Thinking, creating, changing. Lviv Business school had an inspiring reflexio program for leaders. During the three days leaders had a unique opportunity to make a break in order to think about the eternally relevant issues of values, morale, where and how we invest into our lives.
The program started with a prayer and an inspiring breakfast with the rector of Ukrainian Catholic University Rev. Bohdan Prakh: ‘The chain of good things shall be launched every day. If you fail to launch the chain today, you have wasted the day. If you fail to launch the chain of good things in your life you’ve wasted your life. Thirty years of priesthood and the experience of communicating with different people in different formats taught me to leave the unnecessary things aside and to value the precious things and inspire others to do so,’ he addressed the pubic leaders.
Day One of reflexio continued with a frank conversation with a well-known human rights advocate, a dissident, and a former political prisoner Myroslav Marynovych. The vice rector of UCU shared his experience and the life lessons he learnt over the 7 years in strict security camps and three years of exile. ‘After the 20 days long hunger strike in a camp at the Urals I was convoyed to the prison. In the prison they give you half a loaf of bread and a herring for a day. Can you imagine how it felt to get bread and a herring after 20 days of hunger strike? Still, I was eating it all in small bites… After an hour I was all done but I was still hungry. I was brought to the prison, they took me to a cell with three criminal prisoners. I said hello, put down my backpack and sat down. They looked at me and reached for their sacks without a single word. They took their bread and put it in front of me. It was bewildering… I just had tears in my eyes. So, I was sitting there, chewing the bread and praying to God to forgive them all for the bread they shared with me. It was a lesson for a lifetime. It showed that every single person, even a criminal, has a spark of the image of God inside, you just need to get it out’, – he reveals.
Another lesson Myroslav Marynovych shared with the participants was not to get irritated if you fail to understand things. ‘If you do need something then it shall come with time. Realizing it gave the feeling of serenity to me. Since the world has its own evolution and pace, you just need to do your job and do it well, then God would open up for you what you need to do at the right moment’.
In the afternoon, the program participants attended a master class in icon painting by the UCU School of Icon Painting ‘Radruzh’ and a gallery of modern sacred art ‘IconArt’. They also met its founder and director Kostyantyn Shumsyki, a KEMBA graduate.
Day Two of the reflexio program took place in a St Gerard monastery in Hnizdychiv, not far from Lviv. It was a day for reflection and silence accompanied by a nominant bishop Volodymyr Hrutsa: ‘We are here in order to find time for ourselves,’ the priest started his lectures with these words.
He called on the participants not to forget to fill up their lives with the Lord. He also illustrated his words with the following story: ‘At a construction site, there was a man who kept dragging an empty trail from point A to point B all the time. When asked why he was going around with an empty trail he replied: ‘The construction pace is so high I do not have time to load the trail’. The point is that one should not forget to invite God into his/her trail of life. Life demands from us to keep the pace and the speed while the soul wants the opposite, it longs for peace. This day is here to make you ask yourselves: ‘Where is God in my life? What am I thankful for to God? What am I able to accept and not?’
The third creative day of #reflexio started with an inspiring breakfast with Lidiya Bilas, a founder of a Creative International School for Children: ‘Creativity is when you are not afraid to go beyond the conventional limits or say a different word. We have to set for ourselves high goals which might seem unattainable at a first glance, so that we could develop creativity and have our own Everest’. The day continued with a master class by the Les Kurbas theater actors. ‘Open up, feel the body language and give new sound to your voice.’ ‘The most important thing for you as an actor is to stay yourself. Despite all the roles you enact in a theater,’ a director of the theater Mykola Bereza shared with the participants.
Participants were also the first in Ukraine to practice the author’s course on self-understanding with rev. Arnaldo Pangrazzi, a professor of International Theological Institute of Pastoral Health Care ‘Camillianum’ (Italy) and Rev. Ihor Boyko, Doctor of Moral Theology, rector of Lviv Theological Seminary. At the course ‘Get to Know Yourself’ we were talking about the five dimensions of human personality such as physical, mental, social, emotional and spiritual.
‘Values are the backbone of our life. It is a contribution we make into the development of society. They set direction to our life. The world needs morality and spirituality. If these two things are settled in your life you will manage all the rest,’ Rev. Arnaldo Pangrazzi emphasized.
One of the tools for self-cognition is the Johari window.
Each of us is a window divided into 4 parts:
– open area – something we know about ourselves and others know about us
– blind area – something we do not know about ourselves but which is obvious to others
– hidden area – something we know about ourselves (our secrets) but others don’t
– unknown area – something that remains unknown both for us and the others (unconscious).
To conclude the course, Rev. Arnaldo suggested leaders give a thought to the four most important verbs in doing their business:
– do – what can I do for a consumer or society?
– say– what can I say to a consumer or society?
– be – who can I be for my client or society?
– learn– what can I learn from a consumer or society?
Thank you to the participants for the three unforgettable days and wish to always keep getting to know themselves and the world!