‘Coffee-shop’ on good governance
The ‘Coffee-shop’ aimed at facilitating the forthcoming CRI national consultation scheduled Nov 3-6
The Conference of Religious India (CRI) envisions a huge shift in the way of administration of religious congregations in the light of emerging trends in civil society using principles of good governance.
Taking a cue from a café billboard caption that “a lot can happen over a cup of coffee,” the CRI secretariat has set in motion consultations stimulated by coffee on good governance in its congregations.
The first ever ‘Coffee-shop’ was held on Sept 26 at CRI house, Delhi, with a small gathering of six major superiors from in and around the capital and four members of CRI house.
Those present were Fathers Edward and Michael, Brothers Laurence Abraham and Placid and Sisters Irene and Bhavya.
The ‘Coffee-shop’ aimed at facilitating the forthcoming CRI national consultation scheduled Nov 3-6.
In keeping with the times, Religious congregations in India are stressing upon good governance like participatory approach in decision-making, accountability and transparency.
Sr. Irene of Medical Mission Sisters said, “the world moves on, so we cannot afford to remain stagnant and motionless. We too should move on.”
“Accountability is a two-way process where both the leaders and the members assume responsibility,” opined Jesuit Fr. Edward.
Br. Placid of Christian Brothers said “responsibility is enhanced when members are made to participate not only in the decision-making process but also in standing up to the decision. Then its implementation becomes very effective.”
Expressing the realistic concerns and context of religious persons in the congregations in India, Salesian Fr. Michael opined that principles of good governance could be applicable if and only if proper training and education are given both to the animators and members of the community.
Endorsing the view, Franciscan Missionary Br. Abraham said that for good governance, the principles are to be imbibed in the minds of religious from their initial formation.
Br. Mani Mekkunnel, CRI National Secretary initiated and guided the discussion, focussing on the issue-based approach and concerns of Religious congregations such as decision-making, transfers and appointment.
He hoped that the gathering of actual experiences and experiments of a few congregations in this direction would further initiate good governance in many others.
The coffee-shop kick started wider consultation on the vision, principles, characteristics of good governance and its possible implementation in congregations.
A series of such coffee-shops are planned to collect ideological signposts for good governance in Religious life.