at the Synod of Bishops
on New Evangelization
This item was published by ANS on Oct. 8.
(ANS - Rome) On Sunday, October 7 , the 13th Ordinary General Assembly of the Synod of Bishops opened officially. It’s charged with discussing the theme "The New Evangelization for the transmission of the Christian faith”—in other words, with how to revive the proclamation of the Gospel thruout the world. Fifteen members of the Salesian Family are participants, with different roles and expertise.
The Synod has brought together over 400 people, the highest number in the history of the synods. Of these, 37 are participants ex officio; 172 were elected by their respective episcopal conferences, 10 by the Union of Superiors General, and 3 by the Eastern Catholic Churches; another 40 were chosen directly by the Holy Father.
In addition there are 49 experts and 45 auditors, who include both men and women specialists or involved in evangelism in the six continents. Completing the list are some people with practical expertise, like the 5 attachés for printing, 32 assistants, and 30 translators.
Two Salesians are Synod members ex officio: the secretary of state of the Holy See, Cardinal Tarcisio Bertone, and Cardinal Angelo Amato, prefect of the Congregation for the Causes of Saints. Bishop Enrico dal Covolo, rector of the Pontifical Lateran University, was appointed by the Pope.
Five Salesian bishops were elected by their bishops conferences: Bishop Rosario Rosario Vella of Ambanja, Madagascar; Bishop Bernardo Miguel Bastres Florence of Punta Arenas, Chile; Archbishop Miguel Ignazio Bedini of Ispahan of the Latins in Iran, who is president of the episcopal conference; Archbishop Malayappan Chinnappa of Madras and Mylapore, India; and Archbishop Timothy Costelloe of Perth, Australia.
Among the 10 from male religious orders is our rector major, Fr. Pascual Chavez, who is president of the Union of Superiors General.
In the role of experts are Fr. Luiz Alves de Lima, SDB, from the Catechists Society of Latin America (Brazil); Fr. Cleto Pavanetto, SDB, professor emeritus of the School of Christian and Classical Letters of the Salesian Pontifical University in Rome; and Sr. Dalina Rosanna, FMA, former undersecretary of the Congregation for Institutes of Consecrated Life and Societies of Apostolic Life.
The group of auditors includes the superior general of the Salesian Sisters, Mother Yvonne Reungoat, FMA, and Fr. Renato De Guzman, SDB, chief assistant for pastoral care of the Grade School and High School Departments, Don Bosco Technical Institute in Makati City, Philippines, who is also director of the Philippines’ Episcopal Advisory Commission for Catechesis and Catholic Education.
Even in logistical tasks, the Congregation will make a contribution: Fr. Markus Graulich, SDB, an adviser to the general secretariat of the Synod of Bishops, was selected as press officer for the German language.