Who are we ?

A Community born in the wake of Vatican II

The Community of the Beatitudes is a contemplative and missionary community born in France in 1973 out of  the Catholic Charismatic Renewal following the Vatican II Council. It was founded by two couples, Gérard Croissant (Ephraïm), his wife Jo and Jean-Marc and Mireille Hammel, who had experienced an outpouring of the Holy Spirit and an intimacy with God. A strong urge to live in community appeared to them as an evident calling from on High to live according to the Gospel along the lines of the fist Christian communities described in the Acts of the Apostles.

The Community started to grow in Cordes sur Ciel (81) and Cardinal Robert Coffy recognized it as a  « pious union ».In 2002 the Pontifical Council for the Laity recognized the Community as a Private international Association of the  Faithful. After many stages of development, this association was dissolved in 2011. On 29th June 2011 the Archbishop of Toulouse, Mgr Robert Le Gall, set up a new Public Association of the Faithful under diocesan law with the view of becoming an Ecclesial Family of Consecrated Life under the authority of the Roman Congregation for Institutes of Consecrated Life.

An image of the People of God called to holiness

The Community, as an image of the people of God where both unity and diversity are expressed, gathers together consecrated sisters, consecrated brothers, some of which are priests, and lay members, single or married (some of which are permanent deacons or have chosen to remain single for the Kingdom having pronounced a vow of celibacy).

In 2018 the Community counts about 800 members : 175 consecrated brothers (of which 82 are priests), 270 sisters, 300 lay members of wich 12 are permanent deacons and 50 have pronounced a vow of celibacy for the Kingdom. All share the same initial calling. Finally,  about forty trainees go through a year of discernment and formation in our houses with a view to entering the Community.

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Connected to the Community are « alliance members » such as the Disciples of the Lamb or Friends of the Lamb who form the Beatitudes Family.

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The Community has founded so far 50 houses in 26 countries worldwide, in Europe, Africa, Asia, North and South America, the South Sea Islands and the Middle East.

Governance structure of the Community

The Community of the Beatitudes is composed of :

  • a branch of consecrated brothers of which some are deacons and priests under the authority of a General Responsible, who is always a priest ;
  • a branch of consecrated sisters under the responsibility of a General Responsible ;
  • and a branch of lay memberrs, married or single, with its own statutes, under the supervision of a General Moderator.

The Community is governed by a President, man or woman, elected among its consecrated members by a General Assembly whose delegates are elected by all the Community members. The President works with the help of a General Council composed of the three Branch Responsibles  in a collegial spirit, the aim being to seek the will of God and to exercise its authority, respecting the autonomy of each individual branch.

The Community’s General Assembly, which took place in October 2015, elected for four years Sr. Anna Katharina Pollmeyer as President of the Community, 
Fr. Benoît-Joseph Raymond General Responsible for the brothers’ branch, Sr. Maria-Martha Kühnapfel, General Responsible for the sisters’ branch, and Anne-Emmanuelle Dixmérias, General Moderator for the lay branch. They have all chosen an assistant.

The Community is also accompanied by Brother Henry Donneaud, o.p., Apostolic Assistant nominaterd by the Roman Congregation for the Institutes of Consecrated Liferegation.

 

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