On November 20-23, 2023, the Extraordinary Chapter of the Italian Province of St. Francis of Assisi (Central Italy) was celebrated at the Seraphicum College in Rome.
As previously announced during its 2021 Ordinary Chapter, the purpose of this Chapter was to discuss a number of important issues. One of these was defining our presences in some friaries or filial houses. Since it had not been possible to discuss these topics during the Ordinary Chapter, they were deferred to the Extraordinary Chapter. Pope Francis tells us that time is greater than space and that initiating processes is more important than occupying spaces. Certain of this, the Provincial Definitory worked with the Guardians over the last two years, on a path of shared discernment, to express preferences regarding our presence and to open future scenarios for the Province.
The work they did became the basis of the Instrumentum laboris used during this Chapter. The Capitulars were asked to express their views on four important topics:
– Making concrete decisions regarding our presences in Pescia, Tirrenia, Piglio, Rome-Cittadella dell’Immacolata, Mogliano Marche and Perugia, Italy;
– Undertaking paths of new evangelization;
– Initiating shared experiences of evangelization through art, at some of our historic friaries and churches;
– Enhancing charitable works, benefitting, in particular, the House for Priests in Montedinove and the chaplaincies at the Regina Coeli prisons in Rome, Pesaro and Ancona, Italy.
In addition to these topics, the Capitulars examined some financial and legal matters. Among these was the entrustment of the friary in Siena, Italy, to the Province of St. Maximilian M. Kolbe in India.
This four-day Chapter was challenging and sometimes painful, but it was carried out in an atmosphere of fraternity, discussion and frank sharing.
The Province now looks forward to its 2025 Ordinary Chapter. At that time, it hopes to capitalize on the processes that were started over the last six years, and the decisions that were made during this Extraordinary Chapter, and thus enhance our presence, making the most of the work and generous commitment of so many confreres.
Friar Daniele SCIACCA, Provincial Secretary