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The Process of Formation of Religious Members in the Church

A Case Study of the Institute of the Blessed Virgin Mary

Marren Rose A. Awiti IBVM

The Process of Formation of Religious Members in the Church: A Case Study of the Institute of the Blessed Virgin Mary offers comprehensive and detailed information on the norms and teachings of the Church regarding the concept of formation. This book undertakes a case study of the IBVM, detailing both the unique and standard aspects of their program. It will be a valuable resource for the commission entrusted with the work of revising the law of the Church.

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Chapter One: Formation During the Period of Temporary Vows in Religious Institutes in the Canonical Tradition

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CHAPTER ONE

Formation During the Period of Temporary Vows in Religious Institutes in the Canonical Tradition

 

Introduction

Formation in the understanding of the Church is a process of training and preparing certain persons to assume specific roles, status, and offices. It is a practice as old as the Church itself. In the Gospels, there are references to Jesus training his disciples for their work of evangelization. He involved them in his ministry (Mt 14:12–21) and sent them on missions (Lk 10:1–23). Jesus also prepared his disciples for the challenges of discipleship (Jn 15:18–27, 16:1–3; Lk 12:12). He instructed them on the vigilance and faithfulness required of their life and ministry (Lk 12:35–47, 17:7–10). Jesus taught his disciples by word and deed (Jn 13:1–17). He taught them how to pray (Mt 6:5–15; Lk 11:1–11); He taught them about forgiveness (Mt 18:15–22); and about the attitude of discipleship (Mt 5:1–17).

The early Christian community initiated the new converts before baptizing them (Acts 8: 26–40). With the growth and evolution of the Church, various functions, roles, and offices emerged which required specific formation (1 Tim 3). Formation was always characterized by some form of apprenticeship, testing, and assessment. The Church has always deemed it necessary to scrutinize for suitability the persons who assumed a certain...

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