Vatican City (Agenzia Fides) - The annual International Congress of the Pontifical Urbaniana University is entitled "Multicultural communities for what formation?" and will be held at the university under the jurisdiction of the Congregation of "Propaganda Fide" from November 17 to 19, 2021. The Congress - which can be attended both in person (in accordance with anti-Covid19 regulations) and online, with simultaneous translation into multiple languages - will host researchers and academics from Australia, Belgium, Chile, Colombia, Germany, Ghana, India, Ireland, Italy, Mozambique, Spain and the United States.
"Diversity is always a little scary because it threatens the security we have acquired and calls into question the stability we have achieved. (...) Faced with cultural, ethnic, political and religious diversity, we can have two attitudes: to close ourselves in a rigid defense of our so-called identity or to open ourselves up to the encounter with the other and together cultivate the dream of a fraternal society", declared Pope Francis, during his Apostolic trip to Budapest, September 12, 2021.
Inspired by these words, the Congress intends to offer an analysis and possible understanding of what is happening in formation communities where both formators and those in formation come from different peoples, nations and cultures. This dynamic can be found today in pontifical universities, Catholic training institutes and training centers for consecrated life for men and women.
The Congress will present the results of socio-educational and anthropological research carried out from 2017 to today, by the Higher Institute of Catechesis and Missionary Spirituality, of the Pontifical Urbaniana University, in partnership with the International Union of General Superiors UISG, on "Multiculturality, formation and intercultural competence in Pontifical Universities and in formation for consecrated life". Broadening the discussion and debate during the study days, the Congress program focuses on the main issues revolving around the multiculturality of students and teachers and its impact on "content" and "models of training" offered in pontifical universities and in the formation of consecrated life.
"If multiculturality is a fact of our plural society and in particular of the formation circles of the Catholic Church - reads a note from the Urbaniana University sent to Fides - interculturality, mutual exchange and mutual transformation, remain a horizon looked at with curiosity or concern, an educational challenge which concerns first of all the formators and then the people in formation". Intercultural competences and interdisciplinary aptitudes are therefore "the future of the world educational pact, with a view to the participative construction of the integral man and of a society of sisters and brothers". The Congress can be attended free of charge and without reservation; it is possible to follow the works via Zoom thanks to a link which will be active from the morning of November 17th from 8:30 am (Rome time, IT), which can be found on the website of the Urbaniana University. After 6 hours, the Congress will be visible on YouTube.
(Agenzia Fides, 16/11/2021)