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Meeting of the Lay Brothers of the North Slavic Conference

Also present the Minister General and the Area Definitor

18 March 2024

On March 12 and 13, in the Marian sanctuary of Kalwaria, near Krakow (Poland), the meeting of Lay Brothers of the North Slavic Conference (SLAN) was held, in which almost 100 brothers from 7 provinces participated. Also present were Fr. Massimo Fusarelli, Minister General, and Fr. Konrad Cholewa, Area Definitor.

An intense moment of prayer, of fraternity and of interaction on how to be brothers and minors in the modern world.

During the meeting we also talked about the Centenary of the Stigmata of St. Francis, very current in Poland, thanks to the presence of the sanctuary of Alwernia, about 36 km [or about 22 miles] from Krakow, which the Franciscan friars built in the 17th century dedicating it to the Stigmata of the Poverello. 

By going as pilgrims to the sanctuary from March 29 (Good Friday) to December 31, 2024, it will be possible to gain a plenary indulgence from the Holy See on the occasion of the 800th anniversary of the Stigmata.  Fr. Massimo, in a video recorded at La Verna during the retreat with the friars of the General Curia, he told the Polish brothers: “I invite you to go as pilgrims to Alwernia and, ideally, to be pilgrims to La Verna, in Tuscany, even going through temptations, hardships, what life holds in store for us, in order to open ourselves to the “new song” of faith and love which the Holy Spirit wants to grow within each of us. In this spirit, may the Lord bless you, move you toward the experience of the Stigmata of Francis and be present in your families, in each of you, with all the Franciscan joy.  Peace and all good – Pokój i Dobro!”

The North Slavic Conference (SLAN) is comprised of 9 entities in 5 countries of Eastern Europe: the provinces of the Assumption BVM, Immaculate Conception BVM, St. Francis of Assisi, St Hedwig and St. Mary of the Angels, all of Poland; the provinces of St. Wenceslaus (Czech Republic), St. Michael the Archangel (Ukraine), Most Holy Savior (Slovakia), and the St. Francis Foundation, in Russia.

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