginning, that we have heard, and we have seen with our own eyes; that we have watched and touched with our hands: the Word who is life-- this is our subject. That life was made visible; we saw it and we are giving our testimony, telling you of the eternal life which was with the Father and has been made visible to us; we are telling you so that you too may be in union with us, as we are in union with the Father and with his Son Jesus Christ. --1 John 1: I-3 In* these opening lines of John's First Epistle, he is trying to translate into a multiplicity of feeble human concepts and words, Life itself which is not many but one, not a thing but a person--the triune Person of the Godhead. When discussing the "new trends in commu-nity living" with you, I shall attempt to follow the exam-ple of John. Words are a very necessary component of human communication, but nevertheless annoying. As soon as we describe a reality we break it into parts and tend to give the impression that if every part described is present, we have the reality itself. Rather, the reality of community that I hope to translate into practical and concrete terms, is not composite but one--permeated with the dynamism of that divine incarnated union John spoke of. Unfortunately, that dynamism cannot be put into Words; it must be lived and experienced. Therefore, the approach in this paper will be experi- * This is the text of an address given in May, 1968, to a meeting of Canadian major superiors. ÷ ÷ ÷ Sister M. Denis, S.O.S., writes from 62 Hargrave St.; Winnipeg 1, Mani-toba; Canada. VOLUME 27, 1968 80~ ÷ ÷ Sister M. Denis~ $.0.5. REVIEW FOR RELIGIOUS 808 ential and practical and not a rephrasing of the excellent literature on community with which you are familiar. First, we shall examine the bases or principles upon which community is created, investigate the trends evi-dent in community living today, attempt to describe the type of community life that is unfolding from these trends, and propose some practical ways of effecting the transition from the present structures of community life to that form toward which we are evolving. Rather than burden you with another definition of community, I would prefer a descriptive approach. We are well aware of the different kinds of communities that exist among men. There is the natural community of the family and the artificial or contrived community of the organization, society, or state. All too often, we have described the religious com-munity solely in terms of one ot~ these two societies: our terminology of mother, father, brother, sister, reflects the familial concept; and our highly structured religious corporations betray the organizational concept. Al-though religious community can benefit from aspects of these two basic human groupings, we must with deep faith live the essence of religious community as an en- Spirited or Spirit-filled community: "Father, may they be one in us, as you are in me and I am in you, so that the world may believe it was you who sent me" (Jn 17:21). To the individual person who has embraced the re-ligious life, what then is community? I enter community so that I may begin to gift myself to others, to give the life I have to another, and to re-ceive from them in the same way; and this transmitting, this sharing of life, of wholeness is carried over into my apostolate. This life is given and received in faith be-cause the life or dynamism of community that permeates it is not my own--it is the life of the Spirit, the Spirit of Christ who shows us the Father; my gift to God-~a gift which has come from Him in the first pIace--is to give life to others by the life that is in me. True community, therefore, is created, not structured or legislated. PRINCIPLES The principles or bases upon which an en-Spirited community is created must be grasped, not only intel-lectually, but also experientially by every member in the community, although not necessarily to the same extent or depth. None of these principles stand alone; rather they are interdependent and interrelated. Trinitarian The ultimate model of en-Spirited community is the trinitarian life as it is lived by Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. We have heard this so often that we tend to dis-miss it as another cliche. What does it mean in actual practice? It means that each person in community must be and do what God Himself through Christ and in the Spirit is and does: namely, He gathers, unites, establishes communion. How? By communication. Supportive words, other means of communicating love give life to another, as the Father begets His Son, the Word. This gift to one another and the response from one another engenders love--the Spirit. It is at this point where Trinity and en-Spirited community merge. ~lgape. If this trinitarian love-life is incarnated and experi-enced, the cohesive bond in community is the living agape of Christ, not the force of rule or custom. We must have the courage to examine and question the place of rule in religious life. In actual fact, which has frequently taken precedence---our holy rule or the gospel? The experience of agape is an entirely new human ex-perience. It is this gift of God--the Spirit. Pagans could only look at the early Christian community and exclaim: "See how these Christians love one another." But the words "love" or "charity" are, at best, a weak transla-tion. Agape is the knowledge and love of God--that very dynamism of the Trinity itself--which, through a free gift of God, has been incarnated, embodied in human community--a Spirit-filled community. Peace and joy, in which are contained all the other fruits of the Spirit, characterize such a religious community. The ultimate expression of agape is the love feast itself--the Eucharist. The en-Spirited or agape community is effected by the liturgy--when members are conscious of communicating or uniting themselves together in Christ. In turn, their liturgical expression is intensified by their community life. Incarnational Spirituality In order that community reflect trinitarian life or agape--which are different expressions of the same real-ity- the spirituality upon which it is based must be truly incarnational. Again we are back to the importance of faith. If the Son of God, the Word, became flesh, be-came incarnate, then the world, the whole world is "shot through with the grandeur of God," as Hopkins