SYNODALITY IN CAMILLIAN PERSPECTIVE
In our current and daily experience of Camillian life, it seems to me that the theme of ‘synodality’, with the paradigms and images that are proposed to us, today, by the broader ecclesial reflection, has not been widely thematised.
However, not thematising certain attitudes or lifestyles does not necessarily mean not living them.
Pope Francis, at the conclusion of his address to the members (consecrated and lay) of the Camillian charismatic family, during the audience granted, now almost four years ago, on 18 March 2019, offered this happy summary on the synodal theme “I encourage you to always cultivate communion among yourselves, in that synodal style that I have proposed to the whole Church, listening to one another and all of you listening to the Holy Spirit, in order to enhance the contribution that each individual reality offers to the one Family, so as to express more fully the multiple potentialities that the charism contains. Be ever more aware that “it is in communion, even if it costs effort, that a charism reveals itself authentically and mysteriously fruitful” (Apostolic Exhortation Evangelii gaudium, 130). In fidelity to the initial inspiration of the Founder and the Founders, and in listening to the many forms of suffering and poverty of humanity today, you will thus know how to make the gift you have received shine with an ever new light; and many and many young people throughout the world will be able to feel drawn by it and to join with you, to continue to bear witness to the tenderness of God”.
The term ‘synodality’ has its roots in the Greek word synodos, an ancient word in the tradition of the Church. Composed of the preposition σύν, ‘with’, and the noun ὁδός, way, ‘synod’ indicates the ‘journey’ made together by the people of God and recalls the commitment and participation of the entire people of God in the life and mission of the Church.
It is about walking in the same direction, promoting convergence of ideas and actions and cultivating unity in diversity, unity of spirit in the bond of peace (cf. Eph 4:3).
If we allow ourselves to be accompanied by the image of the ‘synod’ as an experience of walking together along the same road, as Camillians, we must ask ourselves some very concrete questions.
Along which road should we walk together?
The main road to take remains our constitutional magna charta. In the Constitution and in the General Dispositions of the Order some terms – in their different lexical and grammatical nuances – that can help us to decline the Camillian synodal specificity are insistently repeated: ‘together’ recurs 17 times; ‘communion’ 9 times; ‘collaboration’ 9 times; ‘mission’ 10 times; ‘sharing’ 8 times; ‘listening’ 5 times; ‘discernment’ 3 times; ‘sharing’ 3 times.
The coordinates for a Camillian life emerge with great clarity: to live the common life oriented to charity; to share the one charism; to assume together the identical mission, according to the gifts proper to each one and the service required by the Order (cf. Const. 14); to deal all together with the problems of greater importance concerning the life and activities of the community (cf. Const. 19); with openness and trust towards all, to facilitate dialogue with individual religious, to discover together the will of God and stimulate fidelity to the commitments of religious life (cf. Const 23); to insert our activities into those of the universal Church and the local Churches, in coordination and collaboration with other religious institutes, with the diocesan clergy, with the laity and apostolic associations (Const. 57); to seek fidelity to the charism and the renewal of the ministry, in harmony with the spirit of the Founder and the instances of inculturation (Const. 58).
If synodality is understood and lived not so much as a more or less democratic method or a current fashion, but as the dynamic dimension, the historical dimension of ecclesial communion, then it is also easy to see what personal and institutional limits are fracturing the common path and slowing it down to the point of sedentariness. First of all, the search for a spirituality of wellbeing or individual comfort, in which God may still be mentioned, but reduced to something intimate, to an impersonal representation of the beyond… It is a spirituality without a community or even ecclesial dimension, without the need for concrete fraternal relationships and commitments, which feeds instead on faceless subjective experiences, privileging an interior and/or formative and/or narcissistic ministerial search.
