Newsletter N. 63 – The Camillian World Seen from Rome…and Rome seen from the world



Saint Mother Giuseppina Vannini: a Life According to the Charism of Saint Camillus

By Padre Koffi Médard ABOUE, M.I.


The Institute of the Daughters of St. Camillus (DSC) has no other charism than the charism of St. Camillus, as is demonstrated by the first article of the Constitution of the Institute: ‘In direct transmission from St. Camillus de Lellis through the Blessed Founders, the Congregation has received from the Holy Spirit the gift of bearing witness to the always present love of Christ towards the sick, in spiritual and corporal ministry which is also exercised at risk to one’s own life’ (Const., art. 1). In essential terms, this text refers in effect to the charism that the Order of the Ministers of the Sick received as a legacy from its founder St. Camillus in faraway 1591 and which it has stewarded down the centuries and handed on to the various religious Institutes, bodies and associations that make up what we call today the Camillian Charismatic Family (CCF). Article 1 of the Constitution of the Ministers of the Sick reads: ‘The Order of the Ministers of the Sick, a living part of the Church, has received from God, through its Founder St. Camillus de Lellis, the gift of reliving the ever-present merciful love of Christ for the sick and bearing witness to it to the world’. Here it is right to emphasise with Fr. Angelo Brusco that ‘Since the sixteenth century, when St. Camillus was born and lived, until today, the charism of merciful charity towards the sick, which Camillus de Lellis received from God and handed on to the Church, has been enriched through the contributions of many important people each of whom has enriched the original design of the Founder of the Ministers of the Sick, adding to it new original nuances’ (in Camilliani/s, n. 80, Year VIII – September-October 1994).

In the Camillian Charismatic Family this charism in the various Constitutions is written in golden letters because it is the inspiring source that legitimates in the eyes of the Church’s decision-making bodies their aggregation, with full rights, to the spirituality of St. Camillus. In this, the Institute of the DSC stands out in an excellent way because of its creative faithfulness to the charism of St. Camillus. The beatification of the founders (Mother Vannini, 16 October 1994; Fr. Luigi Tezza, 4 November 2001) and the imminent canonisation of Mother Vannini (13 October 2019) are nothing else but a recognition by the Church of the merits of this religious family in developing the gift that God made to the world through her. Therefore, it is the whole of the work of the founders but in particular of Mother Giuseppina Vannini that is recognised, confirmed and proposed anew to the Church and to the world as a ‘New World of Charity’, to use the happy expression of Pope Benedict XIV (Pope Benedict XIV, 1746). To use the words of Fr. Angelo once again, amongst the founding figures of a branch of Camillian spirituality ‘Giuseppina Vannini occupies a position of special importance: the first red cross of St. Camillus who after him would shine forth in Rome in the light of the Blesseds (and now of the saints), a sign of the value and the continuity of his message on which the sun never sets’. From this perspective, it appears clear that the charism and spirituality of the Blessed Vannini should be understood anew in the light of the charism and the spirituality of St. Camillus, through the mediation offered by the Camillian religious the Blessed Luigi Tezza as well’. To sum up, everything about the life and in the life of our saint proclaims, and breathes in, the charism of St. Camillus.




Homily of his holiness Pope Francis

“Your faith has saved you” (Lk 17:19). This is the climax of today’s Gospel, which reflects the journey of faith. There are three steps in this journey of faith. We see them in the actions of the lepers whom Jesus heals. They cry out, they walk and they give thanks.

First, they cry out. The lepers were in a dreadful situation, not only because of a disease that, widespread even today, needs to be battled with unremitting effort, but also because of their exclusion from society. At the time of Jesus, lepers were considered unclean and, as such, had to be isolated and kept apart (cf. Lev 13:46). We see that when they approach Jesus, they “kept their distance” (Lk 17:12). Even though their condition kept them apart, the Gospel tells us that they “called out” (v. 13) and pleaded with Jesus. They did not let themselves be paralyzed because they were shunned by society; they cried out to God, who excludes no one. We see how distances are shortened, how loneliness is overcome: by not closing in on ourselves and our own problems, by not thinking about how others judge us, but rather by crying out to the Lord, for the Lord hears the cry of those who find themselves alone.


