Oct 23, 2014
Dear Sisters & Brothers in Christ,
I want to first of all thank all of our elders for their wisdom, insight and all of the ministries they perform. I thank you for setting such a worthy example of not only what it means to be a good person, but also a good Christian. We owe our elders much for their loving and devoted service to God and especially this parish.
Immediately after the 11:00 am mass I will be leaving town. I am driving up to Oconomowoc, WI, for our Province Electoral Convocation. Redemptorists will be gathering from the far corners of the Denver Province, which stretches from Michigan to Mississippi and out to California and Washington State. It also includes Hawaii and Alaska, even though we do not have anyone stationed there at the moment. Oconomowoc is where I did my Novitiate year.
We will be electing our new government that will take office in January. It consists of an Ordinary Provincial Council (OPC) and an Extra-Ordinary Provincial Council (EPC). The OPC is made up of our provincial and two consulters. These three men are full-time and live in Denver. The EPC consists of four men who serve part-time. While the OPC takes care of the day to day operations and helps to enact the various procedures and directives that were decided on at our Chapter meetings (These visioning meetings occur in between the Electoral Convocations.), the EPC help to make appointments and helps the OPC in visiting all of the communities throughout the four years that they will be in office.
While there is a lot of work that the OPC & EPC do, probably the most important is to try an steer the course of our Province so that we stay true to the spirit and charism of the Congregation and help the Church at large fulfill its mission. We are constantly re-evaluating our place in the Church and precisely who the poor and most abandoned are in today's world and how we can best respond to their needs. Like almost everyone else we are growing older and have less men to accomplish the ever growing needs of the people of God.
We have a tendency to elect "safe" leaders, who will not do a whole lot and largely leave things be. The men largely want to be left alone to continue to do whatever they are doing. I feel that we are at a very crucial time and that we need to elect bold leadership who will not be afraid to make some hard decisions and challenge our Province to truly commit ourselves to seeking out the most abandoned and ministering to the poor, specifically, the economically poor.
I ask you to pray for us this week, that we may have the courage and faith to trust the Holy Spirit's promptings and elect the leadership that can best help us serve the needs of the People of God. May The Lord bless the men who will be elected and accept this great responsibility. I will be returning late Friday night.
In the Redeemer,