Paraphrasing the command addressed by God to Abraham, the one from which every salvation story originates, “Get out of your land, your kinship and your father’s house” (Gen 12:1), God’s word asks him to go out, to leave everything around him, to move towards other lands, other horizons; and in this going out also from himself, he is called to go among the nations, to bring blessing to all. Instead, the centripetal movement of the inner journey ended up absorbing and neutralising the decisive message: “Go, get out of yourself!”.
This attitude, contradicting in this way the biblical message, according to which one seeks God if one seeks man, one believes in God if one also believes in others, one loves the God one cannot see if one also loves others one sees (cf. 1 Jn 4:20), also risks compromising our ministry of mercy towards the suffering. What is today, the spirit of St. Camillus that should animate and motivate our personal and community vocation; what is the mystical intensity, the high temperature of the soul that in St. Camillus enabled him to cure – by touching the sick person and not exclusively delegating the ‘touch’ of the sick person to others – truly ‘every’ man and ‘the whole’ man?
What is the intimate motivation that allowed him to touch a weak, frail, sick, dying body but at the same time touch that person’s soul?
With which style to walk together?
The person who wishes to walk agilely, long stretches of road realises that walking with light luggage, or rather, with ‘hand luggage’ only, is the most efficient strategy. If, then, this agile style is assumed by all walking companions, the stages to be organised, the climbs to be faced, the hiccups to be resolved will be an opportunity to grow in pliability and resilience.
With this lightness, especially of things and of structures, it will be more immediate – because it is less over-structured – to identify needs, to descend into the needs of others, and those who are more fatigued or trudging will be able to rely confidently on others.
Meditating on St. Camillus’ letter testament can offer some strong insights into a basic element for building Camillian synodality and for not watering down our journey begun as ‘pilgrims of the Absolute’, reducing it to a typical journey of ‘tourists of the sacred’: “…we must with all exact diligence and spirit maintain the purity of our poverty… because our institute will be maintained to the extent that poverty is observed ad unguem (to the nail=to perfection)”.
The poverty so insisted upon by St. Camillus, turns out to be an incomparable indicator of the spiritual state, not only in the history of the Church, but also in the individual history of each one of us, particularly as Camillians. What are, in the concrete of our lives, the elements that show whether or not we live in the spirit of this first beatitude? In what does living as “poor” consist?
The poor in spirit accept that God penetrates him and disrupts his existence, ready to re-plan his life to follow God’s proposals. We become poor when we free ourselves from the egocentric mentality, from the spirit of omnipotence, when we unite our energies with those of others and accept to work for a project even if it is not of our own making; when we aspire to values and not to things; when we know how to possess and give without creating dependencies.
It is in fidelity to caring for the poor that the future of us Camillians is built. But we cannot be on their side if we do not have a heart set free by God. It is necessary to be free to take the side of those who have no voice to be heard; it is necessary not to be bound by any reality, to be free from forms of blackmail or seduction; free to love in a liberating way; free to allow ourselves to be continually challenged by the voice of God, who announces liberation with the coming of his Kingdom.
Today’s society challenges the life of following Jesus, in particular, with “a materialism greedy for possessions, inattentive to the needs and sufferings of the weakest” (Vita consecrata 89). We are called to respond with the challenge of evangelical poverty “often accompanied by an active commitment to the promotion of solidarity, justice and charity” (Ibid., 89).
This synodal style says the very style of God: it is a sign of a presence that does not impose itself, it is a shadow that caresses and does not overwhelm, it is a shelter that protects but does not divide or separate.
It is therefore prophecy! To stand beside one’s ‘poor’ neighbour, especially the frail and the sick, shows the beauty of an existence without walls or bolts, which close and prevent confidence, and assures that in suffering it is good to pause by sharing rather than manipulating.
Who are our fellow travellers and ‘recipients’?
Our charismatic origins are synodal. The first and springing Camillian prophecy lies in St. Camillus’ intuition to gather a company of pious and good men who, for the love of God, would serve the sick. It is around this charismatic and spiritually incandescent nucleus that the Order over the centuries has responded to the centrifugal fibrillations of history, reaffirming the value of unity and walking together.
