The logo below was conceived by Friar Carlos Roberto de Oliveira CHARLES and realized by the designer Felipe POGGIANELLA. Within it, one can see the tau and the Franciscan coat of arms. The number 75 finishes with a star and a stylized moon representing the Immaculate Conception.
The design was made in bright silver, with shadowing shading and highlights to recall the ups and downs of the history of the Custody. Although this is a “diamond” jubilee, such symbolism was avoided because a jewel of great value and ostentation runs contrary to the simple, poor life of the minors. Thus, we chose bright silver in order to serve as a reminder of the “diamond”. The blue background, also shaded, represents the mantle of the Immaculate Virgin with the coat of arms of the Order showing the brightness of the Risen Christ, symbolized by the tau. It is in this blue mantle, the ocean of our crossing, that the confreres are wrapped, protected and revealed as children in the Son, adopted by the caring maternity of the Madonna.
The Custody began its journey on September 2, 1946, with the arrival of the first group of Conventual Franciscan missionaries from the Province of the Immaculate Conception of the United States. They landed at the port of Santos. They traveled by train and arrived in Rio de Janeiro, the then federal capital in the State of Guanabara, on September 5, 1946. They were welcomed by the La Salette religious in the Catumbi district, today the site of the famous Apotheosis Square, a venue of the Rio Carnival. On November 23 of that year, a second group of missionaries began to arrive with the last friar arriving in January of 1947. At that point the whole group moved to some provisional structures at the site of their future friary in the Rio Comprido district, where the Church of São Francisco is located.
The first official Conventual Franciscan friary in Latin America was erected and established on January 18, 1947 and the parish, created on January 1, 1945, was finally inaugurated on August 2, 1947. The mission was elevated to a Provincial Custody in 1970, with Friar Otto John FOUSER as the first Custos. Thus, the Custody, now celebrating seventy-five years of presence, is also celebrating fifty-one years of canonical erection, established in Rio de Janeiro. The Custody currently covers three cities in the State of Rio de Janeiro: Araruama, Petrópolis and Paraíba do, and three cities in the State of Minas Gerais: Juiz de Fora, Andrelândia, and Belo Horizonte.
Our grateful friars praise and thank God for this journey, from the post-war plantatio Ordinis to modern times, showing, among the many ups and downs, the splendor of the fruits gathered from the vocational efforts of the Custodial fraternity.
Friar Carlos Roberto de Oliveira CHARLES, Custodial Secretary