From the 5th to the 10th of November, 2017, the Second International Congress of Carmelite Schools took place in Rome. The congress was organised by the General Commission for this area under the presidency of Fr. Raúl Maraví Cabrera, O.Carm. The first congress took place in Dublin in 2010, to mark the 150th anniversary of the founding of the first Carmelite college in modern times, namely, Terenure College. At this second congress the seventy participants from the five continents stayed at the Domus Carmelitana and in the international houses of our Order in Rome. They included many lay people and a number of religious sisters from different Carmelite congregations.
The title of this congress was, "Carmel, a life of fullness and beauty". The speakers (Anne-Maríe Bos, Albertus Herwanta, Kate McGarey-Vasey, Richard Byrne, John Haggerty and Eduardo Agosta Scarel) illustrated, from a number of points of view, the possibility of handing on specific Carmelite values (contemplation, reflection, day to day spirituality, and Carmelite ecology) to the children and young people who attend our colleges and schools. What they said was studied in language groups and then discussed further in a plenary session. As well as that participants shared a variety of materials that they brought from their respective locations, such as audio/visuals, books, and means of advertising.
On Wednesday, the 8th, the participants all went to the audience with Pope Francis in St. Peter's Square. On the 9th the congress closed, with a celebration of the Eucharist led by the Prior General, Fernando Millán Romeral, O.Carm., who, in his homily, emphasised the importance of the teaching apostolate which is so much part of the lives of many of the provinces of the Order. He encouraged the participants to continue in their reflection on this wonderful area of evangelisation and humanisation, with creativity and generosity.