wrote. We cannot arbitrarily determine which particular ma-terial signs signify the presence of Christ; this is an in-sidious form of idolatry. Worse still, we cannot attempt first to establish a relationship with the transcendent God and then go out to other people. Because of the Incarnation, the transcendent God has been revealed to + ÷ Community Living VOLUME 27, 1968 809, ÷ ÷ Sisger M. Denis, $.0.S. REVIEW FOR RELIGIOUS 810 us precisely as immanent. This immanence is continued in the world through the gift of the Spirit. The experi-ence of agape, the witness of a Spirit-filled community, is the experiential embodiment of this transcendence. In community agape we realize the fullness of the In-carnation. Respect for the Integrity of the Individual Person Community is not achieved through uniformity; but in practice our preoccupation with uniformity often militates against that respect for tl~e integrity of the individual person so necessary for the developme.nt of an en-Spirited community. This respect involves accept-ance first of ourselves as we are--not as we would like to be. We must risk taking off our masks, not only to others, but also to ourselves, and be truly authentic. I never realized what a mask the traditional habit could be until a few summers ago at the Superior's Conference in Portland, Oregon. During the day we walked around very conscious of religious decorum and dignity. When the magic hour of 2:00 p.m. struck, we converged on the swimming pool. As each layer of clothing came off, the person emerged. This respect [or the integrity of the person involves acceptance ot another in the same way---as they are and not as we would like them to be. If we love only those who share our ideas, our thoughts and aspirations, then we are merely loving an extension of ourselves. We must love what is truly the other--in which there is nothing of oneself. This acceptance is a respect based not on toleration or on charity or even because we see Christ in another; rather this respect is based on the unique dignity created in that person by God Him-self. Often we bypass this unique dignity for "good and noble reasons." Our acceptance and love should always be based on the person, not dependent on their actions. This is a great danger in community life, where we do 'not have the natural ties of blood as in the family and where much stress is placed on uniformity. Community, as we have been describing it, is not necessarily the common life. This communal acceptance involves a sharing, an openness with one another dictated not on my terms but by the other person's real needs for growth. In listening to the conversation of some religious I get the impression that self-fulfillment is selfishness, not selflessness. We only"receive when we give. And very often giving hurts. Serf-fulfillment is the very mystery of the death-resurrection of Christ incarnated and re-peated in the lives of men and women. Originality, Creativity The external structures of the en-Spirited community --structures which may take many and varied forms according to times and places--should always leave room for the development of originality and creativity among its members. I am merely stating in concrete terms the theological problem of institution versus charism. Spontaneous .4 ction Closely related to the need for originality and crea-tivity is the need for spontaneous action in community. A few years ago I read an examination of conscience in which was the question: "Have I organized myself so intensely that I have no time for spontaneous generos-ity?" We might well ask the question on the com-munal level. Is our day so laid out, charges so spelled out, that members function as automatons--cheerfully perhaps, but not spontaneously? Responsibility Finally, true community fosters responsibility, the ability to respond. Men and women can come to good-ness only through a knowing and free choice. The other side of the coin is a sharing in the authority on which responsibility depends; and this authority, in turn, is derived, from the community. Members are responsible to one another personally and to the group collectively. The religious or Spirit-filled community, therefore, is based on the agape-life of the Trinity as incarnated among men. Its growth and development depends upon the respect for the integrity of the individual person with the necessary correlatives of personal authenticity and acceptance. Desirable structures permit and foster originality, creativity, responsibility, and spontaneous action both individually and collectively. CURRENT TRENDS With these principles in mind we shall now attempt to describe the current trends among religious in Can-ada, trends which will affect community living. These trends were gleaned from the recent reports of the eight round-table discussion teams which were organized across Canada by the Canadian Religious Congress to contribute to a survey of religious life. In this era of post-Vatican II, we are coutinually reminded to be alert to the signs of the times, to significant indications or movements in a parti.cular direction. Whether the trend be evaluated as good or bad, as desirable or un-desirable, it remains, nevertheless, the voice of the Spirit speaking to us. Discernment of the message is not as easy as discernment of the trend. 4. ÷ Community Living VOLUME 27, 1968 811 Sister M. Den~s, $.0~. REVIEW FOR RELIGIOUS ,4 ttitudes Very evident is the evolution of new and more posi-tive attitudes among religious. In relation to the in-stitution, there is a greater respect for the person and the charisms of the individual. Religious place a priority of being over seeming, of the person over the actions. The false dichotomy between body and soul is diminished. A new appreciation for the "world" which has lost many of its former negative connotations is evidenced in an understanding of eschatology as be-ginning here below in the form of earthly happiness. Therefore, there is less stress on the'negative aspect of sacrifice and a grea~er emphasis on a joyful, more positive asceticism. Resurrection, not death is predomi-nant. There is a tendency to diminish the artificial distinction between the natural and the supernatural. Thus, the religious sees his or her dedication to Christ and to mankind as one. This unifying trend involves a rejection of the logical distinction between the transcend.