FROM THE EDITOR:
ACTIVITIES OF THE GENERAL GOVERNMENT:
Be sure to read through all of this issue of SCALA.
There are three very important announcements in this issue. One is about World Youth Day in Spain and a letter from the Provincial of Madrid giving important information to all Redemptorist youth and C.Ss.R.’s who might be considering attending WYD.
There is also an announcement about the annual Spirituality Workshop in the English language this summer in Italy; and the release of the English translation of Volume I/ii of the History of the Congregation.
The Congregation has been busy with quadrennial unit elections for major superiors. One of the noticeable results of the elections is the trend towards younger leadership in many of our units, many times backed up by older, experienced confreres in the consultor or extraordinary consultor positions. A complete list of current electoral results follows in this issue.
Parish missions have been a strong emphasis in many units this fall. There was an archdiocesan wide Parish Mission in the archdiocese of Archbishop Gerard Pettipas, C.Ss.R of Grourd-McLaren, Canada. Many units of North American contributed preachers to this successful event, which we reported on in the last issue of SCALA. In this issue of SCALA you will find a link to the website of the European Conference, which dedicated several days in October to sharing and discussing the present and future of parish missions in Europe. The website contains some very good information that all Redemptorists may find helpful.
Father Martin Huk of Bratislava informs us that a three day Symposium on the Sacrament of Reconciliation was organized by the province of Poland and took place in Krakow in October. It’s theme was the Sacrament of Reconciliation as the heart of renewal and development in the spiritual life. As Redemptorists, the sacrament is still a very significant ministry of ours and a way to bring redemption to people especially during parish missions, but also in ordinary pastoral ministry. It is also important in our personal spiritual lives.
30 Redemptorists from the Provinces of Poland and Prague as well as the Vice Provinces of Bratislava and Michalovce participated in and enjoyed the well prepared program. Different talks on various perspectives on reconciliation (pastoral, bioethics, psychology, spirituality) were given by well known speakers such as Fr. Augustin SJ, Fr. Boloz, Fr. Fryzel, Fr. Zagrotsky, C.Ss.R., Fr. Sliwinski, OFMcap, and Ms. Alicia Furmanik. Some articles were published in the Redemptorist Polish magazine Homo Dei.
The Symposium was a boost to celebrating this sacrament, especially as a continuation of the emphasis on confession that St. Alphonsus, patron of confessors, has given us.
Thank you to Father Bryan Arriola of the Vice Province of San Salvador for a reprise of last year’s “Alphonsus & the Bambino” drawing at the conclusion of this issue of SCALA. With it is an audio button that you may click on to listen to Andrea Bocelli singing Tu Scendi dalle Stelle. May the coming of the Christ Child bring…
Grace and Redemption for All!
World Youth Day, Madrid, 2011
Dear Brothers: My fraternal greetings and my best wishes in your pastoral work.
World Youth Day, which will be celebrated in Madrid in August 2011, is approaching. We know that there will be a lot of young people who will be coming to Madrid to take part in the ecclesial celebration with Benedict XVI present; they are estimating about two million young people will attend.
Also, there will be young people associated with the Redemptorist family and their respective chaperones (adults responsible for their care).
This is what motivates us to write you about the joy we feel as we look forward to your presence among us. We Spanish Redemptorists are joining in wholeheartedly with this event of the Church and Redemptorist celebration. So that the event might be as well organized as possible, we share with you the information we have as of this moment.
The Cardinal Archbishop of Madrid has given us some guidelines to be followed. All the groups of young people who come to Madrid must do so as part of the groups from their own respective dioceses; it is at the diocesan level that they must register for the event. It is the Archdiocese of Madrid which will make available to the various groups of young people the hospitality for the diocesan celebration (August 11 – 15) and the World Youth Day (August 16 – 21).
It would only be in the case of absolute impossibility of someone coming with their own diocese that we would look at the possibility of registering them through one or the other of our Redemptorist parishes in Madrid. If this situation occurred, one would have to contact the Coordinator for the Province of Madrid named below.
There are plans for a Redemptorist Day, which would take place on Friday, August 19, in our school of Gamo Diana, next to the parish of San Gerardo in Madrid. On that day all the Redemptorists and all our young people will gather with our Superior General, Father Michael Brehl.
For the days after the meeting (August 21 through 25) the Province of Madrid is making its houses available to the whole Congregation in order to welcome the young people who wish to get to know something of our Spanish cities. We don’t have many accommodations to offer, but what we have we are placing at the disposition of all. It would be necessary, however, to reserve soon the number of rooms you are going to need in order to distribute them to the various groups who request them.
