Assumptionist Augustinians Elect New Superior-General

Congregation’s 32nd General Chapter Closes in Rome

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ROME, MAY 23, 2011 ( Father Benoît Grière of France, 53, has become the 10th leader of the Augustinians of the Assumption. He succeeds Father Richard Lamoureux of the United States, who had completed two six-year mandates.

The election took place during the 32nd General Chapter of the Assumptionists, which was held in Rome and attended by some 44 religious of the congregation. A new six member General Council was also elected, made up of religious from five different countries.

The Assumptionists are comprised of 834 religious and 45 novices, spread over 130 communities in 30 countries.

In addition to the election, the assembly implemented changes to adapt to demographic evolutions. A new «unified Province of Europe» will regroup the three current Provinces of France, Spain and Northern Europe by September 2014. Likewise, other continental regroupings will take place in order to strengthen solidarity and encourage cooperative action between Africa and Madagascar, between the three countries of Korea, the Philippines and Vietnam, and between the regions of South and North America.

The Assumptionists stated at the conclusion of their assembly that they «want to testify that hope is not dead: to welcome and announce the gift of God; to be agents of justice and peace, of dialogue and of unity; to implement Christ’s preference for the least.»

The Assumptionists’ current projects around the globe that embody these ideals include Bayard, the international press enterprise, Assumption College of Worcester, Massachussetts, ISEAB of Butembo universities in DR Congo, the St. Peter and St. Andrew Center of Bucharest, Romania, the humanitarian association To Accompany of Brussels, Belgium, and a network of bush schools in Tuléar, Madagascar.

For the first time in its history the assembly has officially opened the possibility of canonical constitution for laity within the congregation, called The Alliance. First launched in 2005, a dozen men and women participated in the first week of the chapter and defined with the religious the bases of a charter for all persons wishing to share the spirituality of the Assumptionists and to associate themselves more closely to its mission.

Another projects treated by the chapter involved Youth Ministry and the concern for vocations; the development of Assumption Volunteers who spend time freely supporting a congregational action; and the adaptation of the formation of young religious to international and to intercultural realities which characterize Assumptionist communities.

In concluding, the Assumptionist assembly renewed their three principal «fundamental orientations»: the Assumptionists want to be «Men of faith, men of communion, in solidarity with the poor and the least.»

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