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The JPIC animators of the Conference of Brazil-Southern Cone met from September 12 to 15 in the city of Córdoba, Argentina, Franciscan Province of Asunción, with the objective of discussing the new organization of the conference, based on the services developed in each entity, preserving the particularity of each region and, finally, the construction of the Special Statutes (SS) of this new organization.

The face-to-face meeting opened with the words of Christian Rodríguez, a Colombian layman residing in Buenos Aires, who shared with the participating friars an overview of the recent History of the Church in Latin America, beginning with the Second Vatican Council, going through each Latin American and Caribbean Conference (CELAM), in which he emphasized the vision of the Church as the people of God, where only Jesus Christ is head, associating the clamor of the Latin Church with the prophetic speeches of Pope Francis.  He also pointed out the Church’s emphasis on the human dimension, the expansion of the concept of the poor in a way that includes all those who lack what is needed for a dignified life. Finally, he highlighted a call for a new Christian culture, echoing the invitation made in the Santo Domingo Conference in 1992.

Then the participants continued with the agenda, namely: sharing their work together, developing a proposal that will be presented at the Conference level, agreeing on the agenda that will be presented at the International JPIC Council in Rio de Janeiro, and construction of the SS.

The JPIC animators read the SS of the various Conferences in order to identify the most important elements in the new Conference of Brazil-Southern Cone that is being created.

Apart from spending many hours of intense work, the JPIC animators were able to enjoy meeting the friars who constitute the provincial government. Staying at the same house allowed them to pray, share meals and moments of recreation together.  They also visited the postulancy house, where they ended the meeting with a moment of prayer, meditation and spirituality directed by the friars in charge of the Formation.

The JPIC Commission of the Conference wishes that the new Francisan vocations bear fruit and that the spirit of Saint Francis of Assisi by manifested in the actions of every friar.


Brother João Paulo Gabriel, OFM

Secretary of the Brazil-Southern Cone JPIC Commission