(Feast of St. Martin of Tours)
Today, as has been announced, the election of the General Council took place, with all six Consultors now elected and getting used to the shock! Many confreres commented on the harmonious atmosphere in the hall as delegates sought to find the best candidates for this task of leadership.
The Chapter Moderators also began the process of voting on proposals and postulata that have been deliberated on in the small groups. Several proposals and one postulatum were chosen because they seemed to have good support from the small group summaries. Each proposal (I will talk about the postulatum in a moment) was presented for open discussion to the entire assembly, discussed, and then late in the afternoon presented for acceptance or rejection by the Chapter.
If you have Working Document C, the proposals that were discussed and then passed, all from section 2, Renewed Mission, were the following:
2.3 – Proposal #1 A mandate to the General Government to update the Plan of Community Life for use by each community.
2.3 – Proposal #2 A life-style audit proposed by the Commission on Economic Solidarity for use in the communities was approved for regular review in the communities of the living of the vows, especially that of poverty.
The Postulatum (#7 B in section 2.3) that opened up the most interesting conversation was the proposal that confreres may remain in the same community for no more than two consecutive terms. On the one hand, this postulatum was geared towards making confreres less attached to one place and more available for mission. On the other hand, it might prove difficult to implement for those with professional tasks (like teaching at a local university or seminary) or for the elderly, etc. The postulatum did allow for exceptions, adjudicated by the extraordinary provincial council of a unit. But the debate went back and forth. Eventually the postulatum was passed but by a very thin margin.
Other proposals and postulata will have to wait until next week, many of them because of alternative proposals to what was in the Working Document C. It will be a full, full week next week—but there is the weekend first to rest and recuperate.
And we have a weekend to rejoice in God’s guidance in electing our new General Council!
Fr. Mark Miller, CSsR