authorization for the postponement of the celebration of general and provincial chapters to a date to be determined;
once the new dates for the celebration of the chapter have been established, the Dicastery should be informed by written communication sent by e-mail to the following address email@example.com; or by fax to the following number: + 39 06 6988 4526;
at the same time, it is to be noted that the mandates of the major superiors and their respective councils are extended until the next celebration of the chapters;
These indications take effect from the date of issue of the General Decree CICLSAL Prot. No. Sp.R. 2419/20 of 2 April 2020 and will remain in force until new provisions are given.
CICL July 1, 2020
Pandemic shows signs of being with us long term.
Letter to General Moderators
responding to “requests for clarification regarding the possibility of using means of telecommunications for sharing between members of a “coetus personarum” ad mentem in the sense of can. 627 [and canon 631]”.
Can. 627 §1 Superiors are to have their own council, in accordance with the constitutions, and they must make use of it in the exercise of their office.
Can. 631 §1 In an institute the general chapter has supreme authority in accordance with the constitutions. It is to be composed in such a way that it represents the whole institute and becomes a true sign of its unity in charity. Its principal functions are to protect the patrimony of the institute mentioned in can. 578 and to foster appropriate renewal in accord with that patrimony. It also elects the supreme Moderator, deals with matters of greater importance, and issues norms which all are bound to obey.
Can. 166 §1 The one who presides over the college or group is to summon all those who belong to the college or group. When it has to be personal, the summons is valid if it is made in the place of domicile or quasi-domicile or in the place of residence.
Notes government travel restrictions.
1. The Holy Father, during the audience of June 30 of this year (Prot. n. Sp. R. 2452/20), has granted the Congregation for Institutes of Consecrated Life and Societies of Apostolic Life an “extraordinary faculty”, approved in specific form which authorizes the Dicastery to dispense for individual cases, the physical presence of councilors according to the prescriptions of can. 166 §1.
2. Outside pandemic times a meeting using telecommunications… is not an ordinary solution for the governance of an Institute or a Province. … habitual recourse to telecommunications would render meaningless the service of authority … maintaining a network of relationships.
3. The Major Superior… will submit a request to the CICL for telecommunication use for “a formal meeting with the Council”.
maintain confidentiality and secrecy (if required c.699) (cf. can. 127);
verify the identity of the participants; – all and only participants.
intervention in real-time.
trust and responsibility
5. Synodality, chapter collegiality, … at the heart of the work of renewal of Second Vatican Council and a gift of RL to church. The secular [age-old] tradition of chapters calls for physical presence as a way of safeguarding and promoting the constant search for the common good. Physical presence … cannot be replaced even by the most sophisticated instruments of telecommunications.
6. Collegiality cannot be reduced to votes - consensus arises from shared discernment
7. No general or provincial chapters could be held by means of telecommunications, nor the combination of partial physical presence and partial presence through telecommunications, but only by means of physical presence.
Video-conferences have been a lifesaver for connecting us during this time of isolation and distancing, yet they lack the richness that physical presence carries.
Teleconference for administrative matters
Teleconference with permission for canonical matters
Delay until it is safe to gather
Terms are extended
Is the needed decision a chapter decision
Required by Code or Constitutions
Election of leadership
Change of Constitutions
An assembly may take up some tasks
Could be virtual
Take seriously the norms of CICL
A smaller representative chapter
Broader consultation, preparation, consensus
Commit decision to another body (c 174-175)
Transfer the right of election to one or more suitable persons.
Petition the bishop or CICLSAL
Confidentiality is maintained,
All the directors and only the directors are able to be present and their identity is certain, and
Real-time discussion and intervention by each person are assured.