Thursday, May 2, 2013

Father Stefano Maria Manelli is 80 -- Successful History of the Franciscans of the Immaculata: Traditional and Missionary

Edit: you mean you can be Franciscan and still have magnificent and beautiful Liturgy?

Father Stefano Maria Manelli 80 - History of the Franciscans of the Immaculate Conception: altrituell and missionary

(Rome) On the 1st of May Father Stefano Maria Manelli, the Superior General and founder of the Franciscans of the Immaculate (FFI) turned 80.

As the year gathered together yesterday,  members of the Order founded by Father Manelli and organizations associated with the Marian Shrine of Our Lady of Good Counsel in Frigento Campania gathered in southern Italy, where the mother house of  the male religious branch is located. The brothers and sisters thanked and asked the Lord in prayer through the intercession of Mary Immaculate for their religious father.

The religious family founded by Father Stefano Maria is one of the success stories traditionally associated in the Catholic Church and represents a most remarkable success story. The Franciscans of the Immaculate have adopted the traditional rite five years ago after a long journey of preparation. International orders will be maintained the entire liturgy in the Tridentine rite. They keep the Franciscan-Marian spirit with their evangelical radicalism including poverty, which Pope Francis supports, but - and this is something special - in the Old Rite. Unlike other traditional communities  the Franciscans of the Immaculate are engaged in traditional missionary work. The Great Commission is a constitutive element of their charism; they go out of their cloisters, seek direct contact with the people who are on the front line in the defense of non-negotiable values and use their apostolate in the modern media and means of communication.

Father Stefano Maria marked by Padre Pio of Pietrelcina and Father Maximilian Kolbe

Its founder, Father Stefano Maria Manelli, was born on 1 May 1933, in what was then Fiume, Italy, and today is the Croatian town of Rijeka on the upper Adriatic. He was the sixth of 21 children. His parents, the servants of God Settimio Manelli and Licia Gualandris, have had their beatification process begun on 20 December 2010. The spiritual leader of the family was the holy Capuchin, Padre Pio of Pietrelcina. From him, the young Stefano received his first Holy Communion in 1938.

The family had moved into the southern Italian province of Apulia, where Padre Pio lived.  Stefano was visited from the 8th December 1945 at the age of 12 years, the minor seminary of Cupertino. He entered the Friars Minor, and took simple vows on 4 October 1949, which on 27 May 1954 was followed by solemn perpetual vows.

On 30 October 1955 he was consecrated at Christ the King, a particularly precious feast to him as a priest.

Dissertation on the Immaculate Conception - Back to the Franciscan Sources

1960 PhD Father Stefano received his doctorate at the Seraphicum, the Pontifical Faculty of Theology in Rome, with a thesis on the Immaculate Conception. The work explains the choice of his community's name.  He then followed by teaching Patristics and Mariology at the convent's seminaries at the Archdiocesan Seminary of Benevento and the Institute of Religious Sciences of Avellino. From 1982-1988 Father Stefano Maria was twice provincial of the Order of Friars Minor of the Province of Naples.

Around 1965 began a gradual rediscovery and long observation of the Franciscan sources and the writings of the Holy Father Maximilian Kolbe for him.

The call of the Second Vatican Council, to return to the sources of religious renewal and adjust the proclamation of faith to the changed circumstances of the time, knew Father Stefano Maria as reputation in the footsteps of the Founder Francis of Assisi completely Franciscan life after the example of Saint Maximilian Kolbe to lead the John Paul II as "St. Francis of the 20th Century "called.

In 1970 the new Franciscan-Marian Journey - 1990 Order of founding

On 24 December 1969  Father Stefano Maria and his brother, Father Gabriele Maria Pellettieri asked the Superior General of the Friars Minor for the permission to lead a renewed, more rigorous Franciscan life, which was tied into the foundation . A Franciscan-Marian manner of life they called the "Marian traces of Franciscan life." The result was in the first Marian House in August 1970 at the Marian Shrine of Our Lady of Good Counsel in Avellino Frigento.