At the heart of the synodal journey, we must ask ourselves whether we are really walking together, synodally with the poor, the sick and the suffering. These brothers and sisters are subjects for us, that is, companions on the path of evangelisation.
Do we really grow in accompanying each other in everyday life? Or are they merely the recipients of our pastoral attention? That is, are we still the ones who generously dispense our goods, convinced of their state of need, and are we not also beggars for attention, reciprocity, companionship, and support?
Towards what goals does this shared path lead?
This synodal progress should implement and root our awareness through an active co-participation in the reflection and planning of the present and future of the Camillian charism.
We have almost become accustomed to talking about collaboration mainly from our current condition of need and necessity, due to the persistent internal vocational crisis and the progressive reduction of external resources.
Synodality, on the other hand, should animate in us a profound ‘cultural and methodological’ conversion so that our search for cooperation and sharing is not just a search for ‘labour’ but an authentic confrontation with the novelty that otherness always brings.
This path should be structured and intersect at several levels:
Inter-congregational collaboration (at least between similar charismatic expressions) to grow in our sense of ecclesial belonging;
Interprovincial collaboration, in the different geographical areas of provinces and delegations, to grow in mutual knowledge and increase the sense of unity in the Order;
Collaboration with the professional world of health and illness, in order to grow in our training by acquiring skills, finalising an increasingly qualified service for the sick person;
Sharing structures, resources and projects, overcoming the often short-sighted vision of personal projects or small elites, to free ourselves from personal identifications with such realities that in the end instead of releasing new ideas and healthy energies, force us into increasingly outdated existential and ministerial frameworks.
A Camillian Order, therefore, is synodal:
grows in love and witness of faith to the extent that it places at the centre of its life and all pastoral action the assiduous listening to the Word of God prayed and lived individually and communally;
with the ear of his heart he listens – sharing them – to the joys and hopes, the sorrows and anxieties of the men and women of today, of the poor above all – who are the flesh of Christ – and of all those who suffer;
is set in an attitude of missionary outreach and, in its various components, walks together in a sober fraternal style;
listens to the voice of the laity not by concession, but by right, stimulating and promoting the maturation of the bodies of participation in the choices and ministry of mercy;
looks at today’s world – especially in the field of health, medicine, bioethics, etc. – with discernment but with sympathy, without fear, without prejudice, with courage, in the manner of God who, feeling the pains, joys and hopes of humanity as his own, “came down” to set it free (Ex 3:7-8);
It knows how to equip itself with tools and structures that foster dialogue and interaction between all actors, assuming responsibility for proclaiming the Gospel of Life in a new way, more in keeping with a profoundly changed world and culture of life.
I do not really like the image of the “ford” attributed to the Church, and in a translated sense to our Camillian Order, if this means that we are like those who are far from the banks, insecure, perhaps afraid of drowning. Instead, I prefer the expression used by the Second Vatican Council, quoting St Augustine: “The Church “continues her pilgrimage amidst the persecutions of the world and the consolations of God”, proclaiming the passion and death of the Lord until he comes”.
The real “other shore”, the place of landing, is not a new layout, new structures, the assumption of new pastoral strategies: it is the encounter with the Coming One. Our Camillian Order also lives its pilgrimage through time with hope and facing the various passages with confidence, convinced that every passage, and even every difficulty, is an opportunity to grow in fidelity to the Lord and the Gospel, in the concrete mediation offered by our specific charism.
It is difficult to say how we will be in the future. We will probably be less numerous – at least in some geographical contexts that have traditionally been generators of Camillian history! – perhaps even less driven by tradition but more driven by conviction, more concerned with our charismatic coherence than with our assertion in history.
I believe that any true renewal of our Camillian communities stems from a more intense recognition of the centrality of Jesus, the Good Samaritan, in our personal and community life.
Even our Order, a living part of the Church, like every ecclesial reality, is a polyhedron with many faces and the forms it can take over time are different, but everything always comes from Jesus Christ and must always lead to Jesus Christ.
