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Official Greetings from the Vatican PDF Print E-mail

Secretariat of State Sector of General Affairs

Vatican, April 3, 2017

Fr. Superior General,

Having been informed of the celebration of the 33rd general chapter of the Augustinians of the Assumption, His Holiness, Pope Francis, sends warm greetings to all its participants and he assures them that he will be with them in spirit at this important moment for the Assumptionist mission in the world.

The theme that you have chosen for your chapter, “New Wine in Fresh Wineskins: So that Jesus Christ may be proclaimed to the men and women of our day,” touches upon one of the major concerns of the Holy Father. In his homily this past February 2, he underlined this in a special way, “All of us are aware of the multicultural transformation we are experiencing; no one doubts this. Hence, it is all the more important for consecrated men and women to be one with Jesus, in their lives and in the midst of these great changes. Our mission – in accordance with each particular charism – reminds us that we are called to be a leaven in this dough.” In this light, giving thanks to God for the work accomplished by the Assumptionists at the service of the Church’s mission to the world, the Pope invites you to renew your missionary commitment boldly and generously. He encourages you in a particular way to pursue your fraternal presence within the Catholic Church of the Byzantine rite in Bulgaria.

Last Updated on Monday, 01 May 2017 10:47
The official opening of the 33rd General Chapter of the Assumptionists PDF Print E-mail

The official opening of the 33rd General Chapter of the Assumptionists

2017-04-28 - Lyon

It's gone for three weeks!

The last capitulants expected at Ecully (the delegation of Madagascar, laymen and members of the technical team) joined the green alleys of Valpré. The official opening of the 33rd General Chapter of the Assumptionists is gradually coming closer to this April evening. Friendly arrivals and accolades took place in the main hall of the reception center, which was transformed into a mini forum of continents. As early as Thursday evening, in his welcoming address, Father General Benoît Grière set the tone, inviting the capitulants who had come from the four corners of the Assumptionist horizon to live a never-banal spiritual adventure. Our assembly stressed the new face of the congregation:

"Our physiognomy changes with time. For the first time we welcome brothers from countries that have never been represented in a general chapter: a Tanzanian religious, a brother from the Philippines, a brother from Burkina-Faso, an Egyptian. Times change: for the first time in a long time we have no brothers from the Netherlands, Spain or England among us. The most important is the love of diversity; Not just his respect, but the search for it. In Lyons, I very naturally remember the beautiful expression of St. Francis de Sales, who asked to live "unidiversity"; That is to say, unity and diversity in the same movement of the heart (Treaty of the Love of God, Book II, Chapter II). "


Fr. Frans Desmet, AA (Gwangju, Korea)

When, in the spring of 1990, Fr. Claude Maréchal, the superior general at the time, launched the initial appeal for volunteers to participate in the future foundation in Korea, I knew only two things about this country. First, there had been a war there between 1950 and 1953. The oldest of my cousins had fought as part of the Allied Forces. Every night at home my family would sit around the radio listening to the news from the war front. Second, of course, was the smashing success of the 1988 Summer Olympics held in Korea. That was it!

The Celebration

25th anniversary of the Assumptionist Presence in Korea

Now here it is 25 years since I arrived. We delayed the celebration date by a few months to accommodate as many guests as possible. Unfortunately, the current archbishop, Most Rev. Hygino Kim, president of the episcopal conference, was in Rome and could not attend; however, his auxiliary, Most Rev. OK Simon, participated together with two archbishops emeriti, Most Revs. Victorino Youn and Andréa Choi, both of whom have been wonderful friends of the community. Also present, of course, were our provincial, Fr. Benoît Gschwind, and Fr. General’s delegate for Asia, Fr. Bernard Holzer, accompanied by Br. Rex Navarro from Manila. We were also happy to welcome Fr. Pierre Nguyen Van Hieu of the community in Vinh (Vietnam) visiting Fr. Paul Hai, who works with Vietnamese immigrants in the diocese of Gwangju.

Last Updated on Wednesday, 26 April 2017 08:33

Terry Hegarty, editor of Bayard’s Living FaithThe answer, as Terry Hegarty, editor of Bayard’s Living Faith and one of two presenters at the April 2 ‘Conversations at the Center,’ is ‘yes.’

