Question One: WHAT IT IS?
The Province Formation Team is appointed by the Province
Leadership Team of Holy Spirit Province and commissioned to
help further the understanding and appreciation of the Gospel
of Jesus and the charism of Edmund Rice amongst those in the
Edmund Rice Network. Since the launch of the Province document
"Christian Brother schools: A vision for the future"
in 1993 via all school conference gatherings, this task has
been carried out by the Province Resource Team based at Westcourt
in WA. Over the years a number of Christian Brothers have
served as members of this Resource Team providing intellectual,
spiritual and personal enrichment for staffs in schools and
members of the wider network of ministries and groups. So
in reality the Province Formation Team and its accompanying
mandate have emerged from the foundational roots established
by the Province Resource Team.
Question Two: WHO IS IT?
A significant difference from the Resource Team is that the
Formation Team is currently made up of both Christian Brothers
and lay people. Brs Gerry Faulkner and Terry Casey, together
with Richard Mavros, work out of the Westcourt offices in
WA. There the Team's Administration Assistant Gay Jones keeps
a careful eye on what these three get up to. Br John Webb,
who divides his time between Formation and Vocations responsibilities,
and Mark McGlaughlin are based in Adelaide and work from offices
at Thebarton. Here is a brief personal profile on each of
the team members...
Team: (from left) Richard Mavros, Gay Jones, Mark McGlaughlin,
Br Terry Casey, Br Gerry Faulkner
[See photo of the sixth member of the team, Br John Webb,
Richard is a trained primary school teacher who, over the
last fifteen years, has particularly focused on working with
youth at risk. After a time with the Sisters of the Good Shepherd
supporting women and children in need, Richard has spent the
last six years full time with the Edmund Rice Camps for Kids
WA Inc. developing supportive relationships with young adults
and providing relevant opportunities for formative skill development,
growth and reflection. He is passionate about issues of social
justice and the role that Edmund Rice inspired ministries
can play in our society.
GERRY: Br Gerry's background lies in secondary education:
teaching, adult religious education with parents, staff development
and formation. He has a special interest in down-to-earth
practical theology, the meaning of the Gospels for the world
of today, and the overcoming of artificial distinctions between
the spiritual and the secular. As a former Province Leader,
Gerry brings to the team a great depth of understanding of
the Edmund Rice spirit and vision and an appreciation that
formation endeavours need to be situated within the context
of peoples' own lives.
Mark has spent seventeen of his twenty five years in Catholic
Education within Christian Brother schools. As a Religious
Education Coordinator he gained experience facilitating Retreats
and Faith Enrichment programs. His adult education experiences
include work as a Diocesan Marriage Educator, Baptismal program
facilitator and workshop presenter. Married to Krina and with
a 12 year old son, Luke, Mark's passion for the vision of
Edmund and the work of the Christian Brothers has been fuelled
by his own formation experiences in Ireland in 1998 and Zambia
TERRY: Terry has had much contact with youth on Edmund Rice
Camps and other formation programs in the wider Edmund Rice
Network. He has invested a strong interest in exploring how
ecology and theology weave through our spirituality and can
be deepened through retreats and other reflective practices.
He is a keen bushwalker and ardent naturalist.
Gay is married (nearly 30 years) with two children, and has
worked for the Province Resource Team (now Formation Team)
since 2000. Having previously lived in a small country town,
she moved to Perth to take up her current position. Half her
work time is taken up by the Formation Team and the rest is
with the Finance department. She is usually the first point
of call for information about Formation programs and other
JOHN: John's work in the Adelaide office covers two areas.
The first role is in the vocations area and in this he helps
out on school camps and accompanies people who may be interested
in joining religious life. Part of this work is with the Vocations
Network of SA. In the second area, John contributes to running
formation programs for the Edmund Rice Network: school staffs,
the Edmund Rice Associates and Edmund Rice Camp volunteers.
Question Three: WHAT IS
at a formation program
The team describes its ministry as one of accompaniment.