- ent God and the immanent God, where the existential is concerned. Spirituality The incarnational spirituality that has evolved from these attitudes integrates human values and identifies "human experience" and the "experience of God." God is encountered .at work in the world present in and through human realities. Throughout the entire study there was evidence of a strong trend toward assuming a more personal responsi-bility for one's life of faith involving a renewed self-commitment. Thins desire for personal responsibility and the previously mentioned attitudes have strongly in-fluenced the trends in the prayer life of Canadian re, ligious today. In the search for new and authentic forms of prayer, none of the traditional forms have escaped honest scrutiny. Although religious believe in the necessity of prayer, the form or expression of this prayer is radically changing, primarily due to a new understanding of prayer in which there is no separation between prayer and action. Looking upon everything as prayer, especially encounter with others, was a very pronounced trend. Therefore, religious desire more freedom in their prayer life--with a structural minimum that gives more consideration to personal needs, that encourages authenticity, and that is adapted to the rhythm suited to the life each one is leading. The daily obligation for Mass is. questioned because of the need for' respecting the personal spiritual rhythm of the religious. In the celebration of the Eucharist, the re- ligious insist less on the idea of sacrifice and more on the notions of communion and gathering. There is an increased trend toward community encounter in the Eucharist within the parish community. Because of their strong faith in the value of interpersonal relationships and group accomplishment, the trends indicate the de-sire of religious for group reflection in prayer. Prayer is no longer a private matter but is becoming a means fulfilling the need for an expression of friendship and human support. The place of God in prayer is not thereby lessened, because of the identity of "human experience" and "the experience of God." The starting point of prayer--personal or communal --is likewise incarnational--an event, something con-nected with themselves, the needs of the world as re-vealed in continuing salvation history--more than the speculative knowledge of a transcendent God. Institution Religious from coast to coast are questioning--not theoretically but existentially--the meaning and purpose of religious life itself. The reports indicate, however, that this scrutiny is not negative, but positive--in spite of the front page articles in the NCR. Structures are not disregarded but desired if they help real personal commitment. Community of life, however, takes prece-dence over institution which is understood as something to help community of life, to make and keep its mem-bers more fully human persons. The institution is re-jected under certain aspects because of unfortunate ex-periences resulting from harshness, impersonalism, legal-ism, and paternalism. Rule Regarding the rule, the trend is toward getting away from the traditional rule because it no longer measures up to the needs of the time. Also evident is a lack of regard for unnecessary canonical legislation. Religious women, in particular, are resentful of the paternalism manifested toward them by the Sacred Congregation of Religious and in canon law. External Signs Also strong is the trend to reject archaic signs of identification as religious. These externals, such as the habit, the canonical cloister, the rule, community con-trols, are seen as objectionable to the extent that they separate the religious from the secular world. These religious wish to remove the barriers imposed by monastic influences of another age. ÷ ÷ ÷ Community Living VOLUME 27, 1968 813 Silence Closely connected to their notions on spirituality, prayer, and religious structures are the views of religious on silence. They admit the value of silence but not according to traditional concepts. Personal silence is valuable as a means to encountering the other; it is closely related to charity. Rather than an absence of words, silence is an inner attitude. Thus, they refuse to keep a conformist silence or silence of rule considered for its own sake. Size oI Community Especially strong are the desire and the realization of riving in small homogeneous groups because of the need for human interpersonal relationships, for authenticity, for the development of the person. In this way, religious desire to bear effective witness both to poverty and to service. Thus there is a trend toward experimen-tation in this more fraternal way of life: some are living in smaller groups; others are living in apartments. Secular World Today's religious desire to socialize more naturally wid~ other people. In fact, there is evidence of a trend toward seeking fraternity outside the usual religious community group. On the one hand, some see this trend as a reaction against an incorrectly understood type of ¯ community life; on the other hand, some see this as an overflow of the love that is established in true com-munity. Whatever be the case, we must attempt to read the signs of the times; if a person does not find accept-ance and human fellowship within the community, he will seek it elsewhere. Increased activity in the secular world is practically a fait accompli for most religious who are now reading contemporary books, going to movies, taking part in politics, and maintaining contact with the world of art and artists. 4- 4- 4- Sister M. Denis~ S.0.5. REVIEW FOR RELIGIOUS .4 uthority Religious admit that they will readily sh~re personal experiences with their fellow religious but less willingly with one who is in authority--a spiritual director or a superior. The authority figure in practice is not yet seen as a friend. Strongly rejecting paternalism, religious do not wish to be dependent upon a superior. Authority itself is not rejected; religious still see the necessity of someone in charge of the group. But this person--the superior--should be an available and approachable moderator--one among brothers. Authority is seen as service and coresponsibility. There is a trend, but not yet clearly defined, toward a concept of shared authority with joint responsibility in view of the good of the group. Because of the dignit