On November 16-19, 2020, the friars of the Delegation in Chile, along with two young men in formation, met in Santiago to celebrate the 25th anniversary of Conventual Franciscan presence in Chile.
In June of 1995, Friars Pietro BELTRAME and Giorgio MOROSINOTTO arrived in Chile. On July 17, 1995, they were joined by Friars Maurizio BRIDIO and Ramón ZAS GARCÍA.
Prior to the celebration of this jubilee, on November 9-14, 2020, there had been an online canonical visitation conducted by the Vicar Provincial of the Italian Province of St. Anthony of Padua (Northern Italy), Friar Roberto M. BRANDINELLI.
The joy of meeting again was made greater since the friars were unable to travel freely due to the pandemic and meeting online was their only option. At this meeting, the friars gratefully recalled the last twenty-five years. The high point was the celebration of Mass at which a fair number of faithful participated. We remembered the many confreres who passed through the Delegation and those who left us, including: Friar Berardo (Elio) DE GRANDIS (+2005), the postulant Eduardo RIQUELME (+2009) and Friar Giorgio MOROSINOTTO (+2018). During the Mass the eleven friars of the Delegation renewed their vows.
Along with the celebrations, there was also time to talk about various aspects of the life of the communities and about the Delegation itself. The topics ranged from youth and vocation ministry to formation and the economy. Friar Matteo MARTINELLI presented a project for the Delegation’s website.
The Provincial Delegate, Friar Tullio PASTORELLI, shared a draft of the report he will be presenting at the next Provincial Chapter in 2021. In it, he highlighted some of the upcoming challenges the Delegation will be facing.
The friars discussed their dreams for the next four years and the future of the Delegation. The Vicar Provincial led the meeting by means of the Zoom social media platform and encouraged everyone to continue dialoguing.
On Wednesday, November 18, there was a day of fraternity and rest. The friars visited a town located in the Cordillera de Los Andes. It was also the occasion to celebrate the 25th anniversary of priesthood for Friar Enrico BROCCHI. Friar Enrico spoke joyfully about his vocation with simple and profound words.
At the end, the confreres held the conviction that they had strengthened not only the fraternity, but also the missionary desire to continue on in Chile, a land that, 25 years ago, so lovingly welcomed the Conventuals.
Friar Jack GINTING