Message of the Holy Father Francis for the XXXI World Day of the Sick [11 February 2023].
“Take care of him”. Compassion as a synodal healing exercise
Dear brothers and sisters!
Illness is part of our human experience. But it can become inhuman if it is experienced in isolation and abandonment, if it is not accompanied by care and compassion. When walking together, it is normal for someone to feel ill, to have to stop because of fatigue or some incident along the way. It is there, in those moments, that we can see how we are walking: whether it is truly a walking together, or whether we are on the same path but each one on his own, looking after his own interests and leaving the others to ‘make do’. Therefore, on this XXXI World Day of the Sick, in the midst of a synodal journey, I invite you to reflect on the fact that it is precisely through the experience of frailty and illness that we can learn to walk together in God’s style, which is closeness, compassion and tenderness.
In the Book of the Prophet Ezekiel, in a great oracle that constitutes one of the high points of the whole of Revelation, the Lord speaks thus: ‘I myself will lead my sheep to pasture, and I will make them rest. Oracle of the Lord God. I will go in search of the lost sheep and bring the stray one back into the fold, I will bind up the wounded one and heal the sick one, […] I will shepherd them righteously’ (34:15-16). The experience of bewilderment, sickness and weakness are naturally part of our journey: they do not exclude us from God’s people, on the contrary, they bring us to the centre of the attention of the Lord, who is Father and does not want to lose even one of his children along the way. It is therefore a matter of learning from Him, to truly be a community that walks together, capable of not letting itself be infected by the culture of discarding.
The Encyclical Brothers All, as you know, proposes a topical reading of the parable of the Good Samaritan. I chose it as a pivot, as a turning point, to be able to come out of the “shadows of a closed world” and “think and generate an open world” (cf. no. 56). There is indeed a deep connection between this parable of Jesus and the many ways in which fraternity is denied today. In particular, the fact that the battered and robbed person is abandoned along the road, represents the condition in which too many of our brothers and sisters are left when they most need help. Distinguishing which assaults on life and its dignity come from natural causes and which are caused by injustice and violence is not easy. In fact, the level of inequalities and the prevalence of the interests of the few now affect every human environment to such an extent that it is difficult to consider any experience as ‘natural’. All suffering takes place in a ‘culture’ and among its contradictions.
What is important here, however, is to recognise the condition of loneliness, of abandonment. It is an atrocity that can be overcome before any other injustice, because – as the parable recounts – all it takes to eliminate it is a moment of attention, the inner movement of compassion. Two passers-by, considered religious, see the wounded man and do not stop. The third, however, a Samaritan, one who is the object of scorn, is moved with compassion and takes care of that stranger on the road, treating him as a brother. In doing so, without even thinking about it, he changes things, he generates a more brotherly world.
Brothers, sisters, we are never ready for sickness. And often not even to admit advancing age. We fear vulnerability and the pervasive market culture pushes us to deny it. For fragility there is no room. And so evil, when it bursts in and assaults us, leaves us stunned. It can happen, then, that others abandon us, or that it seems to us that we must abandon them, so as not to feel a burden towards them. Thus begins the loneliness, and we are poisoned by the bitter sense of injustice for which even Heaven seems to close in. Indeed, we struggle to remain at peace with God when our relationship with others and with ourselves is ruined. This is why it is so important, also with regard to illness, that the whole Church measures itself against the evangelical example of the Good Samaritan, in order to become a valid ‘field hospital’: its mission, in fact, particularly in the historical circumstances we are going through, is expressed in the exercise of care. We are all fragile and vulnerable; we all need that compassionate attention that knows how to stop, approach, heal and lift. The plight of the sick is therefore an appeal that interrupts indifference and slows the pace of those who advance as if they had no sisters and brothers.
