Once the new Constitutions of the Order were promulgated in Italian, getting them translated into French was the best way of making them known to our friars. The confreres of the Provincial Custody of St. Bonaventure in France-Belgium had been looking forward to this project for some time. A French translation of the Constitutions would also serve other Jurisdictions, and make our charism better understood by those seeking answers about their own vocation.
Since several friars in the communities of the Custody knew both Italian and French, they all received a section of the Constitutions to be translated. During the restrictions caused by the pandemic, the translation project was useful to our future novices as an exercise in studying the Italian language. The various periods we spent under lockdown gave us time to do the translation work. Once the different sections were translated, Friar Daniel GAL put them together. He harmonized their style and added the French versions of the Franciscan Sources. With the help of lay experts, the final draft was completed on July 7, 2021.
During Advent, from November 28 to December 4, 2021, the friars of the Custody will attend a week-long spiritual retreat, which will take the Rule as its theme. The retreat will be led by the former Capuchin Minister General, Friar Mauro JÖHRI. In view of the Custodial Chapter scheduled for February of 2022, during the next few months, the confreres will undertake a meditative reading of the text of the Constitutions.
These two events will be an important time of formation regarding our way of life, helping us to celebrate the Chapter with renewed energy, and be always attentive to the Holy Spirit.
Friar Jean-François Marie AUCLAIR