Tv2000 L’ora solare: Mother Laura Biondi, Superior General Emeritus of the Congregation of the Daughters of St. Camillus. In the studios to speak about the canonisation, which will take place on 13 October, of their founder: Sister Giuseppina Vannini.


TELEPACE: Saint Giuseppina Vannini narrated by the Daughters of St. Camillus and the Camillians in a documentary by Telepace. – GUARDA QUI

In His Image – Rai 1 Interview with Sister Laura Cortese – GUARDA QUI

VATICAN NEWS – The postulator: ‘Mother Vannini, the Saint of Lived Charity’

Thanksgiving Mass for the canonization of Mother Giuseppina Vannini – Basilica di San Giovanni in Laterano PHOTO GALLERY


In memory of Leo Pessini, the former Superior General of the Order of the #Camillians – and one of the principal figures of the debate on bioethics in Brazil, IHU On-Line has recently published an interview with some scholars who worked with him in recent years.

In their words and their memories the legacy of Fr. Leo in the field of ethics and health clearly emerges



 Inauguration of the extraordinary missionary month of October 2019.

Br. Madhu and Fr. Jaison of the Camillian Province of India have inaugurated the Extraordinary Missionary Month.

Fr. Jaison made these comments: ‘The purpose of this event is to transcend national frontiers with the wish to bear witness with a prophetic spirit and evangelical boldness. We are called to be missionaries and to proclaim the Good News with a sense of apostolic zeal, a profound sense of the missionary spirit, vitality and charity. This missionary mandate touches us personally; for every baptised man and woman this is a mission


    On 10-12 October, at the generalate house of the Camillians in Rome, the meeting took place of directors of centres for humanisation and pastoral care in health.

The goal of the meeting was:

– To promote relationships between those who are responsible for centres for humanisation and pastoral care in health in the Order through the paradigm of communion.

– To strengthen the inter-relationships between these centres as part of the Camillian ministry.

– To draw up a project to present to the next General Chapter in the light of the closure of the Camillianum as we have known it hitherto.



Message to the Order – Meeting of the Directors of the Camillian Centers for Humanization and Pastoral Health

When the process of the definitive closure of the Camillianum began on June 2018, the late Superior General, Fr. Leocir Pessini, in union with his Consultors have instituted a Commission to study a possible central body for the promotion of the Camillian culture and the coordination of the various Centers of humanization and pastoral health present in the different Provinces of the Order. After listening and reflecting, the commission composed by Fr. Aris Miranda, Bro. Jose Carlos Bermejo and Fr. Médard Aboue had met with the directors of the various Camillian centers of promotion and humanization of health at the Generalate House in Rome from October 10–12, 2019.

During the meeting, after a careful analysis of the reasons that led to the closure of the Camillianum[1], we had the opportunity to listen and appreciate the formidable experience of vitality of the Camillian Centers[2] and the willingness of all the participants and many religious not to lower their arms and continue to dream as our founding brothers of the Camillianum did 30 years ago. In these three decades of life, the Camillianum has produced a strong and dependable culture of pastoral health theology in the very heart of the Church.

The participants are pleased to note that the Pontifical Roman Universities such as the Lateranum and the Angelicum, have now integrated in a systematic way masteral and doctoral degrees in pastoral theology of care and health in their curriculum studiorum. In the light of these innovations, even if they do not directly involve us, we can say that the Camillianum is not lived in vain. Proud, therefore, of the contribution that the Camillianum brought to the theological reflection and pastoral action of the Church, the participants studied the project called Camillianum Center as proposed by the Commission. The project proposal was discussed and enriched by the various suggestions coming from the group works, which constituted the important ideas that the meeting delivered to the Consulta for the formulation of a motion to the forthcoming General Chapter.

1 Cfr. Father Juan Javier Flores Arcas, (substitute-Dean of Studies of Camillianum), Pontifical Institute of Pastoral Health Theology “Camillianum, A Report to the Meeting of the General Consulta of the Camillian Order and the Provincial Superiors, Rome, March 17, 2019; Cfr. Father Laurent Zoungrana (Vicar General), Welcome Address, Generalate House, Rome, October 10, 2019.

2 at least 12 Camillian Centers of Pastoral and Humanization of Health in our Provinces.




