I'm busy working on my blog posts. Watch this space!
OFFICIAL COUMNICATION - MAY 2017
May 3, 2017
May 3, 2017
Feast of the Apostles Phillip and James
As I begin this Circular Letter for May, I want to welcome the newest member of our Custody, Br. (Oswald) Maxim Cordoza who has just arrived Monday night at Saint Francis of Assisi Parish in Jebel Ali, UAE! Maxim is from the Saint Fidelis Province in Uttar Pradesh, India and is taking the place of our brother Wilson Andrade. (Please continue to keep our brother Wilson in your prayers.) On behalf of all the brothers in our Custody, I welcome you Maxim and wish you fruitful fraternity and ministry in our Custody!
I write today at the beginning of this month of Mary since our Father Francis had a special devotion to our Blessed Mother. Saint Bonaventure wrote in his Major Life about Saint Francis: “He embraced the Mother of our Lord Jesus Christ with indescribable love, because she had made the Lord of Majesty our brother and had obtained mercy for us. After Christ it was Mary in whom he placed his trust and whom he chose as advocate, both himself and his brothers.” (9:3) I ask you brothers to pray for the intercession of our Blessed Mother so that we may have a very fraternal and spirit-filled Chapter next month!
Our Chapter begins on Monday June 5that noon with lunch and concludes on Thursday morning by noon June 8th. I ask that those of you outside the UAE confirm that you have obtained your visas for the UAE already except for Jaison and Mathew in Qatar who have contacted me already. Also I remind each community that they prepare a ten-minute report of their community and ministry to present at the Chapter in PowerPoint. I ask the Guardians of the communities to make sure this is being done.
I have recently received the report dated April 10th from the Minister General Mauro Johri about our Financial Visitation last February. I want to quote you a part of that report that needs our attention:
“ONE OF THE MOST IMPORTANT FUNCTIONS OF AN ECONOMIC VISITATION IS TO ASSESS THE LEVEL OF THE BROTHERS’ UNDERSTANDING OF AND ADHERENCE TO THE PRINCIPLES OF THE FRATERNAL ECONOMY-TRANSPARENCY, ACCOUNTABILITY, SIMPLICITY, CO-RESPONSIBILITY AND SOLIDARITY…….. IT IS DIFFICULT TO KNOW WHETHER FRIARS ARE HANDING OVER TO THE PARISH OR FRIARY ALL THE GIFTS AND STIPENDS THEY RECEIVE FOR HOUSEHOLD BLESSINGS AND OTHER SIMILAR ACTIVITIES, AS THEY SHOULD BE DOING……..WHILE THE ECONOMIC VISITATION DID NOT TURN UP AND FLAGRANT VIOLATIONS IN THIS REGARD, THERE WERE SOME INDICATIONS THAT NOT ALL FRIARS ARE LIVING UP TO THE HIGHEST STANDARDS OF TRANSPARENCY AND ACCOUNTABILITY…..”
I remind all of you that in addition to our simplicity of life that we vowed ourselves to, we have made an agreement with the Vicariates that all money we receive through our pastoral work be given to the Parish. Both Apostolic Vicars have spoken to us numerous times about this. I expect each of you, including myself, to adhere strictly to this!
Please continue to pray for the success of our upcoming Chapter by praying our prayer for the Chapter. I look forward to seeing all of you from June 5-8!