The communities available for these visits of young people are: Perpetuo Socorro (Madrid), Santissimo Redentor (Madrid), San Gerardo (Madrid), Granada, Valencia, Barcelona, Zaragoza, Pamplona, Santander, El Espino (Burgos), Vigo, Astorga, Salamanca and Mérida.
It is necessary to make arrangements for transportation to these various cities as soon as possible because all the transportation options will be in high demand. Hospitality for Redemptorist priests and brothers themselves who will be in Madrid during this time will take place in the communities of Perpetuo Socorro and Santissimo Redentor.
In Madrid a central commission has been named to coordinate the various tasks that must be done: volunteers, hospitality, Redemptorist Day, and days of relaxation. The general coordinator is Father Jorge Ambel (firstname.lastname@example.org). Postal address: C/ Manuel Silvela 14, 28010 Madrid España. Telephone: 00 34 915913654. The commission needs all the necessary information before February 28, 2011.
I ask that all this information be passed on to those responsible for Redemptorist Young Adult and Youth Ministry in your unit in order that good coordination will happen from the beginning. With my best wishes to all.
Editor note: Elections confirmed by the General Council previous to October 16 were listed in last month’s SCALA.
Father Stanisław Piekielniak, 46. was elected Provincial Superior of the Province of Bolivia. Father Richard Nelson Flores Cruz, 41, was elected Provincial Vicar of Bolivia. Confirmed on November 2, 2010.
Father Cruzito Manding, 48, was elected Provincial Superior of the Province of Cebu, Philippines. Confirmed on November 5, 2010.
Father Justo Ramón Correa, 49, was elected Provincial Superior of the Province of Buenos Aires, Argentina. Confirmed on November 5, 2010.
Father Alirio Suárez Velazco, 45, was elected Vice Provincial Superior of the Vice Province of Caracas. Confirmed on November 12, 2010.
Father Juan Ciro Villafuerte Chamana, 34, was elected Vice Provincial Superior of the Vice Province of Perú-South. Confirmed on November 19, 2010.
Father Danilo Bulegon, 65, was elected Provincial Superior of the Province of Porto Alegre. Father Márcio Halmenschlager, 36, was elected Provincial Vicar of the Province of Porto Alegre. Confirmed on November 19, 2010.
Father Dominic Nguyễn Phi Long, 36, was elected Vice Provincial Superior of the Vice Province of Extra Patriam. Father Dominic Đinh Minh Hai, 51, was elected Vice Provincial Vicar of the Vice Province of Extra Patriam. Confirmed on November 22, 2010.
ACTIVITIES OF THE GENERAL GOVERNMENT:
This Secretariat is made up of the current Superior General and seven Redemptorists named by him after consulting the Sisters: Reverend Emilio Lage, (Madrid) has been President of this Secretariat for the past several years. The other Redemptorists are: Gabriel Boudreault (Tokyo, residing in Rome), Ignatius Dekkers, C.Ss.R. (Netherlands), Sabatino Majorano (Naples), Mirosław Grakowicz (Poland), Augustin Phaiboon Udomdej (Bangkok) and Ronald McAinsch (London).[(Editor's note: General Consultor Joćo Pedro Fernandes has recently been appointed also.] Since the first meetings of the Secretariat, some Redemptoristines have been invited to participate. At the October meeting the three members of the Viva Memoria Commission: Sr. Magdalena Schumann of the Monastery of Lauterach, Austria, Sr. Ewa Dobrzelecka of the Monastery of Bielsko-Biala, Poland, and Sr. Joan Culver of the Monastery of Liguori, USA were present by invitation.
The purpose of the meeting was to begin an intense preparation for a proposed Redemptoristine General Assembly, which, after the necessary ecclesial permissions, could take place at Mater Domini in May of 2012. At the October meeting, decisions were made based on the proposals as submitted by the Redemptoristines to two questionnaires - one from Father General and the other from the Viva Memoria Commission. Our Order, with each monastery being autonomous, has no central government. But with the C.Ss.R. Secretariat, and later with the setting up of the Viva Memoria Commission, every monastery can be consulted through questionnaires, E-mail and every form of communication.
Editor’s note: The last week of November Father General participated in the bi-annual general assembly of the Union of Superiors General (USG) at the Vatican. At the conclusion of the meeting, the Holy Father received the gathered Superiors General in an audience. Following is a summary of his remarks:
"The profound renewal of the consecrated life begins with the centrality of the Word of God," the Pontiff said, "and more concretely in the Gospel, supreme rule for all of you."
