[RivCompanions] Formation Assistance

Virginia Brown mothervirginiadb at gmail.com
Thu Jun 20 21:01:00 UTC 2013

Thank you so much, Noel, for taking this on.  I would be glad to help with
any of the sections--although it may be more worthwhile for Texas
postulants to have connections with other members of the community if I'll
have the opportunity to meet with them there.

One thought which has occurred to me is that it might be especially
appropriate for us to draw on some of section B when I'm there - I'm
thinking of the aspect of sharing our stories, which is such a significant
part of drawing together a community.

I'll send some thoughts about the reading lists.  It's hard to know when to
stop and how much to include, so that a "suggested" category is helpful!
If we all contribute, say, three to five suggestions (anticipating several
duplications, no doubt) we'll probably end up with a more comprehensive

Love to all.  By the way, thank you all for keeping my sister Mary in your
prayers.  I just found out that she's scheduled for surgery on July 2, so
it will now be easier for me to make plans about travel.


On Thu, Jun 20, 2013 at 3:20 PM, Noel Schwartz <nschwrtz at aol.com> wrote:

> As we discussed at General Chapter, the formation process for current
> postulants who all are in Texas will be a bit different from the past
> where we may have had a one-on-one relationship with companion and
> posutlant working through the study guide together.  I am beginning to
> formulate some ideas and am certainly open to your suggestions and feedback
> to what will be proposed.  For now, what I would love to have (even if
> you've already told me or submitted information last year) are the
> following:
> 1. Which unit(s) in the Study Guide would you like to work on with
> postulants.....
>  A - Rhythms of Sacred Time and the Daily Office
> B - Our Story and The Story: The Rivendell Motif and the Journey
> C - Eucharistic Living
> D - Deepening Our Life of Prayer
> E - Hospitality and Community
> F - Central Intentions
>  2. What readings (books) outside the Study Guide do you feel are
> "mandatory" reading for community membership.....sort these by Unit.
> 3. What readings were especially instrumental in your formation that you
> would also recommend but not "require"....also by Unit or if not related to
> a particular unit....just list "general".....I am realizing that the volume
> of these is excessive for me, so a representative group is fine.
> *Please do this within the next week.*  We would love to have a process
> outlined prior to Virginia's visit to Texas the first week of August. Send
> your response to "reply all" to this list so we are all in the loop.
> Am assuming that the first discussion topics with postulants are going to
> revolve around the logistics of their gatherings to begin community
> formation and the Goals for Formation as are described in the Postulancy,
> Novitiate and Profession Appendices A and B (which may require some
> updating) and the Vision and Mission of the Rivendell Community (Appendix
> C).
> If you hear from me more than you want to as I brainstorm about our new
> challenge and opportunity, I am sorry, but it would really be great if we
> could do this together.  I feel a bit inadequate to tackle this, but
> knowing your strengths and trusting God to be there with us, I am forging
> ahead.  I am including Michael and David in this communication (and hoping
> that the Rivendell Companions list serve is up to date) because they have
> the most recent experience with Study Guide formation and will have some
> insights from their perspective that will be very helpful.
> It is so amazing to be involved with the beginnings of St. Macarius
> Community here and to listen to their experiences and their planning and to
> feel every now and then that I might have a perspective that would be
> helpful to them.  They keep us in their prayers as I hope you will them.
> Virginia, if there are any changes in the Study Guide that I might not
> have, would you send me a new one.  I should have thought of this while I
> was there.
> Many blessings and much love,
> Noel
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