On May 8-10, 2023, a second formation course on “Properties: Resources, Opportunity and Sustainability” was conducted for Ministers Provincial, Custodes, Economs, Exactors, Legal Representatives and the Representatives of Special Works. The course was organized by the Office of the Procurator General and the Federazione Intermediterranea Ministri Provinciali (FIMP). It was held at the Seraphicum College in Rome.

The course was presented in four different sessions, each lasting half a day. Four speakers took turns presenting issues about ecclesiastical property from the perspective of being environmentally sustainable and from the charismatic, legal, commercial, and investment viewpoints. Speakers were chosen who were well acquainted with our reality and who therefore provided specific information and offered extensive dialogue about opening up new viewpoints, for example, accessing the environmental sustainability of our properties. Rather than suggesting concrete solutions, the course indicated ways to plan for, and evaluate, properties. Sister Annunziata REMOSSI mentioned that the management of property depends on the mission of individual Provinces and of the Order as a whole, and not just individual friars or contingencies. She stated: “Much of our credibility passes through the way of financial administration.” Professor Massimiliano MUGGIANO explained the ways in which property can become environmentally sustainable, lowering consumption by taking advantage of new renewable energy sources, adapting conscious and virtuous lifestyles. The accountant Renzo BOLDRINI, explained the different kinds of contracts for the sale of properties, and Friar Giorgio SILVESTRI gave a wide-ranging lecture on the value and use of our property assets.
In addition to the organizers and speakers, twenty-four friars from the FIMP Jurisdictions attended the course, including the Ministers Provincial of Padua, Foligno, and Pescara, Italy, and almost all of the Provincial Economs.
The Assistant General for the FIMP Federation, Friar Giovanni VOLTAN, stressed the importance of events like this to discuss one another’s experience in administrative service and to learn more about these issues.
In the final evaluation, the participants said they were satisfied with the course and the way it was organized and were grateful for the hospitality they received at the Seraphicum, an ideal place for meetings like this in the future. Finally, some suggestions emerged from the evaluation:

  1. A summary of the proceedings of the meeting should be provided, or least a handout, useful for passing on what was learned.
  2. Focus the next meeting on technical matters: budgets and final balances; financial investments, the cataloging of assets; etc., even though some FIMP Ministers Provincial may be away conducting canonical visitations in view of their upcoming Provincial Chapters.

The Assembly decided that the Order should organize a course for Provincial Economs, similar to the course for new Ministers Provincial Custodes and Secretaries, starting at the next Ordinary Chapters. Moreover, a handbook should be written that covers financial matters, at least as far as canon law and the Order’s own law are concerned.

Friar Maurizio DI PAOLO, Procurator General