The fourth day of work of the International Council of JPIC was marked by reflection and analysis. During the morning, Br. Cesar Külkamp, OFM, General Definitor for Latin America, presented a synthesis of the Plenary Council of the Order of 2018 and the General Chapter 2021 regarding JPIC.
Afterward, the Three Franciscan Networks in the world were then presented. Br. Daniel Rodríguez Blanco, OFM, presented the Franciscan Network for Migrants of the Americas whose origin dates back to 2018 and which currently has more than 70 Franciscans in different countries of Latin America and the United States. In the coming weeks, Brazil will form its team to be part of it. Then, Br. Francesco Zecca, OFM, explained the reality of the Mediterranean and the importance for the development of a Franciscan Network in the area. Interreligious dialogue, welcoming migrants and refugees and commitment to young people offer opportunities to work from the culture of encounter. The Minister General, together with the General Definitory, have created a Committee to articulate this Network. Finally, Br. Angelito Cortez, OFM, presented to the International Council the Franciscan Network for Peace in Asia. He presented the projects that are currently working on this theme and that are promoted by Franciscan brothers in countries such as the Philippines, Indonesia, Japan, South Korea, among others. With the commitment and support of the entities of the Order could lead to the construction of this Network. Right now it’s just a wish.
Before lunch, there was a virtual meeting with Br. Francisco Gómez, OFM, Secretary General for Missions and Evangelization and with Br. Hieronimus Rupa, OFM, Vice Secretary for Formation and Studies. The question that accompanied the presentation of the brothers was: How can JPIC animators contribute to those responsible for the formation and evangelization of the different entities? For Br. Francisco it is important that JPIC animators contribute to the elaboration of the Ratio Evangelitationis that is in the process of consultation in the entities. In the same way, he suggested supporting the New Ways of Life and continue a joint work between JPIC, evangelization and formation as part of a whole, but respecting the identity of each of them. Br. Hieronimus shared the opportunity that we Franciscans have in the framework of the Centenary that runs from 2023 to 2026. He also announced the Congress of “Non-ordained Brothers” at the level of the Order to be held in 2025. The challenges facing formation are affective maturity, clericalization in the Order and experiential formation. In all this, JPIC animators can offer support and be part of those processes.
In the afternoon, Miguel Ángel Jaimes, a Colombian layman with experience in pastoral project processes, sensitized the brothers to the need to work as Franciscans in a Network to get out of the self-referentiality from which the message to the CIJPIC of the Minister General prevented.
Markus Heinze, OFM, Executive Director of Franciscans International, who shared the history, organizational structure and issues addressed by Franciscans International.