From April 18-20, 2023, the leadership of the Conventual Franciscan Federation (CFF) met for their Spring Assembly in St. Bonaventure Friary in Chicago, Illinois, USA.
Among the topics discussed was a further collaboration among the Jurisdictions, initial and continuing formation issues, Justice and Peace initiatives, etc. The spiritual service of the friars to the Secular Franciscans (OFS) and the Militia of the Immaculata (M.I.) were also considered. The Procurator General, Friar Maurizio DI PAOLO, was present for a workshop on questions concerning the abuse crisis in the United States, Canada, Great Britain, Ireland and Australia. The Most Reverend John STOWE, Bishop of Lexington, Kentucky, USA, participated via the Zoom Internet platform, as did Dr. Paul ASHTON, an expert who works with religious communities and dioceses on these issues.
On Thursday afternoon, April 20, the friars visited the nearby Conventual Franciscan Parish of Mary, Mother of God, which is the combination of three parishes: St. Thomas of Canterbury, St. Ita and St. Gregory the Great. The Parish of Mary, Mother of God has the largest number of different ethnicities in the Archdiocese of Chicago―over thirty. The staff and parishioners are greatly committed to serving the poor, the new evangelization, and fostering culture (music, art, etc.).
The next CFF assembly will take place next November in the State of Florida, USA. It will be followed by a joint assembly with the friars of the Federación América Latina Conventuales (FALC) in Bogota, Columbia, in January of 2024.