"The consecrated life is a plant with a wealth of branches that has its roots in the Gospel," he said.
The Holy Father continued, "This is demonstrated by the history of your institutes, in which the firm will to live the message of Christ and configure your life to him, is and remains the fundamental criterion of vocational discernment and of your personal and communal discernment."
He affirmed that "the Gospel lived daily is the element that gives beauty to the consecrated life and presents you before the world as a trustworthy alternative." "Contemporary society needs and the Church expects you to be a living Gospel," Benedict XVI stated.
"You are seekers of God by vocation," he affirmed. "To this pursuit you consecrate the most precious energies of your life."
"You seek the definitive, you seek God, keeping your gaze fixed upon him," the Pope added. "Always be passionate pursuers and witnesses of God!"
The Pontiff stressed a "fundamental aspect of the consecrated life:" fraternity. Fraternal life is one of the aspects greatly sought by young people when they draw near to your life," he acknowledged.
"It is an important prophetic element that you offer to a fundamentally individualistic society," the Holy Father added.
He continued: "I know the efforts that you are making in this field, as I also know the difficulties that communal life has.
"There is need of serious and constant discernment to listen to what the Spirit says to the communities, to recognize what comes from the Lord and what is contrary to him."
Benedict XVI urged, "Be masters of discernment so that your brothers and sisters assume this 'habitus' and your communities become an eloquent sign for the world of today."
"A last element that I would like to highlight is mission," he said. "Mission is the Church's mode of being and, in it, of the consecrated life itself." "It is part of your identity," the Pope affirmed. "It moves you to bring the Gospel to everyone, without limits."
He noted that "mission, supported by a powerful experience of God, by a robust formation and by a fraternal life in community, is a key for understanding and revitalizing consecrated life."
General Consultors Juventius Andrade and João Pedro Fernandes made the Canonical Visitation to the Vice Province of Manaus from October 20 to November 2. Father General travelled to Manaus to participate in the closing of the Visitation. Pictured here are Father General, the two Consultors and the members of the Vice Province of Manaus.
Editor’s note: More photos in the photo gallery of www.redemptorist.info
The Collegio Maggiore, the residence area of Casa Sant’Alfonso where Redemptorists studying in Rome come to live and share community life with one another, began it’s year on Oct with a 4 day retreat from September 26 to 30th at the Casa Nazaret outside of Rome. Vicar General Enrique López gave the retreat.
Later, in October, the Collegio formerly opened their activities on campus with a Mass with Father General and a cook-out on the outdoor 4th floor terrazzo. The cook-out was in the style of a Brazilian churrascaria with a variety of grilled meats and made more congenial with the addition of Brazilian caipirinha drinks made with cachaça, a potent distilled alcohol made from sugar cane.
More photos available in the photo gallery of www.redemptorist.info
There are 25 confreres who make up the Collegio. New confreres of the Collegio for this 2010-2011 academic year are:
Waldo Rubén Barrionuevo Ramírez from the Province of Bolívia studying Biblical Theology at the Gregorianum.
William Ikre from the Vice Province of Nigeria who will return in February to pursue his doctorate at the Alphonsianum in Moral Theology.
Augustine Mugambi Kiruja from the Mission in Kenya studying Moral Theology at the Alphonsianum.
James Kumar from the Province of Bangalore studying Moral Theology at the Alphonsianum.
Thomas Biju Madathikunnel from the Province of Liguori (Alwaye, India) studying Social Communications at the Salesianum.
Patrice Nyanda from the Vice Province of Burkina-Niger studying Missiology at the Gregorianum.
Giuseppe Tri Pham Dinh from the Province of Vietnam studying Sacred Scripture at the Biblicum.The Collegio and the entire Casa Sant'Alfonso community mourned with fellow member Daniel Andree from the Province of Denver, whose mother passed away in the USA unexpectedly on November 18th. May she rest in peace.
As we previously reported in the October 2010 edition of SCALA, the Alphonsianum openend its academic year with the customary Mass to the Holy Spirit and report of the President on October 5th. Siince then, the Academy has compiled and released its statistics for this academic year and we present them to you along with a comparison with past years.
