In September, Gilles & Véronique CORMIER visit Latvia and its CANA team for the first time. They were able to welcome the new leaders and to guide them within this new responsibility in CANA. In this article, they share the good moments they lived together, as well as the difficulties that the couples go through in this country.

The CORMIER in Riga!

From the 22nd to 25th of September we visited this beautiful country for the first time. We met the new CANA team and the couples of this growing Fraternity.

There was 21 motivated couples who wanted to continue the adventure with CANA: 10 previous couples and 11 newcomers from the last CANA Week in July. After years of Covid, we could feel the hope being reborn. Two beautiful testimonies were shared with us about their conversion and the way the Lord led their couple.

At the end of the day, we witnessed a beautiful time of commitment!

In the evening, the fraternity leaders stayed and we were able to share a short talk as well as the main points of the CANA pedagogy. This moment was topped off by the sharing of good food that everyone had brought, allowing us to discover other culinary treasures.

The following day, the couples from the national team who are taking up their responsibilities, assisted by those who are continuing to carry out the mission, met up and had a good time with us. The sharing was deep and transparent, which helped us to discover more about the challenges and needs of this fraternity.

They are half Catholic, half Lutheran, which is a fine testimony to their shared mission. What they shared with us about the situation of couples and families in Latvia unfortunately resembles what we see in other European countries: divorces, major economic problems, lack of time, the place of each member of the couple in the family….

We felt a great desire to find help for couples so CANA Welcome is finally going to be launched after several attempts! We hope that this will enable couples who are further away from the Church to take time for themselves and consolidate their married life.

The question of service and balance and the place of each person’s word in the mission together was important in our meeting and we hope that this beautiful CANA Fraternity will continue its journey of growth as it listens to the Holy Spirit. Speaking the truth and praying are essential elements for growing together.

At the end of the day on Monday, we gave a long interview to Radio Maria in English, translated into Latvian, which we had to prepare. A wonderful experience!

To conclude, we would say that the great motivation of the leaders and the new needs of the country’s couples could be supported by the choice of CANA Refresh proposals, which would open new doors for them in a context that is becoming difficult, as in many other countries.

Gilles & Véronique CORMIER, CANA leaders