Good Shepherd Lay Empowerment Program at Chanthagone, Mandalay

“Empowerment Seminar for lay mission partners” was held in Chanthagone, Mandalay from 16 to 19 March, 2019. Twenty five Good Shepherd lay staff from different parts Myanmar participated. Lay formation being one of our priorities, this is our second year to organize seminar such a seminar in order to provide them formation for the mission effectiveness.
The first day began with introducing one another followed by the sharing of Sr. Magdalene on the history of the Congregation. They were deeply touched by the original inspiration of our congregation.

On the second day morning, Fr. Cyril Myint Soe shared about the effective personal leadership which helped them reflect on their own leadership style in the mission. Being a spiritual man, he inspired them from his own experiences. In the afternoon, Sr. Olivia helped them to grow in self-knowledge by helping them to go deeper into their inner journey.

The third day started with the sharing of Sr. Marcinda on the values of GS followed by the reflection and group sharing where they affirmed the values they hold as they carried out their ministries with vulnerable women and children. In the afternoon, interfaith experts Fr. Mark Tin Win and Sr. Kathleen Geaney, MSSC were invited to share “engaging interfaith dialogue in Myanmar context.” This topic helped them realized the importance of learning from people of different faiths and living in peace and harmony with all.

On that last day, Sr. Kevin presented the history of lay mission partners tracing from the time of St. John Eudes until the present day. The history helped them reflect on their involvement in GS mission together with the Sisters.

The seminar concluded with the evaluation of four day activities. All of them expressed that they are happy with the topics given and the resource persons, feel comfortable with one another and their relationships deepened. Group sharing and listening to one another enriched them as well. Some of them affirmed their deeper understanding on the essentials in life of GS lay partners: listening, dialogue, to be rooted in personal values and respect the values of others and the beauty of different religions and ethnics. Many of them expressed their deep appreciation and said that they gained more confidence through this seminar and hope to have more lay formation sessions like this in the future.