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The JPIC OFM General Office participated virtually on Wednesday, November 8, in the transfer of the Executive Director of Franciscans International (FI).

The ceremony was presided over by Br. Michael Perry, OFM, president of Franciscans International. Many brothers and sisters of the Franciscan family, several staff members and FI colleagues attended in person and virtually.

In his speech, Michael Perry maintained that Franciscans International has always been committed, in accordance with the Franciscan spirituality exemplified by Saint Francis of Assisi, to serve and help people, especially those who suffer and are marginalized. From this perspective, FI has worked to defend human rights based on servant leadership.

He went on to state that Br. Markus Heinze, OFM, outgoing CEO, has been living his role at FI as a servant for many years. “The only two words we can say to you today are: Thank you very much!” He then expressed his gratitude and welcome to Br. Blair Matheson, TSSF, who will take over as the new CEO next January.

In his speech, Blair agreed with Michael Perry that FI will continue to minister in the spirit of servant leadership. And he is ready to begin his role and build on his experience, he said.

Later, during his speech, Markus Heinze OFM, stressed that he came to the FI office in Geneva primarily to continue the Franciscan concern of helping the suffering and the marginalized. From this motivation, he preferred to be a friend, a colleague, a brother, rather than a CEO. The word with which he concluded was: forgive me!

As JPIC OFM General Office we join this event with a Thank you Markus Heinze, OFM! Welcome Blair Matheson TSSF!


Daniel Rodríguez Blanco, OFM

Taucen Hotlan Girsang, OFM