 ‘More heart in those hands’: this famous phrase of St. Camillus de Lellis guided about 500 Romans, who have just been confirmed or are preparing for confirmation, in their nocturnal pilgrimage through the historic centre. But to provide a rhythm to their walk, in the evening of Saturday 12 October there were also various moments from the life of the founder of the Camillians.  Proposing this itinerary – the Diocesan Catechistic Office, led by Don Andrea Cavallini.

After the whole of the group had gone to the square of the Church of St. Mary Magdalene and a catechesis on the conversion of St. Camillus and his ‘special’ relationship with the crucifix, the nocturnal pilgrimage came to an end at the Church of the Holy Spirit in Sassia in front of the relic of the heart of St. Camillus.


The Church of St. Mary Magdalene – Saturday 19 October 2019, at 20.00 – a concert by this famous choir – and musical instruments – from the Philippines.







(16 September 2019 – San Paolo – Brazil) – the directors and administrators of Camillian Socio-Health Care Institutions (CSHCI) met in San Paolo, Brazil, for the second conference of the administrators and directors of Camillian works. In all there were 137 guests and participants from 17 of the countries in which the Camillians exercise their socio-health care ministry.

The first conference was held in 2003 in Seiano, Naples (IT), at which the CSHCI charter was drawn up. Sixteen years later, this document was revisited and comments and suggestions were collected for the final version which will be presented over the next few days.

    Amongst the guests of this meeting there were also Mr. Francis Wiesner, the President of the Governing Council of the St. Campill Life Plan Community Campus (USA); Dr. Jessica Petrillo, a senior consultant for health-care security at the office of International Health and Biodefense of the State Department of the United States of America; Dr. Mirfin Mpundu, head of action on resistance to antibiotics (ReAct) Africa; and Msgr Robert Vitillo, the general secretary of the International Catholic Migration Commission.

     This meeting was the outcome of cooperation between the General Consulta and the Camillian Province of Brazil.



We would like to draw readers’ attention to the web site of the Camillian Delegation of Chile where you will find thoughts, photographs and recent news. In addition, we communicate the placing online of the new site of Camillian spirituality in which Fr. Pietro Magliozzi has launched an online course in Spanish entitled ‘CHRISTIAN INTERDISCIPLINARY PEDAGOTHERAPY’. Commencement date: 30 September.


Pictures of the priestly ordination of our Chilean confrere Basil Darker Gaete





 On 13-15 October prayers were held for the unity of the family.

On 27 September the local Chapter of the Camillian community in Lotung was held in preparation for the Provincial Chapter of the Camillia Province of the Philippines.

On the same day in Lotung some events were held that had been organised by the government for the day dedicated to elderly people. Our community organised prayer meetings.

On 30 September a bridge collapsed in Nanfang Ao. Many wounded people were cared for by our institutions. The President of the Republic of Taiwan visited the injured cared for in our hospital.


On 21 September Walter Vinci, who is from Mesagne, was ordained a priest at the hands of the Auxiliary Bishop of Rome, Msgr. Paolo Ricciardi. This ordination took place in the Parish of San Pio di Pietrelcina where Walter grew up. ‘The ordination of a young priest who has consciously chosen his mission with the goal of dedicating his existence to those who suffer’, declared the first citizen of Mesgane, the mayor Toni Matarrelli, ‘is not only an event that involves the Catholic community – it involves the whole town. I hope that Don Walter will achieve during his spiritual and human pathway all the goals that he has set himself and become a point of reference of care for those most in need’.


We share with you the testimony of Father Walter, the new Camillian priest. The need always to ask the Lord what his project for each one of us is, and to be ready to follow it with joy. WHATCH HERE


For the Province of Sicily and Naples of the Camillians, the month of September was rich in important moments. The first celebration took place on 4 September, the Feast Day of the Exaltation of the Holy Cross, when the Camillian deacon Dario Giuseppe Malizia was ordained a priest in the cathedral of Palermo, surrounded by another four priests who were also being ordained (another religious and three deacons). The priestly ordination of Dario Giuseppe was preceded by days of Camillian mission which saw him, together with confreres and Camillian sisters, visit important stages on his vocational journey: the Mission of Biagio Conte, the parish, Villa Sofia Hospital and the Church of Santa Ninfa of the Camillians in Via Maqueda. Father Dario Giuseppe received the Sacrament of Holy Orders with the laying on of hands of Msgr. Corrado Lorefice and with his relatives, friends and confreres he celebrated not only his ordination but also his return to the Monaldi Hospital of Naples where he would be a chaplain. Father Dario immediately showed that he has an excellent capacity for transmitting the Word of God through homilies that are the outcome of personal meditation and nearness to the human suffering of those who in recent years he has met in centres for care and treatment.

