Braking or the foot on the accelerator, what counts is the right speed
2017-05-14 - Lyon
Precipitation (rain) outside Lyon and the region, accelerations on some files inside, in the plenary hall, the Chapter is gaining speed. As the last week of his works opens and the time for choices come. Two days “showered with a rain of grace,” according to one of capitulates.
On Friday, the Assembly devoted itself to the study of two capitulary texts prepared by the ad-hoc committees: the Committee on Assets, Resources and their Management (second reading), and the Committee on Formation at the Assumption (For a first reading). In both cases the exchanges were nourished.
Concerning the formation, the Chapter heard the proposal of the Father General to create a general secretariat to the formation to face the magnitude of the task. The statistics show an increase in the number of young religious in formation (see graphs below). The idea of a secretariat was inspired by the example of the White Fathers, neighbours of the Generalate in Rome. In the case of the Missionaries of Africa, there is a non-clergyman assistant responsible for linking the different places of formation, preparing the appointments for the superior general, having a concern to prepare young people appropriately, their mission in constant dialogue with the trainers, the provincials and the General Curia. At Valpré, the Assembly debate on a possible secretariat for formation for the Assumption showed that this would be a necessary achievement. The outline could be determined at the next CGP (General Plenary Council).
Next, on property, the debate continued on the pooling of resources and autonomy. Father Benoît GRIERE called to re-situate the debate in its perspective: to protect the Congregation and the capital that belongs to it.
The day continued with the election of two general assistants (out of the four expected), including the general treasurer. A highlight presided by the Superior General. Not without first invoking the Holy Spirit to enlighten the choices of the Chapter. At the request of the Superior General, the election took place on the first assistant who will also be general bursar. Br. Didier Remiot was elected. He accepted his election. The Chapter then proceeded to the election of a second assistant general. Fr Marcelo Marciel. He accepted his election.
The President, Fr. Benoît Grière, thanked the Chapter for this act of government, which will continue on Saturday. The two assistants will necessarily be new, since Fr. Emmanuel Kahindo of the two other outgoing assistants is completing his second term and Fr. John Franck has expressed his desire not to hold a second term.
Saturday was rainy and stormy. The capitulates are seated at table. Not in the usual dining room, but in the small rooms provided for practicing a method that proved its worth at the first session of the Chapter of Europe: the world of the cadé (See the Word of the Day). Moving from table to table, the linguistic groups have alternately exchanged, from half-hour to half-hour, on topics proposed by the Coordination. The Spanish group dealt with the postulation, the Anglophones with justice and peace while the three francophone groups tackled parishes, mobilizing works and new foundations. A facilitator and a secretary ensured that the tour of table was running smoothly. Each capitulate had the opportunity to express himself on each of the subjects, writing his point of view on the tablecloth of each table. It is then up to the co-ordinator to define the status of what has been collected as well. The menu looks rich!
On the menu again this day is the study of the community organization of the Congregation. There is first the review of the text. The idea of vicariates is strengthened but the modalities of their implementation are not yet fixed.
A third assistant general was out of the polls that day: Fr. Thierry KAMBALE KAHONGYA. 47 years. He is the first Provincial Assistant of the Province of Africa. The Chapter pauses to select the fourth assistant. The follows time to recharge the batteries!
F. Robert Migliorini, a.a.