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The University Pastoral of Higher Level Scholastic Institutions (IES) of Our Lady of Penha Brazilian Province (BRJ) participated in the 3rd Course for University Pastoral workers promoted by the National Bishops Conference of Brazil (CNBB).

The national event was coordinated by the Assessor Fr. Danilo Pinto and by the Archdiocesan University Pastoral Team of St. Sebastian of Rio de Janeiro. The participants in the course came from various regions of the Country. There were Lecturers, university students, priests, and deacons who gathered together to pray, reflect, share experiences, evaluate the journey made, and also reflect on the situation of University Pastoral in Brazil.

Highlighted was the message of the Bishop, President of the Commission, who had asked us to share experiences and, in accord with the orientations of Pope Francis, stimulated University Pastoral to be an outgoing Church and more daring. The Archbishop of Rio de Janeiro, Fr. Orani Tempesta, added that university pastoral is a frontier pastoral and made us note the need for dialog between the Church and the university environment.

Our Lady of Penha Province (BRJ) participated with representatives from two Higher Scholastic Institutions, ISECENSA (Higher Scholastic Institutions of Mary Help of Christians Educational Center - Campos dos Goytacazes) and FSMA (Mary Help of Christians Salesian Faculty - Macaé). Representing ISECENSA were Paula Máecia Seabra de Souza and Juliana Garcia Botacini; while for FSMA there were Gabriel Augusto Sousa and André Rodrigues Pereira who shared the experiences of university pastoral carried out in the two Higher Level Institutions.

The themes dealt with during the course were: "The actual scenario of Higher Level instruction in Brazil: tendencies and challenges", presented by Rodrigo Felix, Lecturer of the State university of Zona Oeste; "The three axes of University Pastoral, Global vision" presented by the Lecturer Humberto Contreras, of Padre João Bagozzi Faculty. Another theme presented by the Lecturer Contreras referred to the "Elements of Laudato Si for evangelizing action at the university level", a way to confront the question of formation in the university environment.

Fr. Danilo Pinto, of CNBB, presented the argument, "Pastoral Methodology by Departments: IES, Dioceses and Regions, Workshop of project possibilities", highlighting the question of the synod aspect of University Pastoral in relation to the Church through the parishes, dioceses, and regions. Evidenced was the fact that University Pastoral is not in competition with the parishes. They are different environments, and as a consequence, use different methods of pastoral action.

In representing the Pontifical University of Rio de Janeiro (PUC-Rio), Dom Valdecir Gonzaga spoke of "Mercy and evangelizing action in the University environment". He said that university pastoral must be 'open to dialog', and make us reflect on the greatness of God's mercy.
Times of prayer in groups and Eucharistic celebrations were opportunities for spirituality and listening to the Word of God and of sharing bread.

Through this encounter, the participants became aware that, notwithstanding the difficulties, the journey is being made. Both ISECENSA and FSMA recognize that their pastoral actions are in synergy with the guidelines of CNBB.

The creation of social network groups is a sign of the desire to continue to work together. The participants continued reflection, sharing of information and formation in groups. ISECENSA and FSMA, together and in communion with CNBB, were re-motivated to respond to the call of the Church of the university world that is also the identity of the Salesian Institutions.

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  • IVONE Goulart Lopes12/5/2016 11:00:00 PMFico feliz e parabenizo as Instituicoes de Ensino Superior da Inspetoria do Rio de Janeiro por participarem desse evento. Neste perí­odo do advento faço esta prece: “Ensina-me a criar “horizontes de dentro. Ensina-me a ultrapassar a cercadura do tempo”, do livro: “Coisas Caladas” escrito por uma irmã que doou grande parte de sua vida as instituiçíµes superiores no Instituto, Ir. Olga de Sá/SP.
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