Meeting of Camillian Parish Priests and Rectors Sao Paulo – 3rd Day

April 21 (Friday): The meeting resumes in the morning with another round of testimonies of the parish ministry in the various provinces and delegations of the Order.

The day is devoted to the reflection around the identity of the Camillian parish, starting with the presentation of the Statute of the Camillian parishes elaborated by the Brazilian province. Father Arlindo Tonetta, a Camillian parish priest of Brazil, presents this ‘instrument’ which then serve as the framework for group discussion in various language groups.

The Statute begins with a very precise ecclesial reference: “Among the ecclesial communities in which missionary disciples of Jesus live and are formed, the parishes are paramount. They are the living cells of the Church and the privileged place in which most of the faithful have a concrete experience of Christ and ecclesial communion. They are called to be homes and schools of communion.” (Aparecida Document, 170).

Before lunch, the Archbishop of Sao Paulo, Cardinal Odilo Pedro Scherer, addresses the conference participants. He expresses his esteem and gratitude to the presence and ministry of the Camillians in his archdiocese and in the church of Brazil. He gives a brief meditation on the moments of suffering and illness in man’s existence and how important is the presence of the church in this context of fragility which can be an advent of his salvation and hope.

In the afternoon, the various linguistic groups have presented their proposals for modification, integration and revision of the original text of the Statutes of parishes administered by the Camillians, in view of drawing out new guidelines for the entire Order as well as for its specific local ecclesial situation.

In the following day, the group will travel early for the pilgrimage to the shrine of our Lady of Aparecida, Patron Saint of Brazil, whose 300th year foundation is about to be celebrated this year.