On Saturday, June 22, 2019, the closing ceremony of the 115th academic year of the Pontifical Theological Faculty of St. Bonaventure (Seraphicum) in Rome took place with a Mass of Thanksgiving and dinner in the campus park.
The Mass was presided over by Friar James McCURRY, OFM Conv., Minister Provincial of the Province of Our Lady of the Angels in the USA. Among the concelebrants was the Most Reverend Vincent Van Long NGUYEN, OFM Conv., Bishop of Parramatta, Australia. Bishop NGUYEN is a former student of the Faculty. The Mass was animated by some student friars from the Seraphicum.
At the end of the celebration, the Dean, Friar Đình Anh Nhue NGUYÉN, addressed the students who had received degrees this academic year. Among them were our confreres: Friars Andrés Eduardo GUERRA VEQUIZ, Raffaele MEMMO, and Ángel Joel NIÑO PACHECO, who each received his Baccalaureate Degree and Friar Elio Jorge ROJAS, who received his Doctorate Degree.
Others participating that evening included the new Minister General and Grand Chancellor of the Faculty, Friar Carlos TROVARELLI, along with some members of the General Curia.
In his homily, Friar James McCURRY emphasized how “Christ challenged St. Francis to be the ‘Gospel in Miniature’. St. Francis challenges us to be that same ‘Gospel in Miniature’… All of you have come to the Seraphicum because you want to embody everything which is implied in the three passages of the San Nicolo Missal…you ARE the San Nicolo Missal of today!…Da pauperibus – ‘Give to the poor’: These are the words that leapt off the page as St. Francis opened to the first passage in the Missal. Lads, you want to dispossess yourselves of everything so that you can be free to serve everyone unencumbered. Nihil in via – ‘Take nothing on the journey’: These are the words that leapt off the page as St. Francis opened to the second passage in the Missal. Lads, you are realistic enough to know that this way of life is not easy, that discipleship means the way of the Cross. Tollet crucem – ‘Let each take up the Cross’: These are the words that leapt off the page as St. Francis opened to the third passage in the Missal.
We Franciscans of the twenty-first century must be as courageous as Bernard of Quintavalle and Peter of Catania in saying “yes” to God’s invitation that we follow the Franciscan Rule and become with Saint Francis a ‘Gospel in Miniature’.”
Elisabetta LO IACONO – Seraphicum Press Office