Fourth day of the General Chapter 2019
On September 13, after morning prayer and Eucharist, presided by Bishop Antonio Muniz, O.Carm., the morning session was divided in two parts.
Firstly, Bishop Antonio Muniz gave a talk on “The role of Mendicant life in the Church today”. This was followed by a presentation that summarized the Order's responses to the Instrumentum Laboris of the Chapter. Group works followed to reflect on the question: How can we be faithful to our tradition in order to respond to the challenges of the present and be open to the future? A summary of the workshops was shared with the assembly.
In his talk, Bishop Antonio Muniz reflected on three questions: What are you doing here, Elijah? What are you doing here, Mary? What are you doing here, Carmelite, facing the challenges of our world?
In a simple and fraternal style, he invited us to be surprised by God who reveals himself to us in an unexpected "gentle breeze", as he did with Elijah. Strengthened by the divine bread, the prophet was able to get back on track and continue his mission. Rooted in the true heavenly bread which is Jesus Christ and nourished by it, we too can continue our work in the Church, at the service of the Kingdom.
Mary invites us to leave our securities and take up the journey, announcing the presence of the Word. She, who reflects eminently other women in Salvation History, is also a model of the Church, of Carmel, "in mission", with a welcoming attitude, accompanying and serving, as Mary did with her cousin Elizabeth.
Contemplating the example of Elijah and Mary, Carmelites are called to form prayerful, fraternal and Samaritan communities, capable of taking care of the brothers and sisters we encounter, both in our communities and in society. This requires a process of personal conversion, centered on personal and community meditation of the Word of God, and of pastoral-ecological conversion, as we learn to prioritize our activities, with the joy that springs from the encounter with God. Only He will give us confidence and make us creative.
In the afternoon, Christian Körner (administrator pro tempore) reported on the financial state of the Order. Then, Michael Farrugia reported on his work as Procurator General during these six years. Finally, the two of them, together with Dr. Merlini, legal advisor to the Curia, reported on the closing down of the Domus Carmelitana. Each report was followed by a fraternal and open dialogue.