GERMANY, from Martin Schiffl •
The communications lecturers of the Academy for Family Pedagogy met last weekend in Memholz. This was the summer meeting, which has meanwhile become a tradition, and has been taking place for fifteen years. What began as a small group with representatives from Germany and Austria has grown to become an international meeting with communications lecturers from Lithuania, the Czech Republic, Croatia, Spain, Hungary, Brazil, Germany, Switzerland and Austria. Although it was not possible for everyone to be there, it was nevertheless a large, multi-language group that exchanged their experiences and best practices in the academies in their countries.
Pedagogy of trust
Fr Leonhard Erhard gave the keynote address on Fr Kentenich’s pedagogy of trust. In the face of terrorism and the killing spree in Munich, trust is an essential spiritual power that reduces fear in people. When we looked at Fr Kentenich, who even in the concentration camp revealed so much inner calm that he was able to give others strength, we saw how important it is to build up trust through the educational process. Through our trust in the merciful Father, and our trust in the ability to grow, we strengthen the participants and in this way have an educational and formative effect.
Other countries have answers to questions while in our own country we are still uncertain
Much time was spent on looking for answers to the questions of the conference participants. The international orientation made this work easier. “Other times, other manners” also often means that other countries have found answers to questions while in our country we are still uncertain.
In Memholz the fiftieth anniversary of the laying of the foundation stone by Fr Kentenich is being commemorated. At that time he said that from here Schoenstatt would reach the whole world. At this international meeting of the Academy for Family Pedagogy Fr Kentenich’s statement was clearly confirmed. The date for next year’s meeting is already settled – because we trust in the effectiveness of Fr Kentenich’s pedagogy for our present time.
Eva and Erich Berger, Austria
Original: German. Translation: Mary Cole, Manchester, UK