The World Day of the Sick, in fact, does not only call for prayer and proximity towards the suffering; it also aims to sensitise the people of God, healthcare institutions and civil society to a new way of moving forward together. The prophecy of Ezekiel quoted at the beginning contains a very harsh judgement on the priorities of those who exercise economic, cultural and governmental power over the people: ‘You feed yourselves with milk, you clothe yourselves with wool, you kill the fattest sheep, but you do not shepherd the flock. You have not made the weak sheep strong, you have not healed the infirm, you have not bandaged the wounded, you have not brought back the lost. You have not gone in search of the lost, but you have led them astray with cruelty and violence” (34:3-4). The Word of God is always illuminating and contemporary. Not only in its denunciation, but also in its proposal. The conclusion of the parable of the Good Samaritan, in fact, suggests to us how the exercise of fraternity, initiated by a face-to-face encounter, can be extended to organised care. The inn, the innkeeper, the money, the promise to keep each other informed (cf. Lk 10:34-35): all this makes us think of the ministry of priests, the work of health and social workers, the commitment of family members and volunteers thanks to whom, every day, in every part of the world, good opposes evil.
The pandemic years have increased our sense of gratitude for those who work every day for health and research. But it is not enough to emerge from such a great collective tragedy by honouring heroes. Covid-19 put this great network of skills and solidarity to the test and showed the structural limits of existing welfare systems. Therefore, gratitude must be matched by actively seeking, in each country, strategies and resources so that every human being is guaranteed access to care and the fundamental right to health.
“Take care of him” (Lk 10:35) is the recommendation from the Samaritan to the innkeeper. Jesus also repeats it to each one of us, and at the end he exhorts us: ‘Go and do likewise’. As I emphasised in Brothers All, ‘the parable shows us with what initiatives a community can be rebuilt starting from men and women who make the fragility of others their own, who do not allow a society of exclusion to be built, but who make themselves neighbours and lift up and rehabilitate the fallen man, so that the good may be common’ (n. 67). In fact, “we were made for the fullness that can only be reached in love. To live indifferently in the face of pain is not an option’ (no. 68).
Even on 11 February 2023, we look to the Shrine of Lourdes as a prophecy, a lesson entrusted to the Church at the heart of modernity. It is not only what works and it is not only who produces that counts. Sick people are at the centre of God’s people, advancing with them as a prophecy of a humanity in which everyone is precious and no one is to be discarded.
To the intercession of Mary, Health of the Sick, I entrust each one of you who are sick; you who care for them in the family, through work, research and voluntary work; and you who are committed to weaving personal, ecclesial and civil bonds of fraternity. To all I cordially send my Apostolic Blessing.
Rome, Saint John Lateran, 10 January 2023.
Appeal to help and support humanitarian initiatives for the survivors of the recent earthquake in Syria and Turkey
MILLIONS OF POOR AND SUFFERING SURVIVORS IN TURKEY AND SYRIA AWAIT YOUR ‘HUNDRED ARMS’ AND YOUR ‘HANDS FULL OF HEART’
It has been a week since this year’s most devastating earthquake, on 6 February 2023, killed more than 20,000 Turks and Syrians, most of whom were the poorest caught in the middle of the region’s war and severe political crisis. Freezing temperatures, snowfall and damaged roads hampered the frantic search and rescue efforts of survivors trapped under collapsed buildings.
According to reports, the tremors destroyed more than 2,800 buildings in Turkey. The epicentre was in Gaziantep, home to millions of Syrian refugees, just outside the regional capital. The earthquake added further suffering along the border, an area besieged by the nearly 12-year Syrian conflict and the refugee crisis. Turkey hosts the largest number of refugees in the world, some 3.6 million Syrians, according to the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), which runs one of its largest operations from Gaziantep.
Hundreds of thousands of people in both countries were left homeless in the middle of winter. Many camped out in makeshift shelters, car parks, mosques, roadsides or among the ruins, often desperate for food, water and warmth. Priorities include access to clean water, sanitation and hygiene (WASH), health care, shelter, psychosocial support and protection, and material supplies such as tents, beds and blankets.