On 24-28 September Camillian religious of the South of Italy met at Aci Sant’Antonio (CT) for the course of spiritual exercises whose subject was ‘Bless the Lord my Rock’ given by the Salesian Don Giuseppe Buccellato. Father Buccellato, a lecturer at the St. Paul Theological Institute of Catania, dwelt upon the great value of being and becoming for others a blessing, against every form of ill-speaking, that is to say every temptation to devalue other people. During the exercises, on 28 September the three postulants Alessandro La Rosa, Domenico Sciacca and Gianluca Spalice officially entered the novitiate which this year as well will be in Messina under the guidance of the teacher of novices Fr. Hubert Goudjinou. To Alessandro, Domenico and Gianluca will be added Lorenzo Lettere, a novice of the Province of Rome: to these young men, to their enthusiasm and their joy, we wish a year of the novitiate according to the heart of Christ and according to the heart of St. Camillus, in their wish to continue their journey with impetus and perseverance.

Lastly, on 29 September, the Feast Day of the Holy Archangels, Salvatore Maria Barbagallo and Mariano Pio Servadei, after completing the year of the novitiate, professed their religious vows for the first time, promising God to serve the sick even when they put their lives at risk, in chastity, poverty and obedience, and putting on their habits with the red cross of St. Camillus .CONTINUA QUI 


On 19 September a meeting took place of Camillian religious of the Province of Thailand in the Provincial house of Latkrabang (Bangkok)


The programme of the Weekend of Fraternity for the Pastoral Year 2019/2020. Help us to spread information about this, sharing knowledge about it and inviting interested young people to take part!


At Verona the house for formation of the Province of North Italy of the Camillians looks after the splendid Church of St. Mary of Heaven which, with its reliquary, will feature strongly in the broadcast ‘Secret Verona’.


Camillian Centre for Formation – VERONA

The Centro Camilliano di Formazione (CCF) is an institution that was established in 1983 by the Camillian religious of the regions of Lombardy, Veneto, Emilia Romagna and Trentino Alto Adige with the purpose of contributing to the formation of those who work in the sector of health and suffering.

The formation of agents of pastoral care involved in accompanying sick people and their family relatives has always occupied an important place in the programmes of the Camillian Centre for Formation (CCF). To increase and improve the formation promoted in the past in this sector of service of the Church for those who suffer, the CCF has decided to create a new course in pastoral care in health, taking advantage of the patronage and the cooperation of the Faculty of Theology of Triveneto (PD). In a historical period that is characterised by rapid socio-cultural, religious and ethical changes, agents of pastoral care – priests, deacons, men and women religious and lay people – are called to acquire ever new skills that will enable them to communicate in an effective way the tender and merciful love of the Lord towards both the sick and those who take care of them. The course is organised so as to offer those taking part not only solid theoretical contents but also an opportunity to translate them into practice through help relationships in various health-care and socio-health care contexts.  Even prior to promoting the expertise of the lecturers and a positive response on the part of those taking part, the favourable outcome of this initiative is directed towards the care provided by Jesus, divine Samaritan of souls and bodies, and to the intercession of the Virgin Mary, health of the sick.

Here is the annual programme of the activities for 2019/2020


A trip to the projects in Armenia supported by the 8 per thousand contributions of Italian taxpayers to the Italian Church. In Gyumri a day care centre for the elderly and in Ashotsk a hospital managed by our confrere, Father Mario Cuccarollo. A region destroyed by the earthquake that still today has to deal with the consequences of the fall of the Soviet Union. The Catholic Church here is a ‘sign’ of love given to everyone in a disinterested way.



