On Friday 20 March, 2015 Joe McCarthy and I worked with our REMAR Coordinators as together we considered Marist Identity and the new Marist Association. The Coordinators came from REMAR schools across the Marist Province of Australia.
In considering Marist identity we chose five themes which seemed to us to profile our understanding of what it means to be Marist today. They are:
1. We have an affection for Marcellin Champagnat and how he lived his Marist life in France in the early part of the 19th century.
2. We experience a strong spirituality based on the example of Mary in the way she nurtured Jesus 2000 years ago.
3. Marists have characteristic virtues which are easily recognised and which can be summarised by considering an authentic family spirit such as that of the holy family at Nazareth.
4. We operate within workable structures which enable communal development in our Marist enterprise and support our participation in Church and society.
5. Marists undertake their work of evangelising with passion. This mission involves education, social work and diverse international activity.
These five themes: Marcellin Champagnat, Spirituality, Characteristic Virtues, Structures and Mission seemed to us to capture key elements of the nature of Marist identity today.