The children affected by the earthquake are now extremely vulnerable and at risk. Hundreds of thousands are now homeless, separated from their families, exposed to disease and at risk of exploitation such as child labour and trafficking. Humanitarian needs were already extremely severe in northwest Syria and this catastrophic earthquake has added trauma to the ongoing crisis. Health facilities were already poorly equipped and unable to meet the needs and some were destroyed. Some members of the affected families suffered the physical and mental impact of the earthquake. Countless survivors need medication for other illnesses such as hypertension, diabetes, respiratory diseases, cancer and others. Pregnant women are at risk of miscarriage and other complications.
Once again, we appeal to your generosity. Listen to the groans and the call of these most vulnerable people. The real suffering is here, and we are all called to listen to the “cries of the anawim”. CADIS International has established contact with the Franciscan Capuchin community and CARITAS Turkiye (Istanbul). We are making an ongoing assessment of the situation, especially in places that do not receive much help from public and private organisations.
In light of this situation and the preparedness to intervene and collaborate to bring assistance to survivors, we ask for your financial support. It is an urgent need at this time. Please share this mission, our mission, and respond promptly to the cries of the survivors.
Please make a donation to our emergency fund:
ACCOUNT: Camillian Disaster Service International Foundation – CADIS
ADDRESS: Piazza della Maddalena, 53 – 00186 Rome
BANK NAME: DEUTSCHE BANK
IBAN: IT13T 03104 03202 00000 08402 70
ADDRESS: Largo di Torre Argentina, 4, 00186 Rome
We thank you in advance for your great support and generosity. Please keep the survivors and rescuers in your prayers. We will keep you updated on the latest events on the ground.
May the good Lord keep you always in his heart and, through the intercession of St Camillus de Lellis, may you always enjoy the blessing of health.
CADIS – 2 February 2023
2 FEBRUARY 2023: CADIS INTERNATIONAL INVITES TO THE SCREENING OF THE FILM ‘THE LETTER – A MESSAGE FOR THE EARTH’.
On 2 February 2023, CADIS International – on the occasion of the World Day of Consecrated Life and in memory of the conversion of St. Camillus de Lellis – sent brethren, collaborators and benefactors to the screening of the film ‘The letter – a message for the earth’, at the St. Camillus de Lellis Parish Basilica in Rome.
Pope Francis, in 2015, authored the encyclical letter Laudato Si’ focused on the environmental crisis and addressed to every single person in the world. Four years later, the voices of Senegal, the Amazon, India and Hawaii – still unheard – were invited to an unprecedented dialogue with the Pope. The documentary ‘The Letter’ is the story of their journey to the Pope and all the experiences between Rome and Assisi: many personal stories and scientific information about the planetary crisis and its impact on nature and people.
An introspective – but at the same time technical – journey towards a greater awareness of the fact that it is no longer possible to continue ignoring the cry of the Earth, but that action must be taken!
CADIS – Launching post-emergency phase Ukraine
Refugee assistance is moving from the emergency phase to the adaptation and integration phase.
The main goal is to help the 1,000 Ukrainian refugees gradually adapt and integrate into Polish society. By the end of the project, specific outcomes are expected: refugees have settled into a regular apartment, are engaged in part-time or full-time jobs or self-entrepreneurship, and children (ages 2-6) are attending kindergarten and elementary education from age 7 and up.
Since March 2022, CADIS, with the collaboration of the Buddhist Tzu Chi Charity Foundation (BTCCF) and the Camillians in Poland, mobilized the emergency response in Poland when the Russian-Ukrainian crisis broke out on February 24, 2022.
SALUTE E SVILUPPO IN BURKINA FASO TO CULTIVATE VALUE
For more than 25 years now, Salute e Sviluppo has been intervening in developing countries to bring benefits to the local population through implementation and sustainable development projects. The areas of intervention are varied: from health – in the footsteps of St. Camillus de Lellis – to education or agribusiness development.
