Comunicato of the General Definitory May 2016

The Minister General and Definitory met at the General Curia for the Tempo Forte of 10th to 20th May 2016. At the beginning of their meeting, the Minister, the Vicar and the Definitors shared in some detail their various experiences since the previous Tempo Forte and took some time to reflect together on the situation of several Entities in different parts of the world and the serious challenges facing them today.

As has become a regular feature of every Tempo Forte, the General Definitory received updates and progress reports from the General Secretariat for Missions and Evangelisation, from the General Secretariat for Formation and Studies, and from the Office of Justice, Peace, and the Integrity of Creation. An update was also received from the General Treasurer’s Office; information was given about some concrete measures already in place to address the current financial situation of the General Curia and a plan for the future.

As always, a great deal of time was devoted to ordinary administrative affairs and a total of 101 files (plichi) were examined during this Tempo Forte. Unfortunately, a significant number of these involved brothers seeking dispensations from vows and from the obligations of priestly ordination, exclaustration, and secularization. A number of those examined at this meeting of the Definitory involved dismissal from the Order.

A number of Provinces and Custodies have been celebrating their Chapter and the Definitory ratified the election of some new Ministers and Custodes. These included:

  • Br. Jozo Marinčić, Minister Provincial of the Province of the Holy Cross, in Bosnia-Herzegovina.
  • Br. Flaerdi Silvestre Valvasori, Custos of the Custody of the Sacred Heart of Jesus, in Brazil.
  • Br. Arturo Daquilanea, Custos of the Custody of St. Anthony, in the Philippines.
  • Br. Cielito R. Almazan, Minister Provincial of the Province of San Pedro Bautista, in the Philippines.
  • Br. Michel Laloux, Minister Provincial of the Province of Blessed John Duns Scotus in France and Belgium.
  • Br. Antonio Tremigliozzi, Minister Provincial of the Province of Santa Maria delle Grazie, in Italy (Benevento).
  • Br. Bernard Jarosław Marciniak, Minister Provincial of the Province of St Francis of Assisi, in Poland.
  • Br. Armindo de Jesus Ferreira Carvalho, Minister Provincial of the Province of the Holy Martyrs of Morocco, in Portugal.
  • Br. František Xaverský Vladimír Olbert, Minister Provincial of the Province of the Most Holy Saviour, in Slovakia.
  • Br. Marjan Čuden, Minister Provincial of the Province of the Holy Cross, in Slovenia.
  • Br. José Antonio Castiñeira Chouza, Minister Provincial of the Province of Santiago de Compostela, in Spain.

In the course of the Tempo Forte, the General Definitory elected the government of two Provinces:

a. For the Province of St. Michael the Archangel, in Italy:
As Minister Provincial: Br Alessandro Mastromatteo
As Vicar Provincial: Br Donato Sardella.
As Provincial Definitors:
Br. Fulgenzio Corcelli ; Br. Vincenzo Dituri; Br. Teofilo Iasenza; Br. Giancarlo Li Quadri Cassini; Br. Roberto Nesta

b. For the new Province of St. Anthony of the Friars Minor, in Italy:
As Minister Provincial: Br Mario Favretto
As Vicar Provincial: Br Mario Vaccari
As Provincial Definitors: Br. Enzo Maggioni; Br. Alberto Tosini; Br. Giampaolo Possenti; Br. Lorenzo Raniero; Br. Mauro Galesini; Br. Maggiorino Stoppa; Br. Marco Tommasi

The General Definitory also elected by postulation Br. Francesco Patton, of the Province of St. Anthony, in Italy (formerly Minister Provincial of the Province of St. Vigilius, in Italy), to the office of Custos of the Holy Land, and Guardian of Mount Sion.

The Definitory elected a number of Visitators General who will visit the Provinces in the coming year:

  • Br. Czeslaw Gniecki, of the Province of the Immaculate Conception of the BVM, in Poland, as Visitator of the Province of St Mary of the Angels, also in Poland.
  • Br. Roger Marchal, of the Province of Blessed John Duns Scotus, in France and Belgium, as Visitator of the Province of St. Leopold, in Austria and Italy.
  • Br. Mario Rafael Toro Puerta, of the Province of St. Paul the Apostle, in Colombia, as Visitator General of the Province of Saints Peter and Paul, in Mexico.
  • Br. Carlos Guillermo Paz Guzman, of the Province of St. Francis Solanus, in Argentina, as Visitator General of the Province of the Most Holy Trinity, in Chile.
  • Br. Wanderley Carvalho do Couto, of the Province of the Most Holy Name of Jesus, in Brazil, as Visitator General of the Custody of the Seven Joys of the BVM, also in Brazil.
  • Br. Jeremiaš Kvaka, of the Province of the Most Holy Saviour, in Slovakia, as Visitator General for the Province of St. Wenceslaus, in the Czech Republic.
  • Br. Peter Williams, presently at the service of the Province of the Incarnate Word, in West Africa, as Visitator General for the Province of St. Joseph, in Canada.
  • Br. Esdrasz Biesok, of the Province of the Assumption of the BVM, in Poland, as Visitator General for the Province of the Immaculate Conception of the BVM, also in Poland.

Several Reports submitted by Visitators General were received and studied by the Definitory, but due to the pressures of time, the full discussion of these was deferred to the Tempo Forte of July. The consideration of several Particular Statutes was similarly deferred.

As pointed out in the bulletin following the Tempo Forte of March, the General Chapter 2015 decided that study guides be prepared for certain matters, including a guide to living “as poor and lesser ones” (decision n. 8), and a guide to “the care of creation”. During this Tempo Forte of May, the final text of both study guides was approved. It is hoped that the guides will be published later in the year, once the translation into various languages has been completed.

Most of the second week of the Tempo Forte was devoted to the annual meeting of the General Definitory with the Presidents of the Conferences of Ministers and Custodes. Information about some matters was shared with them on the understanding that this in turn will be communicated to the members of each Conference.

The next Tempo forte is due to begin on 4th July 2016.

31st May 2016

Aidan McGrath ofm
Secretary General