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Psychology and Formation, a reflection on Vatican Document

psycholgy and formationPsychology and Formation

Reflections in the light of the Vatican Document, “Guidelines for use of psychology in the admission and formation of candidates for the priesthood”

By J.M. Joseph Jeyaseelan, CMF, Claretian Philosophate, Jaffna, Sri Lanka

 The Vatican Congregation for Catholic Education released a document with the above-mentioned title on the 30th of October 2008, signed by its prefect, Zenon Cardinal Grocholewski. I am writing these reflections over three years after its release with the belief that they will be of help to all who are involved in the area of formation—directors, candidates, and others who are in one way or another involved—know the document better and use the Vatican guidelines responsibly.

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Spiritual Direction

spiritual directionSPIRITUAL DIRECTION

 Spiritual direction is accompanying others on their faith journey. The primary focus of spiritual direction is on a person’s relationship with God. It helps another person primarily in becoming more open to the inspiration of the Holy Spirit in the ordinary events and circumstances of life. In spiritual direction a person is invited to continual conversion and towards a deepening union with God and communion with others.

            For some, the term “spiritual direction” is problematic. For them, spiritual means “other-worldly” or “disengaged from real life”. Direction means somebody telling you what to do to the extent of giving up one’s freedom and responsibility.

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Appreciative Inquiry applied to Formation-1

formator under the crossAn Appreciative Paradigm

Fr. James Kannanthanam cmf

What we find depends on what we look for. Is that not commonsense understanding? Two things are, then, very important. One thing is our mindset. Do we have mindset which is attuned to the good that is around us? It is proverbial that a pessimist finds the half empty glass and an optimist half full looking at the same reality. Pessimists expect the worst and see the worst in all things. The optimist’s mindset helps him to perceive the good things happening in a situation. The pessimist is attuned to pick up the negatives! As formators do we have an ‘appreciative-eye’ to look for the good things already there in the formees?

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What is your formative Approach?

formators perspectiveProgram-centered or formandus-centered?

The science of education has undergone revolutionary changes in the recent years with the advancement of various disciplines and changes of perspectives in education. As formation involves transformation of the whole person, advancement in other disciplines offer insights and instruments to help the integral formation of missionaries.

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School of Mary

Institutes of Consecrated Life links