The Preparatory Commission for the General Chapter, appointed by the General Council, held its first meeting in Rome at the Curia on 9-12 April 2018. The theme chosen by the General Council is: “«You are my witnesses» (Is. 43:10); from one generation to the next: called to be faithful to our Carmelite charism”.
After meeting with members of the General Council, the Preparatory Commission reflected on this theme. It is clear that Pope Francis calls all consecrated life to be a witness in this moment in history. As a contemplative brotherhood, we Carmelites seek the face of God while living in the heart of the world. We believe that God has established his dwelling place among his people, and for this reason, the Carmelite brotherhood knows itself to be a living part of the Church and of history. We are challenged to be an open fraternity, able to listen to the world in which we live and willing to be questioned by it; ready to meet life’s challenges and to give an authentic evangelical response based on our own charism (see Con. 21).
The General Chapter is the principal sign of the unity of our Order in all its diversity. It is the fraternal gathering in which we listen to the Holy Spirit of our Lord Jesus Christ, so as to know the will of God for this generation so that we best serve the Church (see Con. 255).
We invite each religious and each community to be involved in the process of preparation for the General Chapter. A document (Instrumentum laboris) is now available in order to assist this reflection on the Chapter theme. It would be appropriate to reflect on this document in community meetings. We would appreciate that the results of these reflections be sent to the Prior Provincial, Commissary General, Delegate General or Commissary Provincial who, together with his Council will also have answered the questions, will collate them and send them to the Commission. These answers, the result of the collaboration and reflection of the whole Order, will be presented to the Chapter.
We also invite you, individually or as a community, to submit clear, concrete and reasonable proposals on any matter that may be for the good of the Order in the future (cf. Con 262-263).
Please send the replies to the questions of the Instrumentum laboris and any proposals no later than 15 March 2019. We would also ask that each provincial would kindly send a photo and a brief biographical profile of anyone in your province attending the chapter by the same day, 15 March 2019.
A web page will also be prepared, www.ocarm.org/capitulumgenerale2019 to pass on information of what is happening, and to facilitate participation in this event.
Communication may be sent to:
General Chapter 2019
Via Giovanni Lanza, 138
We encourage you to distribute this letter to all your communities, asking them to take part in this process and to use the Instrumentum laboris.
The Preparatory Commission
Fr. Edison Tinambunan (Indo), President
Fr. Richard Byrne (Hib), Secretary
Fr. Claudemir Rozin (Par)
Fr. Boniface K.imondolo (Ken)
Fr. Luca Sciarelli (Ita)