INTERNATIONAL WORKSHOP EXPLORES IDENTITY AND THE PATH TOWARD THE FUL LNESS OF LIFE.
WRITTEN BY SR. AGNES NJOKI NJERU
We were most grateful to our Leadership Team for empowering us with an opportunity this summer for Sisters Symphonie Giao-Huong Ngoc Ngo, Kim Xuan Thi Nguyen, Maurine Chemnung Pangale, and myself to participate in an online learning program regarding vocation ministry. It was an opportunity for us to learn more about ourselves and others.
Through four online workshops, we became more appreciative of those who have and continue to journey with us in formation. Not only did we gain knowledge about ourselves but also the skills to better ourselves, relate with others, and accompany others in our journey to be fully alive.
The week of July 7-22, we joined many other participants from the USA, Canada, Fiji, Nigeria, Tanzania, Ghana, Italy, and Ireland for the program. The first workshop was an orientation program to the Vocation Ministry. We were blessed in particular to share our vocation stories with each other and to see how God has been leading us to take steps in doing His will.
In the second workshop, we explored Ethical Issues for Ministry: Key highlight in this topic was the importance of a code of ethics in any ministry that we undertake. Emphasis was placed on ethical values and principles governing the role of agency, boundaries, and the position of authority. As professional ministers in any ministry, we are invited to practice confidentiality, maintain healthy boundaries, and due diligence in relation to the rights and responsibilities of those to whom we are ministering.
Our third workshop covered the question: Is it Generational, Cultural, Personality or Pathology? We learned the different dimensions of identity including personal and cultural aspects. This was an important topic for us as we live in the ever-growing diversity of the Church and our world, which continues to provide us with increasing opportunities for cross-cultural engagement. We were reminded of the need to engage in conversations that can help us understand those who are “different” from ourselves in terms of culture and personality rather than living with our stereotypes, prejudices, or being judgmental of others.
The fourth workshop covered: Understanding, Assessing and Fostering Psycho Sexual Integration. We addressed the topic of Being Human, including pertinent issues regarding the question of diversity in being human, use of technology, boundaries, and self-awareness. All of these areas of learning pointed out to us of what we have been, who we are today, and what we hope to become. We are aware that becoming fully human is a life-time project. Each day is a learning moment and a growing opportunity.