no. 2   april - june 2003


Government Commission Seeks Input From Various Sources

With the mandate from the 2001 General Chapter to study the structure of the central government of the Order and to make concrete proposals at the General Congregation in 2005, the ad hoc International Commission for Government has developed and distributed a questionnaire. Members of the current General Council, the Council that ended in September 2001, the members of the General Secretariat and the current Provincials were asked to participate. Responses were due at the end of March.

The meeting of the ad hoc International Commission on the Government of the Order, met January 24-27, 2003 at the General Curia in Rome. The members of the ad hoc International Government Commission are Josef Jancar (currently the Procurator General of the Order), Falco Thuis (Neer), Paolo Gollarte (Flum), Christopher O'Donnell (Hib), Mario Esposito (SEL), and Mark Attard (CISA). All members were able to be present.

The meeting began with a study of all the suggestions that have been made regarding the structure of the Curia during General Chapters for the past 30 years. For 30 years the General Chapters have repeatedly dealt with the question of governmental structure; today there are new challenges which require a governmental structure that truly responds to these new situations.

The Commission wished to know if the current structure of the General Council functions. The Commission felt the need to update itself on some of the details of work and life in the General Council. In particular there is a need to distinguish between the structure decided on by the General Chapter and that which is currently in place as well as the working order of this structure by the current members of the General Council.

The Commission formulated four areas of focus for the General Council: 1) promotion of our charism; 2) to live the fraternal life; 3) the efficiency of service and collaboration; 4) reciprocal communication.

As the meeting continued, the Commission came to the conclusion that it needed more information, not only from the members themselves of the current General Council but also from the members of the preceding General Council, and perhaps from the members of the General Secretariat, and by the staff, in order to have their views. A questionnaire will be sent to all, to be returned by the end of March.

The next meeting of the Commission will be January 30 - February 2, 2004.


Elections for Provincial and Council Held in the Maltese Province

The members of the Maltese Province recently completed their election of new leadership for the Province. Elected Provincial for three years was Alexander Vella. Newly elected to the Provincial Council were Charles Mallia, Alex Scerri, Robert Farrugia, and Amadeo Zammit.

The Province will hold their Provincial Chapter May 5-9, 2003.  (CITOC photo)


Carmelite Librarians Strategize Working Together

The librarians of the main Carmelite libraries from around the world came together at The Friars in Aylesford on April 25-26, 2003 to follow up on a meeting

Ten participants from Europe, North America, and Australia took part. Part of the discussions concerned how to get broader representation at such meetings.

A representative of each library made a brief presentation to the group. Working sessions were devoted to electronic cataloguing, the coordination of a computerized database of all Carmelite libraries around the world, the development of an international thesaurus, digitizing rare books, acquisitions, and book conservation.

Because of an increasing interest in Carmelite topics and the increasing availability of materials, the role and importance of non Carmelite researchers was also treated. The cataloguing of Carmelitana as part of the SPRIN project of the Titus Brandsma Institute was also discussed.

The importance of encouraging the creation of libraries in new provinces and jurisdictions was stressed as was the need for the existing libraries to have professionally trained people to further develop the libraries.

The first meeting of the Carmelite Librarians took place ten years ago and dealt with the coordination of card catalogues in Boxmeer and Rome. The fourth meeting is scheduled to take place the first week of July 2004 in either Boxmeer, The Netherlands or Washington, D.C.