We believe that in this time of unprecedented change, all
of us who make up the Edmund Rice Network need to take time
to reflect on the meaning of Jesus and Edmund for our contemporary
world. Our task as a team is to journey with Network members,
but particularly those who are new or those who are unclear
as to their role or place within the Network, toward an ever
clearer discovery of our personal being and our sense of Christian
purpose. We believe that a lack of clear vision results only
in uncertainty, confusion and frustration. Ultimately our
task is to try to give some sense of meaning to that vision.
Question Four: HOW IS IT
of the first 2005 EIRWAYS program designed for staff
new to ER ministries
We aim to highlight the Edmund story in the context of contemporary
reflection on the Gospel of Jesus, and the challenge this
presents for each individual to develop their gifts in the
service of their world. Our services are available to any
ministry or group within the Edmund Rice Network who wishes
to spend some time developing their understanding of Edmund's
interpretation of the Gospel challenge and what this means
for us today. At the formal level we facilitate workshop programs,
staff inservice training, retreat experiences, renewal opportunities
and induction programs across a broad spectrum of the Edmund
We know that personal formation is most likely to happen when
each individual senses that they are part of an environment
where genuine care and respect is being demonstrated for the
stage of faith and understanding that they are currently at.
Our work is very much in partnership with those who exercise
leadership responsibilities within the different Edmund Rice
ministries and groups. We cannot function without their support
and their own commitment to the value of formation processes.
Question Five: IS THERE
ANYTHING FOR ME?
If you are an employee of an Edmund Rice ministry you should
speak to your ministry Leader about the range and appropriateness
of programs on offer. As well as the Province based experiences
there are also national and international opportunities available
throughout the year. Some significant programs which are scheduled
for the coming months include:
May 19th and 20th (WA)
August 11th and 12th (WA)
November 17th and 18th (SA)
TOWARD A THEOLOGY OF
RESPECT: a program designed for ministry
personnel who have completed at least 6 years
July 15th -17th (SA)
August 26th- 28th (WA)
EDMUND RICE NETWORK
a program available to all
July 25th (SA)
October 10th (WA)
EDMUND RICE JUSTICE
A one day focus on Justice issues
August 2nd and 3rd
September 6th and 7th (SA)
JUSTICE AND PEACE EVENING
WORKSHOPS FOR YOUNG ADULTS:
A series of sessions focusing on justice and peace
If you don't see any thing
here that fits you or your ministries circumstances
ring Gay and see if we can offer you something
Question Six: HOW ARE PEOPLE
The team always likes to think that they are achieving their
aims. However like a chef who prepares a gourmet feast the
only judges that matter are the ones who taste the goodies
on offer. So perhaps we should let the comments speak for
"I really liked the intimacy of working
with the small group of Executive Team members. I have had
some very affirming feedback about what we did from the Executive
[Principal following a College
Executive team workshop]
"I don't feel as daunted by a Secondary
School Board now"
"I appreciate having a reading package to take away with
"Despite being apprehensive at start I thoroughly enjoyed
all aspects of the day as personal, communal and enabling
challenge and growth"
"Challenging without being overwhelming"
"Reminded me how important it is to know the why before
worrying about the what and how"
[Induction workshop for
new Board members of Edmund Rice Ministries]
"The highlight was the prayerful atmosphere
"Great to spend time focusing on leadership in the Edmund
"The chance to be with other leaders and share wisdom
comments from Leadership Teams gathering at start of year]
"The induction had considerable impact
and it made me realize how relevant Edmund's radical vision
is within the current conservative educational setting"
"A great chance to re-affirm the things I value in education"
"Great to get some quiet reflection time rarely
available in professional development settings"
"The most rewarding professional development I've ever
"Great to have the chance to focus on our spiritual side"
"Thank you for the chance to pause and ponder and appreciate
the specialness and sacredness of our being"
[Feedback from EIRWAYS (new
staff induction) program SA and WA]
A group from the
Aquinas leadership team discuss matters at a workshop for
members of the College Executive Team in March)