Over the years, the two brothers grew more and more  inspired by the ideal of evangelical radicalism. This increase, the special charism, the consolidation of a particular manner of life, and others opposing trends in parts of the Mother house led the Order, after 20 years on 22 June 1990, to the establishment of a separate order. The Church's recognition of diocesan right was professed in a corresponding decision by Pope John Paul II, through the Archbishop of Benevento, Monsignor Carlo Minchiatti. On 1 January 1998 the recognition of the Order was established by papal law. A special feature has been added to the three traditional religious vows poverty, chastity and obedience, a fourth vow, the unconditional consecration to the Immaculate Virgin Mother of God.

On 1 November 1982 Father Stefano Maria and Father Gabriele Maria, founded the first community of Franciscan Sisters of the Immaculate in Novaliches, Philippines. The female branch, which was passed in its inception phase was led by Father Gabriele Maria Pellettieri, lives according to the same Franciscan-Marian ideal of the brothers. Today there are more than 50 branches of the Franciscan Sisters on all continents. The Order has more than 350 sisters.

In 2006  the youngest of the family followed with the Order of Poor Clares, a contemplative branch of the Immaculate Conception, which includes today four cloistered convents with more than 40 sisters.

Franciscans and Franciscan The Lay Association of the Immaculate Conception

8 September 1990 there followed alongside the male and female religious branch, the establishment of a lay association, the Mission of the Immaculate Mediatrix (MIM). The laity living the religious ideals in their respective state and various stages of Consecration to the Immaculate Virgin Mother of God (Missionaries of the Immaculate Conception with consecration, Missionaries of the Immaculate Conception with a private vow as Franciscan Tertiaries of the Immaculate Conception).

2008, the General Chapter undertooktook the decision to return as a community to the traditional form of the Roman Rite rehabilitated by Pope Benedict XVI.  in the motu proprio Summorum Pontificum as an extraordinary form of the Roman Rite and returned to the Church.

Monastery in Kitzbühel - In the German areas living life connected to  a religious tradition is no easier

In the German-speaking world, a monastery of the Franciscans of the Immactulate, was founded in 2002 in Kitzbühel in Tyrol. The then Archbishop of Salzburg, Georg Eder, gave the Order the abandoned Capuchin convent.

Not all of the young religious received the same favorable reception. Being connected to a religious tradition is not so easy for the Franciscans in the areas where German is spoken. Two other monasteries  founded were thwarted by the resistance of the local churches.

The Franciscans of the Immaculate showed interest in 2007 in taking over  the Franciscan monastery of San Candido, South Tyrol, which was rejected by the then Bishop of Bolzano-Bressanone, the Capuchin Wilhelm Egger.  Since 2012, the monastery has remained empty.

In 2010 the Capuchin monastery on the Ried im Innkreis dissolved their last monastery in Upper Austria. Again, the Franciscans of the Immaculate were interested in the takeover of the monastery. "These and other rumors are their concern," the newspaper of the Diocese of Linz immediately wrote. Because of internal resistance in the Church, the order was denied even this branch. In contrast to San Candido, the monastery in Ried is at least not yet empty. In 2012 it was purchased by an Indian Carmelites. Other members of the order were established in Kerala in 1831 by the Congregation of the Carmelites of Mary Immaculate, are also Indian

The Franciscans of the Immaculate are now represented on all five continents. The order counts all together, some 650 members of religious orders have stirred an increase in vocations. They promote the Tridentine Rite and go to the street and around the world as missionaries.

Since 23 June 1990  Father Stefano Maria Manelli has been Minister General of the Franciscans of the Immaculate, whose Generalate is in Rome.

Text: Giuseppe Nardi
Image: Franciscans of the Immaculate / Vocazione religiosa
Trans: Tancred

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Anonymous said...

" You mean you can be a Franciscan and have a magnificent beautiful Liturgy"? "Gladness".
Uplifting. Wonderful post.

Anonymous said...

Please not that the Order of Franciscans from which the the friars of the Immaculate grew was the Order of Friars Minor Conventual. Yes while there are praiseworthy features of the friars of the Immaculata as with many new foundations there are concerns not to do with Orthodoxy or the support of tradition but maybe an internal rigor which can be stressed to the deteriment of a healthy human discipline of life such as lack of contact with family( being forbidden to visit family) lack of hygene, overly rigorist penances etc. The desire for authentic renewal of religious life must be aware of these issues . My the Most Sacred Heart of Jesus triumph through the Immaculata

Tancred said...

Welcome to religious life...

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Anonymous said...

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