July 1, 2018
June 18-21 the Dominican friars of the Western Province gathered in an assembly to help us prepare for our Provincial chapter that will occur in January, 2019. I will be attending because I am prior of our Dominican community, and another delegate will be elected from our regional college, which is comprised of the priory here in LA and our community in Mexicali, Mexico.
Much of our time together was spent with a facilitator, Mr. Jim Lundholm-Eades, Director of Program and Services for the National Leadership Roundtable on Church Management. He has written extensively on strategic planning and the discernment of God’s will for Catholic church groups. Both the Western Province and our own Parish Pastoral Council are using his methods for strategic planning.
In small groups and plenary discussions we identified what influences the way we minister, both locally and Province-wide. We also talked about what is missing in our common life that interferes in evangelization and our desire to preach on the “frontiers” identified by the Dominican Order.
Two themes emerged from our assembly that energized the brothers and that had nearly universal support: 1) we are committed to evangelization, because we see many people leaving the Church and recognize the growing hostility to faith in our culture and 2) we want to strengthen our religious life: common prayer and life together in which we follow the constitutions which defines our life.
The friars will be at the house of prayer for priests July 9-11 to discuss our life and ministry together at St. Dominic’s in light of our assembly discussions. Masses will be covered by Fr. Ambrose Sigman, OP, a visiting Dominican from Rome.