Day 6: The reports continue: the General Treasurer
After enjoying a day of relaxation and
tourism on Sunday, the capitulars returned to the Chapter Hall to begin a new
week of listening, reflecting and discussing. To start the week, Fr. Pawel
ZAJAC, a Polish capitular from the Region of Europe, presented this week’s
reflection on the Chapter’s theme of conversion.
He defined conversion as a rediscovery of
true meaning, real meaning in those things that can tend to discourage us. We
need no other reward, other than knowing that we are doing God’s will.
Conversion calls for sacrifice and generosity in order to serve God as God
deserves. He asked how much sacrifice we are willing to accept in living our
value of faith; our chastity, our poverty, our obedience, our perseverance, the
Eucharist, the Church, community life, the Holy Father, Oblate tradition. Many experience problems and frustration
that make optimism difficult, but conversion means that day after day, we must
come back to the values of religious life. Daily, we need to turn from a life
centered on self to a life centered in Christ, finding Christ in the persons
near us. Without sacrifice, there is o chance for an effective conversion.
Rule 126a states that the Superior
General will make a report to the Chapter about the “financial situation” of
the Congregation. Traditionally, he delegates this task to the General
Treasurer whose task is described in Rule 148c: “Under
the direction of the Superior General and Council, he administers the common
property and possessions of the Congregation. He also exercises a role of
animation in regard to the responsible stewardship of temporal goods and the
ongoing formation of Provincial Treasurers.”
Father Rufus WHITLEY, who has held the post of General Treasurer since 2001,
gave an extensive report with the help of PowerPoint slides containing many
charts and figures. Oblates can receive a copy of this report by sending Fr.
Rufus an e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org.
In the afternoon, after responding to questions and comments from the
capitulars about his report, Fr. Rufus presented information concerning the
Oblate International Investment Pool (OIP).
After supper, the capitulars
were invited to hear a presentation from the Association of Oblate Institutes of Higher Studies, a group called for by the
2004 General Chapter. The presentation was made by Frs. Warren BROWN and
Andrzej JASTRZEBSKI. The members, who meet annually, represent the
following institutions: St. Paul University, Ottawa, Canada; Oblate School of
Theology, San Antonio, United States; St. Joseph’s Theological Institute,
Cedara, Republic of South Africa; St. Bernard Oblate Scholasticate, Obra,
Poland; Notre Dame University, Cotabato, Philippines; and St. Eugene de Mazenod
Theology School, Kinshasa, Democratic Republic of Congo.