Hazard – Dangerous Thinking Ahead – Questions That Could Change Your Mind

It has been often observed that tyrants always go after the dreamers and artists – the poets, philosophers, writers, media. These are people who lead others to think and ask questions.

Vincent and Louise, Frederick, and indeed all the great figures of our Vincentian heritage, were not afraid to look at human suffering. They were not afraid to ask what has become known as the Vincentian question, “What must be done?”

What must be done?

At the end of a fine article collaboration is to dream together/ Javier Chento presents us with what amounts to the kinds of questions that lead to dangerous thinking, to thinking that could change your mind.

  • Do we dream of a different world, or perhaps just live from day to day “putting out fires?”
  • In what way is our (my) Vincentian presence transforming our (my) surroundings?
  • Are we agents of change?
  • What does “Charity” mean for a Vincentian? Is it a synonym for “alms,” or do we work for genuine transformation of our world by Love?
  • How much do we believe that Vincentian Collaboration can help us maximize our effectiveness and meet the challenges we face as Vincentians?
  • About prophetic denunciation, is it part of our “profile as evangelizers?” Do we use the media and social networks to denounce injustice?
  • Do we dare to be nonconformists, even disobedient, before the status quo? Are we willing to risk, to fall down, to be wrong, on behalf of the poor?
  • “Unity is strength.” Is it palpably true that this saying is a reality within the Vincentian Family in my area?
  • What actions can we carry out in my local area to promote active cooperation within the Vincentian Family?
  • What is the “value” we give to collaboration among the different branches within the Vincentian Family?
  • In what areas of the Vincentian Family can collaborative work be given stronger impetus?
  • What actions and places can’t we reach, but which we’ll be able to as a particular branch of the Family, if we can count on the other’s collaboration?

If these questions are not enough, here are some more from other sources.

  • Do I know the Vincentian Family, beyond my own branch?
  • Do I know the challenges, struggles and difficulties of our Family?
  • Do I work for the good of the poor, from the Vincentian Family, together with my Vincentian brothers and sisters, beyond the initials and names we use for our branches?
  • Who should be included?
  • What partnerships currently exist in your system?
  • Where do new partnerships need to be forged?
  • How does participation in the change process assist partners in accomplishing their mission and vision?
  • Are key stakeholders / centers of expertise involved within each locus of collaborative work?
  • Do participants at all levels understand and buy in to the vision?
  • Do participants understand how collaboration works?

What must be done?

  • Do I have the courage to ask these questions?
  • Do I have the courage to listen to the suggestions of those who do ask these questions?
  • Do I have the courage to offer the sweat of my brow and the strength of my arms to work for short-term and long-term solutions?

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