“To renew our mission and embrace our future as brothers and minors, as Animation Offices of the General Curia with Br Darko Tepert, OFM, General Secretariat for Formation and Studies, Br Francisco Gómez, OFM, General Secretariat for the Missions and Evangelisation, and Br Jaime Campos, OFM, of the Office of Justice, Peace and Integrity of Creation (JPIC), we decided to deepen our work of collaboration both within the Curia and in the service we offer to the Entities of the Order”. This is from the website for the animation for Justice, Peace and Integrity of Creation of our Order and, in this sense, they participated jointly in the meeting of the Franciscan Bolivarian Conference that brought together the Ministers Provincial of Colombia, Ecuador, Peru, Bolivia and the Custos of Venezuela, in Colombia, from 21 to 25 February 2022.

“It was an opportunity to get to know the reality that the provinces of this Conference experience, but also to promote collaboration between the provinces themselves and the respective offices of each province,” said Br Darko. “As Secretary for Formation and Studies, I raised the theme of Franciscan identity, which is also important because of how it was treated at the last General Chapter. This theme included the start of preparations for the Conference’s Congress of Lay Friars and then for the International Congress of Lay Friars in 2025”.

“We presented the Guidelines and the Ratio Evangelizations of our Secretariat for the six years, intending to work together as Secretariats,” said Br Francisco of the Secretariat for Missions and Evangelisation. He noted that this meeting was also the first of its kind, hoping that it might be extended to the other Conferences of the Order.

The Animators of the General Offices met all the Provincials and the Secretaries of the specific areas of competence within the Bolivarian Conference. The Bolivarian Conference includes the two provinces of Colombia, Santa Fe and San Pablo, the Ecuadorian Province of San Francisco, the two Peruvian provinces of the XII Apostles and San Francisco Solano, the Missionary Province of San Antonio in Bolivia and the Venezuelan Custody of the Immaculate Conception.