2nd Meeting of the International Commission for the Revision of the Constitutions

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The second meeting of the International Commission for the Revision of the Constitutions was held at the Seraphicum in Rome, from May 25-28, 2010. The meeting was presided over by the Vicar General and coordinated by Friar Fermino Giacometti.

After a brief introduction to the work, a sharing of the texts of the critical analysis of the chapters from the present Constitutions, which had been given to the members of the Commission throughout the year, followed. The texts were judged to be very positive and able to stimulate reflection on various aspects providing a deeper insight into the structures for the revision of the Constitutions.

There was then an exchange of opinions concerning the series of studies that were commissioned during the year, some regarding the theme of the Rule and the Constitutions from different points of view, and others, the enfleshment of the charism in our various geo-cultural contexts, or the specific lived experiences of the charism.

From the reflection upon these studies and the critical analysis of the present Constitutions, there arose much to be discussed concerning what will be the most useful contributions in light of the revision of the Constitutions. There was common agreement that the first Chapter should contain the identity of the Order, and, in light of this, a lengthy discussion ensued concerning what makes up the fundamentals, particular concerning the aspect of “conventuality”, that need to be expressed in a more complete manner than does the present text.

Important to the work of the Constitutions, is holding onto a clear continuity with the expression of Francis written in the Rule, the tradition of eight centuries of the Order, and the essential challenges of the contemporary world which face the Friars of today.

Participating in the final day of the meeting were Friar Giancarlo Corsini, President of CIMP, and Friar Carlos Trovarelli, President of FALC. Strategies for continuing the project, and making it as effective as possible, were discussed with them. We hope to increase the number of Friars involved in the program for the revision of the Constitutions in various ways, and seek to interest as many confreres as possible in the project, so that there will be participants in the journey of revision and renewal of our way of life numbered among the entire Order.

On Tuesday, May 25, the Minister General also took part in the meeting, at which time he expressed his appreciation for the work completed so far by the Commission, and encouraged the continued journey of pointing out the elements and characteristics of our life, more than just the work that we do.

A large part of the material used during the meeting is available on the web page of the Revision of the Constitutions dedicated to this project, and frequently updated. The studies that were commissioned have been added under the file “Studies 2010”, along with the analysis of the third and fourth chapters of the present Constitutions. We will soon add those of the final two chapters along with the final observations. Much of the material, for now, is only available in Italian, but step by step, they will be made available in the other three languages of the Order.