Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Getting Ready for Chapter 2008

We Franciscan Friars of the Assumption BVM Province are getting ready for our triennial Chapter. A chapter is an official meeting of the community. During the chapter decisions are made which may affect the entire provincial brotherhood. The chapter is bound by certain canon laws, which are given to guide the order of the provincial community and for the benefit of the members.

Our Franciscan documents call it the "supreme legislative body" of the Province. The decision made are then entrusted to the provincial administration (provincial minister, his vicar and the councilors) to carry out. During the week-long meeting all assignments are suspended and the brotherhood deliberates on issues, reviews where we are, elects new leadership and decides on new directions.

This year we will not be electing a new provincial minister or vicar. Their terms are for six years (with the possibility of re-election for another three years). They were elected at Chapter 2005 and will continue in office until 2011. However, we have five elected councilors who have a three-year term limit. These positions are up for election (either re-electing present members or electing new ones).

While very serious, it is also a wonderful opportunity for the Friars to gather for prayer, fellowship, rekindle friendships and celebrate, too!