Sunday, November 7, 2010

A Week of Meetings


November 7, 2010

Peace and Good,

This has been an eventuful week. On Tuesday morning at Mass I was sworn in as Assistant General. My duties began shortly after Mass when we began a meeting of the General Definitory. The Minister General is the head of the order, and the rest of us who are assistant general are a type of cabinet who advise the general and who serve as liasons to the various sections of the globe where the order is established.

This first council meeting went for four and a half days, about seven to eight hours a day. In addition, there was often homework to do to prepare for the discussion the next day.

I was incredibly impressed at the fraternal caring of those at the meeting. There was no attempt to outshine the others or force one's opinions on the others. The primary question is how can we serve the order and the individual friars.

Being new, I often had to ask questions concerning various topics. The others were more than willing to bring me up to date. They were patient with my Italian, which is not horrible, but definitely rusty.

One of the major concerns for the order is how to keep updating the friars and help them to grow spiritually. That is so important because we can so easily get caught up with what we are doing that we forget who we are.

This coming year, I am already programmed to visit the US, Canada, England, Ireland, Poland, Spain, Kenya and Malta. Those are the required trips, others might pop up as time goes by.

I fly back to the States tomorrow for about a month to visit the various provincials throughout the States and Canada. Then back to Rome on the Feast of St. Nicholas.

In spite of the work, I'm still reading. It keeps me sane. I finished another biography by Jacob Abbott about Genghis Khan. This was not his best. So little is know about him that Abbott often resorted to side topics to fill out the book.

A second work was Empires before Alexander by Robert Dise. This was one of the Teaching Company courses. It was excellent. The author provides a great amount of information but he throws in a great dry sense of humor every once in a while. At one point he was talking about Israel and how, when the Israelites entered the promised land, they probably did not really conquer Jericho and make its walls come tumbling down because it had not been inhabited for hundreds of years before and after their conquest. His line was that you didn't need hundreds of soldiers with trumpets, a half dozen of them with kazoos would have done the trick.

A third work was the Children of the Frost by Jack London. These were stories from Alaska and the Yukon. Many of them spoke of the Inuit and other native American tribes. It was excellent, and as always, whenever I read something about a very different culture, it opens my horizons as to how people think. Of course, the only problem is that London is an outsider, but he seems to have been respectful to their culture.

God bless and
fr. Jude

1 comment:

  1. Congratulations Jude. Enjoy your ministry.