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On 30 December 2013, the confrères of the General Delegation of Portugal, met in Fatima for their traditional Christmas Assembly. It was also to share their experiences, to rediscover and strengthen the fraternal bonds which are the characteristics of our community life.
We had the participation of all the confrères of the Delegation, except Father Luís Oliveira who is a missionary in Brazil and Fr. Delfim Teixeira, on training programme in Canada. In the evening, Father Tavares Amilcar has honoured us with his visit, and then he left us in the night for Brazil. We were also honoured with the presence of Fr. Luigi Gritti, representing the General Administration at the meeting.
The meeting began with the welcoming words of our Delegation Superior Fr Carlos Manso. It was followed by the prayer of the Lauds. Soon after there was the address of Father Delegate, making reference to the Apostolic Exhortation "Gaudium Evangellii " of Pope Francis. He took the document as a challenge for evangelization, not only in the perspective of the proposals made by the Holy Father, but also in the perspective where we can fit into the particular nature of the Montfort mission.
After a short pause, Father Luigi Gritti, based on the resolutions of the General Chapter, presented the project of the Congregation for the Protection of Children and Vulnerable Adults. Father Luigi gave a general and international view of the situation, and told us what to do when one learns and becomes aware of the reality of this issue, both in the communities where we live, or even in the communities in which we carry on our missionary activity.
After lunch, the afternoon session began with the recitation of the None, but this time in Italian. Thereafter, we heard Father Luis Martinho, who shared with us about the experience and model of popular missions followed in Italy, which he himself participated for one year. He gave us to understand the dynamics and movement of popular missions and he showed us how they changed over the years.
After a short break, we had the intervention of Father Valerio Rui, who, on behalf of the delegation, introduced us to the programme of activities of the delegation and, finally, in a brief statement, Father Luis Ferreira, director and treasurer of the delegation, presented us the economic situation of the delegation.
We concluded our meeting with the celebration of the Eucharist and Vespers in the new chapel of the house in Fatima. The celebration was presided by Fr Luigi Gritti and shared by all with a lively and fervent faith.