The LVII General Chapter: the Report of 14 May 2013

JesusAnother day characterised by discussion of the amendments proposed to the Constitution and the General Statutes: this is the refrain of the last days of the General Chapter, even though various subjects remain on the agenda.

Under the expert guidance of Fr. P. Nava – who was ready to answer every question seeking clarification so as to help everyone’s understanding – the work of studying the proposed variations and their approval continued apace and a large part of the articles of the General Statutes are by now behind us.

The participation of the assembly, which was attentive and participatory, even though the work of revision of a statutory organ can at times be monotonous, should be appreciated. A sign of true participation in the life of the Order at a moment when it is called to adapt its juridical instruments to a changing world.

One of the most intense moments was the election of the members of the General Consulta. Today was the turn of the Vicar General, the first helper of the Superior General. Preceded by an indicative vote designed to provide an indication of tendencies, at 18.00 the Superior General opened the voting with the ritual prayer, invoking the Holy Spirit to guide them in discernment. On the second ballot Fr. P. Guarise, formerly Consultor for Ministry, was elected. After receiving the embraces of the members of the General Chapter, he confirmed his availability to continue to serve the Order by giving his total support to the Superior General. In his service he said that he would commit himself to work with each religious trying to construct greater unity in the Order. For his part, Fr. Salvatore greeted the new Vicar General and addressed emotional words to the previous Vicar General, Fr. Ruiz, who received a standing ovation from the assembly.

Lastly, the members of the General Chapter celebrated the birthday of Fr. Pessini, the Provincial of the Province of Brazil: the first of a series of celebrations to take place during the days of the General Chapter!