In this 2023, SeS has decided to inaugurate a new challenge in Burkina Faso: the project “Cultivating Value: good practices and innovative methods for inclusive and sustainable agro-livestock production” .
Camillians in ARGENTINA
On 22nd January 2023, in Buenos Aires, the novice Enzo Hernan Maximiliano Vargas professed his first vows in our Camillian Order. The beautiful celebration was presided over by His Excellency Monsignor Juan Carlos, Auxiliary Bishop of Buenos Aires, and was attended by a number of Camillian religious from Brazil, Chile, Peru and Argentina and the Lay Camillian Family of Argentina.
Camillini in INDONESIA
FLORES/INDONESIA: two new priests and three new deacons for the Camillians
On Sunday 29th January 2022, the Camillian religious of Indonesia experienced a day of joy and gratitude to the Lord for the ordination of two new priests – Arnoldus Silvanus, Silvester Naikofi – and three new deacons – Andrea Yobe, Bonefonsius Boli Lolan, Dionisius Juang.
Presiding over the liturgy of ordination in the chapel of the Camillian Seminary of Nita, Maumere, was the bishop of the diocese of Maumere, Mgr. Edwaldus Martinus Sedu, with the participation of some thirty priests including the Provincial Superior of the Philippine Province with two councillors, the Camillian delegate superiors of Taiwan and Australia and about a thousand guests including relatives, friends and religious from the various institutes present in the diocese. The three and a half hour ceremony was experienced with lively emotion especially by the two new priests and their parents and relatives who did not spare tears of joy.
After some thirteen years of presence in Indonesia, the Camillians now have eight local priests, four deacons, twenty-four professed, four novices and fifty-four philosophy seminarians including four Pakistanis and one from East Timor.
While maintaining the formation of seminarians as their main objective, they also devote special efforts to social and charitable activities on behalf of hundreds of children from poor families and freeing dozens of mentally ill people who are chained or in a state of isolation in the total absence of any medical care. Added to this is the pastoral service in some hospitals and the valuable weekly visits to the sick in the parishes.
At present, the time also seems to have come for St. Camillus’ charism of proclaiming the Gospel to other countries. In fact, two priests will be sent as missionary chaplains to Australia and the Philippines respectively. The Lord truly performs His extraordinary wonders: in just a few years the Camillians can now send their missionaries to other countries of the world. All this surely honours the Church, the Order of St. Camillus and the Camillians in Indonesia. Dreaming and hoping for a future of further good is never forbidden for them.
Camillians in BRAZIL
On January 31, 2023, young candidates Gutemberg Ribeiro and Fernando Vieira began their novitiate journey in the community of Cotia – São Paulo.
On February 11, at the parish of Our Lady of Bethlehem, in Descalvado (Brazil), the priestly ordination of Fr. Danilo Servilha Rizzi, through the laying on of hands and prayer of Bishop Jose Roberto Fortes Palau, bishop of Limeira – São Paulo.
The celebration was attended by a large number of priests and diocesan priests, religious, family members, friends and the faithful of parish.
During the visit of the Provincial Superior, Fr. Mateus Locatelli, to the Camillian community of Lagoa Redonda in Fortaleza, Ceará, Prof. Genildo Guarino renewed his temporary vows and was instituted in the ministries of lector and acolyte.
During the visit of Provincial Superior, Fr. Mateus Locatelli, to the Camillian community of Belo Horizonte, Minas Gerais, young religious, Matheus and Jacy renewed their temporary professions.
Camillians in VIETNAM
On Saturday 11 February 2023, feast of Our Lady of Lourdes and World Day of the Sick, in Vietnam, in Ho Chi Minh City, six young brothers, Joseph Tran Quoc Khai, Joseph Le Ngoc Sang, Peter Le Hung Anh, Peter Nguyen Tuan Anh, Peter Hoang Minh Phuc, Joseph Pham Quang Hiep made their solemn religious profession!