The 10 countries with the most students studying at the Academy this year are:
66 - Italy
8 - Democratic Republic of the Congo
1. The students: statistics for the last 9 years
Status of students
* men and women
Continent of origin
2. The Staff
CENTER FOR SPIRITUALITY:
The Center for Redemptorist Spirituality will be having the Spirituality Course in English this coming year, 2011. It will take place from June 05-June 26, 2011. The program includes, as usual, a pilgrimage to the Alphonsian sites. Besides fundamental themes of our Redemptorist Spirituality we will also be discussing important aspects and issues that arise from our last General Chapter.
We ask the participants to arrive in Rome no later than the 4th of June and to leave Italy no earlier than the 26th of June.
The full cost of the workshop and pilgrimage comes out to Euro 1,700 per person. We realize this may present a difficulty for some. Please let us know if you need any financial assistance. We will be able to help cover the cost of the course for some of the participants. Unfortunately, given the limitations of our budget, we cannot cover the cost of air travel.
Please let us know as soon as you can who will be participating from your Unit. US Citizens will NOT require a special VISA for this short workshop in Italy. Otherwise, confreres should check the status of VISA travel requirements to Italy with their respective Consulates.
We will be sending you another letter with a reminder and further details of the program in December. As in the past, we will do all we can to make of this workshop not only a learning experience but also an occasion of spiritual renewal for each participant.
Thank you very much for your interest and attention. May the Lord continue to bless and strengthen you in your ministry.
The last of a series of annual retreats organized by the Warsaw Provincial government took place November 15 to 19, 2010. Father Ivel Mendanha, C.Ss.R, from India, was the retreat master. Approximately 50 Redemptorists participated, most of whom live and work in Poland as well as in Belarus, and one priest from the Province of Prague.
The reflections offered by Father Ivel invited the participants to a deepening of their commitment as a “disciple of Jesus”, referring to the idea of intimately following Jesus Christ as found in Constitution #1 of our Congregation. Special attention was given to the road walked by faith by those who are called – such as in the experience of the apostles Peter and Paul. Each Apostle’s story, whose conversion was narrated by Father Ivel, enabled us to see just how long the path is that leads from the first to the second conversion. The second conversion is a continuous process and is the living out of the ministry of our apostolic life as Redemptorists.
What also struck a particular chord was the theme “Community living of the disciples of Jesus.” This theme served as a backdrop to the topic of “restructuring for the Mission.” Living in community (in a Province or in a Conference) we are united not only by reason of mutual attraction or common origin, but rather by means of the call of Jesus.
We perceived that our apostolic life in community (locally, as well as at the Conference and Congregational level) has the potential to be a Gospel sign of contradiction (that is, witness) before the two ideologies that dominated the 20th century. The effects of the 20th century are still present today: communism (only the communal whole has value and the individual is excluded) and individualism (for instance “Thatcherism,” in which the individual and his/her rights has value and the role of the community is minimalized).
Both ideologies could negatively influence our comprehension of apostolic life in community.. Father Ivel brought to our attention that the process of restructuring for the Mission, so central to the Conferences that are being formed in our Congregation, could encounter obstacles. Such obstacles would be the lack of availability and the lack of will to overcome deeply rooted negative tendencies within us, all results of the ideologies of individualism and communism.
Spiritual exercises must include themes that are at the heart of the spirituality of the “disciple of Jesus”: faith as abandonment and confidence in God, prayer as an expression of faith, the Eucharist as a celebration of the life of a disciple, and finally, Mary as model of the life of a disciple of Jesus.
It was good that this last series of spiritual exercises of the Province of Warsaw were led by someone who is very close to us because of Father Ivel’s year at the Center for Spirituality in Rome. We discovered these days that we are very close to one another in our Redemptorist vocation regardless of our independent formation or cultural traditions. I think that we have the same challenges as Redemptorists in many other Provinces, many with which Father Ivel is familiar. I think that our Province’s reality is born of a situation that is common to the worldwide living of the charism of the Redemptorist vocation. This is exactly what we were able to realize and deepen in the common celebration of the Eucharist and prayer each day.
The website whose address is below forms the acta of the proceedings with many interesting presentations, reports and outlines in the major languages of the Conference on how Europe is preaching the gospel ever anew. Redemptorist Mission preachers, especially, will be interested in browsing this website.
Recent noteworthy events in the Redemptorist Family. For a complete record of Transitions visit the Officialia site
First Profession of Temporary Vows:
Profession of Perpetual Vows:
Ordination to the Priesthood:
Jubilees – January
50th Jubilee of Profession:
50th Jubilee of Ordination:
25th Jubilee of Profession:
25th Jubilee of Ordination:
Past issues of SCALA are archived at: http://www.cssr.com/scala/index.shtm
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