The theme of the 4th International Oblate Congress
What does it mean to be an oblate in the 21st Century? Formed by the Rule of St Benedict, what is our responsibility for our broken world? How can we act as peacemakers showing hospitality in the face of war, terrorism, refugee crises and religious fanaticism? How can we serve as stewards of an abused planet as challenged and inspired by Pope Francis and his encyclical “Laudato Si”? How can we experience stability when monastic communities are shrinking and disappearing? How can we live a life of silence, contemplation and simplicity surrounded by chaos, idolized entertainment, digital noise and consumerism? How can we as oblates create and contribute to communities around us - in our oblate groups and chapters, in our families and neighborhoods, in our workplaces and in society as a whole (and even, in our own monasteries of oblation)?
The Fourth International Oblate Congress, to be held in Rome in autumn 2017, invites participants who want to take an active role in facing these challenges, to share their stories, to work and volunteer, and to search for answers. We are looking for participants who want to carry their newly gained knowledge back home to become change agents in their own communities – together finding a new way forward.