Hegarty, along with Jaime Gil, a graduate student at Boston College’s STM, each offered reflections on social media and how the communication tools relate to life in the Church.

Both focused on the positives and negatives. Hegarty, who went first, described the people who utilize social media as a “vast assembly”—and a perfect opportunity for evangelization, especially in the Assumptionist spirit. Sure, the tenor of social media is often angry—and that’s because a lot of people are unhappy—but that doesn’t mean the church should shy away from utilizing it.

Leading Botanist, Member of Pontifical Academy to Discuss Pope Francis’s Stance on Climate Change During Talk at Assumption PDF Print E-mail

Assumption College

WORCESTER, MA (April 4, 2017)—Peter H. Raven, Ph.D., a leading botanist and advocate of conservation and biodiversity, will discuss Pope Francis’s 2014 Encyclical “Laudato si”, a powerful call of attention to the enormous challenge of global climate change, in his lecture, “Laudato si’: Saving Creation, Saving Ourselves.” Dr. Raven will speak on Monday, April 24 at 7 p.m. in the Salon of Assumption’s La Maison building, located at 500 Salisbury Street.

According to Dr. Raven, the world has changed profoundly during the Christian era, with a rapidly increasing 7.4 billion individuals, sharply divided between rich and poor, consuming far more potentially sustainable resources than the world holds.  “With a billion people in 1815 or so, we were already cultivating or grazing about a third of the world’s surface, our numbers growing rapidly to 3.5 billion in 1970 and more than doubling since then,” said Dr. Raven.  “By the 19th century, the accentuation of social inequality prompted much concern among thinking people with Pope Leo XIII’s 1891 Encyclical Rerum novarum signaling serious concern many on the part of the Church.”


Christ Is Risen!

O God, who on this day, through your Only Begotten Son, have conquered death and unlocked for us the path to eternity, grant, we pray, that we who keep the solemnity of the Lord's Resurrection may, through the renewal brought by your Spirit, rise up in the light of life. Through our Lord Jesus Christ, your Son. Amen.
(Collect, Easter Sunday Mass)


We adore you, O Christ, and we bless you.

Christ became obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross. Because of this, God greatly exalted him and bestowed on him the name which is above every other name. Praise to you, Lord Jesus Christ, King of endless glory!
(Verse before the Gospel)

Authentic Prayer: Battling Distractions PDF Print E-mail


David Torkington • March 23, AD2017

Did you know that you can’t really pray without distractions? Don’t take my word for it, take the word of St Teresa of Avila. When she went to confession to St Peter of Alcantara she told him that she couldn’t pray any longer because of the distractions that attacked her every time she tried to pray. He told her that you can’t really pray without them. If that is not enough to convince you, read about Jesus and the distractions and temptations that he had to combat during his forty days in the desert. The first Christians had similar experiences when they tried to follow his example in the forty days before Easter by setting aside extra time for daily prayer.

When Prayer Becomes Difficult

For those who take prayer seriously and journey on beyond the fizz and pop of first fervour, what was once easy and filled with sweetness and light will become dark and difficult and full of distractions and temptations. Prayer does not grow because distractions and temptations gradually disappear it grows because they get stronger and stronger and the ensuing battle is the place where true Christian prayer reaches its height. Beginners always think it is about having nice feelings and emotional highs. Romantics think it is all about having feelings of inner peace, and the latest gurus from the East, seem to think it is all about having high states of transcendental awareness and mastering the techniques that lead to Nirvana. When St Francis came back from his first serious attempts at prayer, he came back so exhausted that even his friends hardly recognized him. He probably overdid it as beginners often do, but the truth is, trying to fend off distractions and temptations in prayer can be rather exacting for those who persevere when they are tempted to throw the towel in too soon and turn on the telly.



This is the Body that will be given up for you; this is the Chalice of the new covenant in my Blood, says the Lord; do this, whenever you receive it, in memory of me.
(Communion Antiphon)



Six days before the Passover, when the Lord came into the city of Jerusalem, the children ran to meet him; in their hands they carried palm branches and with a loud voice cried out: Hosanna in the highest! Blessed are you, who have come in your abundant mercy! 
(Palm Sunday, Entrance Antiphon)

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