July 24th 2006
To all the members of the Vocationist family
May God the Holy Spirit unite us more and more with the Son to the Father.
My reelection and the joy expressed by so many of you makes me feel smaller and smaller and inadequate; I fear that I may have aroused too much hope; I pray and I ask you to pray because these hopes don't become a disappointment. Thanks for the prayers of before, during and after the Chapter. Thanks for the vote of confidence and for your best wish.
I see my reelection as God’s will for me; Fr. Justin teaches me that whatever happens me against or without my will, it is God’s will for me. As such I have accepted to serve as Father General for a second term. Despite my lacks and limitations, I commit myself before God and before all of you to keep on doing my very best. I thank God Trinity, O. L. of the Divine Vocations and Fr. Justin that have accompanied me by the hand during my first term and I pray that they keep on doing it for the second.
Heartedly, I thank Fr. Castiglione, Fr. Maiorano and Fr. Pelella for their precious cooperation in my first term as general councillors. A sincere and warm "Welcome" to the new General Councillors, Fr. Alfonso Limone (Vicar), Fr. Calogero Brancato (parishes and Vocationary), Fr. Ciro Sarnataro (Dean), Fr. Anthony Rafael do Nascimento (Missions), D. Antonio Saturno (Secretary and Procurator) and Fr. Joseph Fasano (Econome). I am sure to be able to work with fraternity and efficiency with the new Council.
In the XIII General Chapter there have been quite a lot of novelties: the opening liturgy with the share of the people of God; delegates coming from seven nations; 22 delegates that have participated in the Chapter for the first time; delegates much younger than in previous chapters; the share of the various branches of the Vocationist family; the daily bulletins of electronic information; the voting done in the room of Fr Justin; the rhythm of prayer in various languages, the work of the chapter carried out in a systematic and constant rhythim and the closing of the Chapter with the thanksgiving concelebration at the mother house of our Vocationist Sisters..
Around the central theme of the incisiveness of our charisma the precious gems of opening, knowledge and appreciation of the other branches of our family and the commitment to a more efficient and mutual cooperation have come out; the urgency to formulate the Ratio Institutionis with the Ratio Formationis for every country, including the initial formation and the permanent one; the need of decentralization and the necessity of a better organization of the central government; the appreciation of the missions and our vocational apostolate and a myriad of ordinances and recommendations as the formation of an Italian province, the establishment of a technical office, the center for studies, of the council for economic affairs, the incompatibility of offices, suitable formation of the formators and of the missionaries, the continuation of the opera omnia, pastoral, vocational, homeletics aids etc.
The programmatic lines, the platforms on which we want to put the Congregation for the next six years are:
1. to keep on spreading among the religious and the people entrusted to our pastoral care the knowledge of our charisma in order to grow more and better in the Vocationist identity;
2. to increase the formation of the other branches of our Congregation and to find new ways of mutual cooperation;
3. to consolidate the religious communities, especially the new missions;
4. to prepare the Ratio Institutionis with the various formative plans for each country.
The interest, the enthusiasm, the good will manifested in the Chapter by all (but especially from those that would have liked sparing me the cross) they will remain dead letter if each of us doesn't commit himself to a Congregational work in an embrace of communion and sharing. I have all the good reasons of this world to believe and to hope that all of you will efficiently cooperate to the realization of these ideals.
Even if it was never expressly used in the chapter discussions, the word that summarizes most of the capitular discussions, the marching word that I give to myself and to all of you is: "Quality". A jump of quality is wanted and needed in our being and in our doing. It is not enough to pray, to teach, to do, to serve, to obey, to write, to work and to cooperate; we need to do it well! The quality of our being and of our doing will give light to our own self and our family, and it will render more glory to God Trinity and more quality service to the chosen ones of the Divine Vocations. The quality of our being and of our behaving is something contagious, it will intimately touch the life and the behavior of those who see us or come to know us; it will transform our life and our family.
In the past six years the Congregation has considerably grown in the number of the consecrated ones, of the houses, of the works and in its vocationistality. In the coming six years we want a qualitative growth.
This qualitative growth won't easily be measurable, but it is not invisible. We want qualòity in our life of prayer, in our community life, in our commitment for the vocations, in the pastoral zeal and in the sharing of the fruit of our work in order to keep on sustaining and forming the 350 young candidates that enliven our houses of formation. (Oh, How happy I am to share with you the joy of knowing that there are already thirteen aspirants in Indonesia and 20 in Madagascar! And that the construction work for the completion of the Vocationary of Pianura, Vilcabamba and Maasin goes on!) Help me not to close the doors to some good candidates only for lack of money or of space!
I count on yours generous and cheerful cooperation. Each one of us can do or give something. Nobody is too old or too sick not to be able to do or to give something. I cannot do it alone! Together, with the help of God, we can conquer the world to the Vocationistality and to the divine union.
Again thanks for your prayers, for your varied expressions of congratulations and for your cooperation. God needs you. The Congregation needs you. I need you. Lord, in your name, on your word, I will throw the nets.
Kindest regards, brotherly embraces and fatherly blessings. In union of prayer
Always at your service,
Father Louis M. Caputo, S.D.V. Of the Blessed Trinity