Camillians in PERU
With joy, the Camillian Brothers of the Vice Province of Peru announce that Elkin Monteza Rivera, Alex Fernández Cueva and Abraham Corimanya Romero have made their first profession of religious vows, at the end of the novitiate!
Camillians in BURKINA FASO and in HAITI
On 2 February, the Feast of the Presentation of Jesus in the Temple and a day dedicated to all consecrated men and women, in Burkina Faso, the diaconal ordination of some young Camillian brothers from the Burkinabé province and the delegation in Haiti was solemnly celebrated.
Camillians in BENIN-TOGO
On 4th March 2023, the confreres of the Benin-Togo province, together with the confreres of the Sicilian-Napolitan ‘mother’ province will give thanks to the Lord, celebrating the 50th anniversary (1973-2023) of the Camillian presence in Beninese and Togolese lands! Our Superior General, Fr. Pedro Tramontin, and some members of the Order’s General Council will also be present at the celebration.
Camillians in MACCHIA – SAN GIOVANNI ROTONDO – ‘VALLEY OF THE INFERNO’
On Saturday 4 February and Sunday 5 February 2023, Fr. Pedro Tramontin, Superior General of the Order, took part in the celebrations commemorating the anniversary of the conversion of St. Camillus (2 February 1575) organised with care and devotion by the Camillian brethren of the Siculo-Napoletana province, in Manfredonia and San Giovanni Rotondo, and in particular, in the Valley of Hell, the traditional place where the event of the conversion is contextualised.
BY THE GENERAL COUNCIL
Canonical erection of a new Camillian house-community
The Superior General, having seen the request presented by Fr Evan Paul A. Villanueva, Provincial Superior of the Province of the Philippines and the Delegate Superior in Indonesia, has canonically erected the new Camillian community-house ‘Saint Camillus Social Centre‘ located in Misir, Maumere (Flores) INDONESIA.
Deceased Camillian Religious
“Come, ye blessed of my Father! Receive your inheritance the kingdom that my Father has given you, prepared since the creation of the world; for I was hungry and you gave me food; I was thirsty and you gave me drink; I was a stranger and you welcomed me; I was naked and you clothed me; I was sick and you cured me; I was in prison and you visited me”. (Mt 25:34-36)
The Camillian Brothers of the Austrian Province announce the death of the Camillian religious Father LEONHARD GREGOTSCH (birth: 23/09/1933; temporary profession: 08/12/1951; solemn profession: 15/07/1955; priestly ordination: 29/06/1957).
P. LEONHARD died on Sunday 12 February 2023, in Vienna (Austria). Let us remember Fr LEONHARD in our prayers, entrusting him to the mercy of the Risen Lord!
SONS OF SAN CAMILLO – deceased religious sisters
Official prayer to ask for the intercession of Blessed Luigi Tezza on the centenary of his death (1923/2023)
Lord God, Creator and Father, to you our gratitude for the life, vocation and holiness of Blessed Louis Tezza, whom we venerate on the centenary of his transit to heaven.
Help us to cherish and actualise the grateful memory of the testimony of faith: ‘all in God, all for God, all with God’.
Lord God, Redeemer Son, to you our gratitude for the passion for the Kingdom of God that burned in the soul and works of Blessed Louis.
Help us to discern and creatively imitate the witness of love: ‘prepared for charity to make ever more painful sacrifices, especially towards the sick poor’.
Lord God, Holy Spirit, to you our gratitude for the trusting abandonment that Blessed Louis nurtured daily in the work of your Providence.
Help us to live, even in the night of trial, the testimony of hope: ‘God knows what he does, and he does everything for good, let us be led by his ever-loving will’.
May he who touched bodies, with Samaritan compassion, to touch their souls, with motherly care, intercede with God, the gift of embodying the Gospel of mercy so that from our hearts and hands flows ‘generosity in every moment and in the smallest details of life’.
Well, omnia fecit!
N.B.: Please note, in the event of any errors, the English-French-Spanish translations are carried out with the DEEPL automatic translator.