Dear LSM friends,

On the back of LSM’s 7th anniversary, we are grateful to God for the many fruits of the journey so far. The image of the “GCCM caterpillar” evolving into the “LSM butterfly” continues to be evocative. Besides getting a new name, this creature that is our movement is also getting a new form, while still being the same creature. This metamorphosis process is an ongoing invitation to adapt and evolve, to allow this beautiful LSM butterfly to fly and ride at its best the winds of the Holy Spirit.

In particular, the discernment process of our movement’s name and refreshed identity was a very special experience of synodality. It gave us a taste of the potential and the blessings entailed by a truly synodal journey, in line with the synodality “kairos” – or opportune moment – that the universal Church is living today. This kairos is illustrated by two important happenings.

First, the Synod on Synodality is an invitation to reflect and discern how to better walk together as a movement, with the voice of our members being better reflected in everything we do. In fact, prompted by the synod, in 2022 LSM embarked on a process to better listen to our members and discern together the synod’s implications for our movement.

Second, the Vatican recently published the “Decree to Regulate Terms of Office: For healthy government in the international associations of the faithful”, encouraging ecclesial movements to democratize their governance by setting term limits on leadership roles and ensuring that members have a voice in choosing their leaders. In fact, in the Church there is a long-standing tradition of term limits in charism-driven community leadership, as illustrated by the case of religious orders. This Vatican decree was very timely, being issued immediately after concluding LSM’s 2020-2021 discernment process, which also considered our structures while sparking questions about governance that were noted for future discernment. 

In light of these synodal happenings, and in light of the extraordinary growth in the movement, the LSM Board of Directors and the Secretariat have decided it is now time to kick off a process to further discern how to embrace synodality and strengthen our structures. Informed by the listening process currently underway, this complementary process will look at the overall structures of LSM and the development of new guidelines to govern LSM’s international leadership bodies – essential steps to facilitate future growth. To assist this process, we have sought facilitation support from the consultants at PIRON Global Development. More details and requests for your input will follow in the coming months, as the discernment process unfolds. As a subsequent step, later on, LSM chapters will be encouraged to explore similar discernment processes to embed synodality at a national level (while acknowledging and building on the experiences that are already taking place in some chapters).

We request your prayerful support for this important discernment process and we entrust this effort to the Holy Spirit, who continues to animate the Church at large and LSM, in particular, to embrace synodality and respond prophetically to the “signs of the times”. May such an effort nourish and boost even more the vitality of our beautiful movement, so that our efforts may bear abundant fruit in these times of ever-worsening planetary emergency.

Praised be God for this shared journey of healing of our common home. Laudato Si’! 

Lorna Gold, on behalf of the Board, and Tomás Insua, on behalf of the Secretariat