The Superior General, Fr Rogério Gomes, and the General Council had an online meeting with the Major Superiors of the Spanish, Portuguese, and Italian-speaking Major Superiors from the Units of Latin America and the Caribbean, Africa and Madagascar, and Europe.
The online meeting was for 4 hours each day for 4 days (20th – 21st and 23rd – 24th February). The Meeting was well attended and the participation was very good despite the air of carnival in Latin America. Fr Rogério presented the Sexennial Plan of action of the General Council and invited the confreres to respond with questions and clarifications regarding this plan for the next 6 years. Fr José Carlos, the Procurator General presented a couple of sessions on the important changes in the Code of Canon Law concerning Religious Life in the papacy of Pope Francis. He also had a separate session on Safeguarding of Minors and Vulnerable adults. Fr Alfonso Amarante, the Preside of the Alphonsian Academy gave a presentation on St. Alphonsus, Pastor and Doctor in the context of Leadership today. Other matters discussed were the questions regarding Restructuring and Reconfiguration and how to move forward with regard to the new provinces that will come into existence in this year; the Alphonsian Academy and the Collegio Maggiore; the Priority of the Congregation for Africa and Madagascar and the Fund for the same Conference; and the forthcoming publication of the XXVI General Chapter Documents (Final Message, Decisions, Directives and Document for Study, Reflection and Action). The Major Superiors were invited to send in their questions and clarifications through online chat, email, and WhatsApp. The Online Meeting had its moments of prayer with carefully prepared prayer sessions to open and close and translations in different languages for the participants to follow in their own languages. Fr Rogério thanked the Major Superiors for their active participation and assured them that he and the council would accompany they very closely in the service of animation of their units.
There were 34 Major Superiors, the General Government members, and the Curia officials who actively participated in the meeting. They positively valued it as an effective tool for the ongoing formation of those who carry out the task of animating the Congregation in each Unit. Soon a similar meeting will be held in person with the English-speaking Major Superiors in Rome.
Joseph Ivel Mendanha, C.Ss.R.