Fr. Jim Noonan pointed out that in the animal kingdom, survival is not always to the strongest or largest or most powerful, but rather to those species that are able to adapt. In the Spirit of Vatican II he challenged Maryknoll to "read the signs of the times."
He called for new "Montreal moment" to inspire the next 100 years. He pointed out that 80% of religious congregations do not make it to the 100-year mark. Each member can do something to renew the Society. The Church, being so large, will survive but in a different form than what we have been accustomed to. So it will be with Maryknoll. The Mission of God will continue, but in ways very different than what we experienced.
This final session ended with observations from the men. It is my observation that optimism and vision and enthusiasm for mission are not restricted to the "younger" members. Some elders had dreams for the future far greater than the common wisdom that says there is no interest in refounding. Jim called all Maryknollers co-founders of Maryknoll in the next century.
My personal reflection on Maryknoll's reFOUNDing will appear soon .(Thanks to Jim Kroeger for catching this important difference! Would that there is also refunding of SOAW in the future!