Formation in the MSSP context has experienced major shifts throughout the years. The last twenty years have particularly been marked by a shift towards internationality, particularly with communities with members from different countries, and with the opening of the International House of Formation in Manila, the Philippines.
The interchange of members between one region and another, and the onset of the internet and easier means of connecting through the medium have brought people and resources to a place which is more accessible for all those involved in the formation of MSSP members and laity alike.
Our Society strives to train those individuals called by the Lord to join in her missionary service. The aim of this formation is to promote the individual growth of each member in the consecrated life lived in a community of a missionary character. The ideal set before us by our Founder will inspire all efforts towards this end.
The demand for authentic formation for mission today comes not only from the complex realities which missionaries encounter in their tasks, but also from an increasing number of committed lay people in various countries where the MSSP is present, who have come to share its charism and vision. The continuing search for ways to understand the spirituality of the Founder, Joseph De Piro, and the response of the Missionary Society of St. Paul to the world today begs for a rigorous approach to the formation of MSSP members and collaborators.
The end of each formation process remains that stated by the Founder himself, quoting St. Paul: “Until Christ is formed in you.” No matter how refined the process of formation becomes, the MSSP, heeding the Founders choice of psalms believes that it is God, not we, who form. “Unless the Lord builds the house, those who build it labour in vain.” (Psalm 127)
Today, all the members in Formation, and all those who hold Gods calling through the Missionary Society of St. Paul dear, rejoice, in acknowledging the faithfulness of he who turns earthenware vessels, into instruments of his loving action in the world.