21 Dec Ministers General meet for a fraternal gathering at the OFM General Curia
On December 19th, 2020, the Ministers General of the First Order and Third Order Regular met at the OFM General Curia to share a moment of fraternity before Christmas. In the course of the exchange, they spoke at length about their desire that the Church allow us to reclaim the gift of our origins as mixed institutes (Vita Consecrata, Art. 61). They spoke about current challenges and future dreams of our respective Orders, including a recognition of the equal dignity of all the friars and the possibility of equal participation at all levels of service to the brothers. They also remembered the friars who have died or who have become ill due to CoVid-19. They then spoke about some of the different efforts around the Franciscan world to initiate a new beginning through the creation of inter-obediential fraternities (Emmaus in the Holy Land, Rieti and Assisi in Italy, etc.), and through collaborative projects in the areas of Ongoing and Initial Formation, missionary evangelization, and other areas. The Ministers General concluded their time together with prayer in the General Curia chapel.
For the first time ever, the Ministers of the entire Franciscan family published a joint Christmas letter this year, translated into 18 languages. This is a truly positive step towards a future characterized by ever greater communion.