Download here the new edition of CrossOver – Camillian Disaster Service International

Download here Milome – the Camillian Delegation in Kenya

Download here Hogar San Camillo – the Vice-Province of Peru

Download here 100 años de la Revista Vida y Salud – the Delegation of Mexico


Certainly the death of a loved one leads a person to overcome the pain involved in various ways. Allowing time to pass which ‘heals everything’ in the solitude of suffering. Denying and avoiding memories, trying to live as though nothing had happened. Or perhaps supposing that the pain is a lament and constant relief in a style of life in which there is no longer the possibility of being happy again. Today we want you to know that pain is truly a process of healing where feelings should be expressed, suffering should be calmed, the reality of death should be accepted, and affective energy should be positively redirected with a project full of meaning, loving with a new language of love for the person we miss so much.

Here you will find videos on this subject produced by Fr. Mateus Batista, a Camillian priest and a specialist in pastoral care in health.


At the meeting of the General Consulta of 9 October 2019, the following were admitted to perpetual religious profession:

Njega Njue Charles

Misaro Maranga Dominic

(Temporary professed religious of the Province of North Italy/the Delegation of Kenya).

Miguel Angel Gonzalez Joya

Luis Eduardo Perez Villegas

Anibal Vasquez Ochoa

(Three temporary professed religious of the Province of North Italy/the Delegation of Colombia-Ecuador).

Miguel Angel Gonzalez Joya

Miguel Angel Gonzalez Joya

Misaro Maranga Dominic

Misaro Maranga Dominic

Luis Eduardo Perez Villegas

Luis Eduardo Perez Villegas







Njega Njue Charles

Njega Njue Charles

Anibal Vasquez Ochoa

Anibal Vasquez Ochoa






LINEAMENTA for reflections and proposals in preparation for the LIX General Chapter of the Order of Camillians May 2020

What is Camillian prophecy today? Peering into the past, living in the present trying to serve as Samaritans, journeying with hope towards the future.

Read here the version in  italianoinglesefrancese


‘See, now they vanish, the faces and places, with the self which, as it could, loved them. To become renewed, transfigured, in another pattern’ (T.S. Eliot).

Fr. CRISTIANO LESO (1938-2019)

Cristiano Leso Tinazzi was born in Erbezzo (VR) on 14 February 1938 to his father Giovanni Battista and his mother Rosalinda. He was the second of seven children – four sons and three daughters. In October 1950 he entered the seminary of Villa Visconta in Besana Brianza (MB). On 25 September 1956 he went to the house of San Giuliano in Verona for his year of novitiate which ended with his first profession of religious vows on 26 September 1957.

He took his perpetual vows on 9 April 1961 and was ordained a priest on 19 June 1965 in Mottinello di Rossano Veneto (VI). Shortly afterwards he was sent to Colombia to support the new Latin American foundation of the Order and arrived in Bogota on 15 October 1965. He was sent to the community of Medellin on 28 December 1965 to be a chaplain at the Leo XIII Clinic where he stayed until the end of January 1970. He was made a chaplain at the Central Military Hospital in early February 1970.

In March 1971 he was entrusted, together with another religious of the Order, with founding a new Camillian community in Barquisimeto (Venezuela) where he became the chaplain of the ‘Antonio Maria Pinedo’ Civil Hospital. CONTINUE HERE.


Now they live in Christ whom they met in the Church, followed in our vocation, and served in the sick and the suffering. Trusting that the Lord, the Holy Virgin our Queen, St. Camillus, the Blessed Luigi Tezza, the Blessed Giuseppina Vannini, the Blessed Enrico Rebuschini and the Blessed Maria Domenica Brun Barbantini and our deceased religious brothers and sisters, will welcome them in their midst, we commend them in our prayers, remembering them with affection, esteem and gratitude’.


 For all the victims of all types of disasters, for people who have lost their lives, for their loved ones, for the survivors, and for all those who work to provide help, we pray:

God in heaven, who has created and who preserves every existence,

You know all of our sadness and our suffering. May all the victims of all types of disasters be welcomed in your peace! Receive, we pray, in your mercy, our very many brothers and sisters buried by the forces unleashed by nature. Lead them to your home!

Comfort the pain of so many families, dry the tears of so many brothers and sisters, offer protection to the loneliness of so many orphans. Instil courage into everyone so that pain is transformed into a journey of growth and hope.