On Wednesday, November 18, 2020, a meeting of the Guardians and Pastors of the Province of St. Joseph, Spouse of the B.V.M. in Romania was held at the Provincial Curia in Bacău, Romania.

The meeting began at 9:00 a.m. with opening remarks from the Minister Provincial, Friar Damian-Gheorghe PĂTRAȘCU. He highlighted some aspects of the 2020-2024 Provincial Four-Year Plan. The goal of the Plan can be thus summarized: to raise awareness of ongoing formation as a means of personal transformation and a path of maturation. The Minister Provincial invited the friars to see beyond the present difficulties, by means of personal availability and maturity, in order to build our fraternity in the best possible way.
After the Minister Provincial’s opening comments, a conference was presented by Friar Lucian HORLESCU, the President of the Commission for Ongoing Formation for the next four years. Friar Lucian first emphasized various elements taken from his Commission’s letter to all the friars of the Province. The central idea was that a basic factor for formation is to develop a good understanding of oneself. That, in turn, can lead to the construction of “healthy” communities, always centered on Christ, the foundation of one’s vocation and the rock on which one’s “home” must be built.
Going a step further, Friar Lucian summarized the three themes of the Provincial Four-Year Plan, namely: identity (personal and community), fraternity (authenticity and coherence in lifestyle) and missionary fraternity (being sent to bring people the Good News through our Franciscan charism). On the basis of these considerations, Friar Lucian also formulated some questions which he addressed to the friars for personal reflection.
At 11:00 a.m., Mass was celebrated, presided over by Friar Damian, who also gave a short homily on the day’s readings.
After lunch, the friars met for a moment of fraternal discussion. They each took a turn to talk about their communities of origin and the issues they considered most important.
At 4:00 p.m., Friar Lucian gave a second conference, this time on the theme of interpersonal conflict (the possibilities and methods for managing and resolving conflicts). He presented various ways of managing conflicts and emphasized the idea that conflicts are part of life and therefore, it is necessary to learn how to manage them.
The meeting ended with closing remarks from the Minister Provincial addressed to the friars present and their communities. The friars thanked God for formation events like this, which benefit our fraternal growth.

May the Lord grant us His peace so that each of us can always do good!

Friar Marcelin AMARIEI