Comunicato Tempo Forte

A note from the Secretary General:
Some technical problem prevented me from sending this communication for translation for the past few months. For that I apologize most sincerely. I thought I had it sorted out after the January Tempo Forte, but alas – it still did not happen. So now, here are three briefings:

December 2014

The General Definitory met between 15th and 19th December 2014. After receiving updated information concerning the economic situation of the Order, the Definitory approved the text of the letter sent by the Minister General to all the Entities of the Order and published on the Order’s website.

With the General Chapter approaching, the Secretary and Assistant Secretary kept the Definitory informed of the latest developments concerning the materials to be distributed to the capitulars and possible adjustments to the programme already approved.

The usual administrative work of the Definitory meeting included the study of some 46 files (plichi)  from around the Order. The situation of some Entities remains a matter of concern. These were reviewed. Some of them will be addressed before the General Chapter; others will be referred to the incoming General government with certain recommendations.

Two General Visitators were elected in this last Tempo Forte of 2014:

–       Br Sandro Overend, of the Province of St Paul the Apostle, in Malta, was elected as Visitator for the Province of St Casimir, in Lithuania.

–       Br Wanderley Gomes De Figueiredo, of the Custody of the Seven Joys, in Brazil, was elected as Visitator for the Province of the Holy Cross, also in Brazil.

In the course of the Tempo Forte, the first government of the new Province of the Immaculate Conception in Spain was elected. This government was to be communicated to the Inaugural Chapter of the Province on 1st January 2015. The Minister Provincial of the Province is Br Juan Carlos Moya Ovejero, until then the Minister Provincial of the Province of St Joseph (Valencia). The new Province is composed of the former Provinces of Betica (Seville); Cartagena (Murcia); St Gregory the Great (Madrid); St Salvator of Horta (Barcelona); Our Lady of the Rule (Granada); St Joseph (Valencia); and the former Custody of St Francis Solanus, dependent on the Province of St Francis Solanus, in Peru.

At the end of the week, the Tempo Forte finished with an exchange of greetings between all present, with the wish of a Happy Christmas and a Happy New Year.

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January 2015

The first meeting of the General Definitory in 2015 took place at the General Curia from 12th to 30th January. The last two weeks of this meeting coincided, as it does every year, with the gathering of the new Ministers Provincial and Custodes. This year 28 Ministers and Custodes took part.

On the agenda for this meeting was the erection of a new Province: St Mary of the Angels, in the Democratic Republic of the Congo. This was the fruit of a process that has lasted several years. The Definitory elected as the first Minister Provincial of the new Province Br Kateta Grégoire Bowa. The new Province was to be inaugurated by the Minister General in February at a special Assembly of the friars in the Democratic Republic of the Congo.

The usual sharing of various activities and experiences by the Minister and Definitors took place, including some things that had taken place after the Tempo Forte of November. Another 46 files (plichi) were examined and the appropriate decisions taken.

With regard to the General Chapter, due to information received from some of the outside speakers, slight alterations had to be made to the programme. The Secretary and Assistant Secretary once more kept the Definitory up to date with the progress in practical and logistical arrangements.

Further updates on the economic situation were received and the budget for 2015 of the General Curia and the houses dependent on the Minister General was presented and approved, showing a considerable reduction by comparison with recent years in view of the current crisis.

A number of General Visitators were elected. These included:

–       Br Michael Woo, of the Province of Our Lady, Queen of China, in Taiwan, was elected as Visitator for an Entity dependent on the Minister General.

–       Br Paul Oh, of the Province of the Holy Korean Martyrs, in Korea, was elected as Visitator for the Province of Our Lady, Queen of China, in Taiwan.

–       Br Pierre Charland, of the Province of St Joseph, in Canada, was elected as Visitator for the Province of Blessed John Duns Scotus, in France and Belgium.

–       Br. Alexis Trần Đúc Hải, of the Province of St Francis of Assisi, in Vietnam, was elected as Visitator for the Province of St Thomas the Apostle, in India.

–       Br Iko Skoko, of the Province of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary, in Bosnia (Mostar), was elected as Visitator for the Province of the Holy Cross, in Bosnia (Sarajevo).

–       Br Giacinto D’Angelo, of the Province of the Immaculate Conception (Salerno), in Italy, was elected as Visitator for Collegio S. Isidoro, Rome, a fraternity dependent on the Minister General.

–       Br Saul Zamorano, of the Province of the Most Holy Trinity, in Chile, was elected as Visitator for the Fraternity of the Blessed Gabriel Allegra, Rome, a fraternity dependent on the Minister General.

–       Br Gilles Bourdeau, of the Province of St Joseph, in Canada, was elected as Visitator for the Fraternity of the General Curia in Rome.

During the course of the Tempo Forte, a number of canonical matters were considered and referred to the Juridical Commission of the Order. These included amendments to and interpretations of the particular statutes of some Entities.

The reports of a number of General Visitators were also considered:

–       The report of Br Piet Bots concerning his visit of the Custody of St Francis, Herald of Peace, in Indonesia.

–       The report of Br Edward Tlucek concerning his visit of the Province, now the Custody the Immaculate Conception of the Blessed Virgin Mary, in Great Britain.

