At the first meeting of the new Provincial Council of the Laity, on 16 June 2018, it was decided that a new form of Provincial formation and awareness meetings would be tested, open to all.
Although the Province does not cover a wide area in territorial terms, there are Fraternities even in places where there is not, or there no longer is a Dominican presence, and this makes it difficult for the Fraternities to pursue their regular life and to form new members.
In order to help these brothers and sisters and support the Formation guides, it was decided to organise Provincial Formation Meetings open to all Formation Officers and to members who have not yet made their lifetime promise. The invitation will also be extended to anyone who wishes to know more about the Dominican laity.
The aim is to go more deeply into certain fundamental aspects of the Rule and of Dominican life, to allow the Formation Officers to compare notes and share their experiences, and to present the Dominican style of the Province. Those interested in the laity will have an opportunity to experience at first hand the charism of St Dominic and Dominican spirituality.
These meetings will be preceded by the work of revision of the Provincial formation programme, which will begin in September with a meeting of the Provincial Council extended to the Presidents of the Fraternities and to the Formation Officers.
At least two meetings per year are planned, under the guidance of the Provincial President, Massimiliano Zonza of the Fraternity of Cagliari, and the Provincial Promoter, Fr Antonio Cocolicchio op, of the Priory of Santa Maria sopra Minerva, Rome. They will be assisted in this work by the Formation Officer of the Province, a new role in the Council, whose task will be to coordinate the activities of the Formation Officers. The Council has elected Anna Tatar of the Fraternity of Santa Maria sopra Minerva, Rome, to this role.
The group undertaking preparation of these meetings will also have the support of the Communication Officer, another new role in the Council, to which Edoardo Mattei of the Fraternity of the Angelicum, Rome, has been elected.
The first meeting will take place on 29 and 30 November and 1 December.
Fr Rui Carlos Lopes op, Promoter General of the Laity, has expressed his appreciation of this initiative, ensuring us that he will do all he can to be present and to speak at the meeting.
There are at present approximately 20 lay Dominicans in formation at the various stages (reception, temporary promise, lifetime promise).
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