Having coffee together!

by | May 3, 2024

On the theme ‘Seeking peace together and what is best for the city’ (cf. Jer 29:7), some 30 Christians committed to Together for Europe (TfE) met on Tuesday 16 April 2024 in the parish hall of St Paul’s in Innsbruck, to take a shared look at the city of Innsbruck and the region of Tyrol […]

On the theme ‘Seeking peace together and what is best for the city’ (cf. Jer 29:7), some 30 Christians committed to Together for Europe (TfE) met on Tuesday 16 April 2024 in the parish hall of St Paul’s in Innsbruck, to take a shared look at the city of Innsbruck and the region of Tyrol with reference to this motto.

They were joined by Thomas Römer (YMCA) and Michael Guttenberger (Vineyard), who had come from Munich.

Thomas Römer began by inviting the participants to introduce themselves according to their membership of a Church, Community or group: Schönstatt Movement, Lumen Christi Tirol, Focolare Movement, Sant’Egidio, ENC (European Network of Communities), Free Christian Community.

The speakers realised, with good intuition, that there was still a good ‘room for progress’ in the relationship between the groups present, and asked each movement to briefly expound on their characteristics. On the basis of this, Thomas Römer emphasised the essentials of each one, thus enabling a deeper mutual understanding and greater appreciation of the different charisms. In this process, carefully accompanied by the two long-standing ‘fighters’ of Together for Europe, all present experienced and enhanced gratitude to God for the different gifts and charisms, which appeared in all their evidence. The joy of fraternity was tangible among all.

Reviewing the history of TfE, Römer emphasised the decisive contribution of the Chiara Lubich’s charism of unity.

In the course of the dialogue, several participants asked how the goal of ‘Together’ (for Innsbruck, for Tyrol, for Europe) could be carried further. One of the answers was surprising in its apparent banality: ‘Having coffee together!’. By this, Thomas Römer meant meeting without ulterior motives, with the sole desire to get to know each other better, to appreciate diversity as a whole and to enjoy it. Other points were explained in a PowerPoint.

At the end of the official part, much gratitude was shown to the two speakers, accompanied by refreshments with snacks and drinks, which allowed for further conversations and an even deeper getting to know each other.

by Gusti Oggenfuss, TfE Innsbruck

Photo: Armin Inglin, Anna Maria Gasser-Renzler

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