–       The report of Br Estêvão Ottenbreit concerning his visit of the Province of St Anthony, in Brazil.

–       The report of Br Guido Zegarra concerning his visit of the Province of Our Lady of Guadalupe, in Central America, Panama and Haiti.

 

 

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march 2015

The General Definitory met between 9th and 19th March 2015 in its last full Tempo Forte prior to the General Chapter. After the usual sharing about their activities since the previous meeting, the Definitors received the annual report of the Procura Generale concerning all the dealings of the Order with the Holy See.

With the help of Br William Short and Br Sergiusz Bałdyga, the Definitory reviewed the progress of preparations for the General Chapter. Some minor technical and logistical arrangements were updated and information was shared about the participation of certain invited guests.

The economic situation of the General Curia was reviewed with the assistance of Br Pasquale del Pezzo, General Delegate for Economic Affairs, Br Augusto Micangeli, Legal Representative, and Br Silvio De La Fuente, Assistant General Bursar. The question of the form and content of the report to be presented at the General Chapter was discussed and decided.

During the two weeks of the meeting, a total of 49 files (plichi) from around the Order were examined and discussed by the General Definitory. The contents of these files ranged from ratification of extra-capitular elections to requests for dispensations from vows, and from requests to be re-admitted to the Order to the establishment of a novitiate.

Since many Provinces postponed their Provincial Chapters that were due to take place in 2015 in accordance with the mandate of General Chapter 2009 (Mandate n. 49), quite a number of General Visitators were elected during this Tempo Forte. These included the following:

–       Br Samuel Cegłowski, of the Province of St Hedwig, in Poland, was elected as Visitator for the Province of St Michael the Archangel in Ukraine.

–       Br Dominik Daniel Valer, of the Province of St Wenceslaus, in the Czech Republic, was elected as Visitator for the Province of the Most Holy Saviour, in Slovakia.

–       Br Witosław Sztyk, of the Province of the Assumption of the BVM, in Poland, was elected as Visitator for the Province of St Francis of Assisi, also in Poland.

–       Br Marko Mrše, of the Province of the Most Holy Redeemer, in Croatia, was elected as Visitator for the Province of the Holy Cross, in Slovenia.

–       Br Joxé María Arregi, of the Province of Arantzazu, in Spain, was elected as Visitator for the Province of Santiago de Compostela, also in Spain.

–       Br German Faustino Tax Bulux, of the Province of Our Lady of Guadalupe, in Central America, Panama and Haiti, was elected Visitator for the Province of St Felipe de Jesus, in Mexico.

–       Br Gergely Magyar, of the Province Magna Domina Hungarorum, in Hungary, was elected Visitator for the Province of St Stephen the King, in Transylvania, Romania.

–       Br Rafael Colomer Barber, of the Province of the Immaculate Conception of the BVM, in Spain, was elected Visitator for the Province of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary, in Argentina.

 

The General Definitory also examined and approved several items of particular legislation. These included:

  1. The Particular Statutes of the Province of Our Lady of Guadalupe, in Central America, Panama, and Haiti.
    1. The Particular Statutes of the Province of Saints Francis and James, in Mexico.
    2. The Particular Statutes of the Province of St John the Baptist, USA.
    3. The Particular Statutes of the Province of the Holy Korean Martyrs, in Korea.
    4. The Transitory Norms for the Chapter of the Union of 6 Provinces in Northern Italy.
    5. The Transitory Norms for the newly erected Province of Saint Mary of the Angels, in the Democratic Republic of the Congo.

 

A number of reports concerning general Visitations already completed were also presented and discussed. These included:

  • The Report of Br Grégoire Kateta Bowa on his visit to the Foundation “Notre Dame d’Afrique” in the Republic of Congo (Brazzaville), which is dependent on the Minister Generale.
  • The Report of Br João Muniz Alves on his visit to the Custody of St Clare in Mozambique.
  • The Report of Br Andrew Brophy on his visit to the Province of the Holy Korean Martyrs, in Korea.
  • The Report of Br Kajetan Kowalski on his visit to the Province of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary, in Poland.

In the course of the Tempo Forte, the General Definitory met with Br John O’Connor  and Br Mario Di Cicco, both appointed as Assistants to the Minister General with responsibility for fund-raising for the Order. They shared something of their experience and their plans for the future. The General Definitory also met for some time with Br Gilles Bourdeau, Visitator General for the General Curia. All present had the opportunity to share with the Visitator their views on the fraternity and the official structures of the General Curia.

A number of brief reports were received from commissions working inside and outside the Order. These concerned a variety of themes, from the functioning of the Pontifical University Antonianum, to the presence of the friars in Turkey. Last, but by no means least, the General Definitory had the pleasure and privilege of voting on the admission of one friar to solemn profession and two to the renewal of temporary profession in the Foundation of Myanmar, and on the admission of one friar to presbyteral ordination within the Foundation of St Francis in Russia and Kazakhstan.

While there will be no further Tempo Forte before the General Chapter, a further meeting of the General Definitory is scheduled for 5th May to deal with any urgent or outstanding matters that need to be addressed.

To all of those who have accompanied these short communications over the past six years, I wish all the blessings of the Risen Christ this Easter and always.

24th March 2015
Aidan McGrath ofm