82. In the formation itinerary
there are three stages: discovery, assimilation, and deepening. These correspond to the stages recognized by the educational praxis of the Church in the field of consecrated
life: initial welcome of Candidates, postulancy, novitiate, scholasticate, permanent formation.
itinerary the candidate, with his individual personality, will allow himself to
be involved in the process of
gradual assumption of the evangelical form of life as it was incarnated by the Founder and as
it is interpreted by our Order throughout history.
Called "to follow Christ
with greater liberty and to imitate him more closely” (Second Vatican
Council, Perfectae Caritatis (PC), 1)., we learn how to be his disciples, committed to a Christ-like existence, which embraces the man as he strives for
the full transfiguration of his being, listening and action.
The origin of each disciple's
call is the gratuitous, personal, and unique love of God the Father who calls
us to a covenant with Him in Christ. The disciple, receptive to the Holy Spirit,
responds to this covenant with love. "Only this love, which is of a
nuptial character and engages all the
affectivity of one's person, can motivate and support the renunciations and
crosses which one who wishes 'to lose his life' necessarily encounters for
Christ and for the Gospel (cf Mk 8:35). This personal response is an
integrating part of religious consecration". ( PI, 9)
It is in this context that we can
take into consideration the discipline which is required by any formation.
83. The formation we wish for
those who want to embrace the Bamabite way of life must be characterized by:
a) totality - harmoniously
developing all the dimensions of the person;
b) graduality - spreading out
the education goals of the various stages of initial and permanent formation;
c) interiorization - integrating the
exterior rule in one's daily living;
d) self-education - allowing the
candidate to experience himself as the agent of his own formation, which takes account of
the characteristics and needs of each individual candidate;
communication in faith and fraternal sharing of thoughts and action in an
authentic family spirit;
f) pluralism - in a Pauline sense,
inserting oneself positively into the various environments and diverse cultures, testing
everything and retaining what is good (1 Thess 5:21);
g) interior freedom
being bound to any school of thought, system or author, but allowing itself to be guided by
the Holy Spirit who guides to the fullness of truth (Const 3,5);
h) supernatural spirit, -
thinking over and reliving everything in the light of God the Father, his Word made flesh, and
ofthe interior movements of his Spirit.
84. The candidates are at the
center of all the stages of formation and therefore must be considered at the human level
primarily responsible for and co-protagonists of their own education according to the
specific tradition of our Order. They must be enabled to express themselves concerning the
objectives and programs of formation because alive in them is the need to participate and to
experiment. This will increase in them the sense of responsibility in an attitude of
constant evaluation (Cf.
Unification and Openness
85. The whole formation process
should aim at preparing "personalities inwardly unified 'in the love and desire for whole and
total perfection'" (Const 139) and therefore open to the service of neighbor.
a) growth in the human,
Christian, and religious virtues which lead to the knowledge, acceptance, and overcoming of
oneself, to psycho-affective balance, to self-education, and to self-discipline;
b) progressive socialization and
insertion in the religious, ecclesial, and civil community;
c) the attitude of maintaining
responsibly and faithfully the commitments one has assumed;
d) the capacity to relate in a
positive way to the members of the community and to the formators;
e) the creativity and the
enterprising spirit to root the charism in lived experience and to inculturate it into one's own
In the Path of
86. There is a need to stir up in
the one who is initiated into the life of the Congregation a sense of belonging and continuity. This
will enable him to absorb and then transmit the cultural and spiritual heritage that he
has received. For this purpose it is of primary importance for him to master the history and
spirituality of the Congregation and of its Pauline matrix, because it will enable him to
discover his roots and so draw from it the vital sap.
Times and Ways
of the Formation Process
87. The formation to the life of
the Congregation must be inspired by the ideal proposed by our Founding Father. Diversified,
instead, are the times and ways of the formation process depending on whether the
candidate is being formed for the priesthood or the brotherhood, his age, his character, his
education, and the aims of his activities.
88. The Bamabite educator
considers the whole person, totally forgetting himself, with a loving, persuasive, and discreet
attitude toward the other:
a) He respects in the candidate
what God himself respects: autonomy and individuality;
b) He stimulates his potential toward
the full maturation of his personality in the light of the Holy Spirit;
c) He creates between himself and
the disciple a serene and trustful attitude marked by vigilance in attitudes, integrity
in feelings and affections, and a natural distinction of methods.
Taken from "The BArnabite RATIO BARNABITICA. For Vocation Promotion and Formation"