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The Visiting Councilor

The Visiting Councilor, Delegate of the Superior General, visits the Provinces entrusted to her as a sister among the sisters, to strengthen communion in the Institute.

“GC XXII confirms and extends, according to the constitutions art. 171, the practical interpretation of articles 120 and 132 of the Constitutions” (Acts GC XXII n ° 45).

The Visiting Councilor, Delegate of the Superior General, visits the Provinces entrusted to her as a sister among the sisters, to strengthen communion in the Institute.
She commits herself to know the reality that she will visit. She makes herself aware of the journeys and needs of the Provinces entrusted to her by dialoging with the Councilors of the Animation Sectors.

With the provincial and her council she prepares, plans, and verifies the visit by studying with them the way to ensure its continuity. She precedes the canonical visit, when it is possible, by a short visit.
In an attitude of listening to people and openness to different cultures, she accompanies the Provinces on their journeys and processes in view of growth in vocational unity, in the quality of the educational presence, and in the inculturation of the charism. She offers the Provinces, in particular situations, the opportunity for a more systematic sharing.

Each Interprovincial Conference has a Visiting Councilor as a Referent who, as far as possible, participates in the most significant meetings of the Conference.
The Visiting Councilor accompanies the paths of the Conferences, proposes reflection points for the interchange of the sisters between the Provinces, and for strengthening paths of solidarity and networking. She is a stable reference point for the Conferences.
She assumes the choice of coordination for communion expressed in the Formation Plan (articles 120 and 132) and urged by the Church and by the Magisterium of Pope Francis as a synodal path. The synodal style involves the Provincial communities, the Interprovincial Conferences, and the General Council in the search for ways to achieve ‘together’ visits that are more responsive to the needs of the FMA Institute in the various realities.

Sister Battagliola Paola
Sister Inoue Sumiko Maria Assunta
Sister Jacob Celine
Sister Mukase Chantal
Sister Neves Phyllis
Sister Riccioli Marta Liliana
Sister Lidia Strzelczyk

Canonical Visit

In the spirit of the origins.

In the Biographical Memoirs and in the Cronistoria of the FMA Institute there are some suggestions by Don Bosco and the practice of Mother Mazzarello on the Visit to the houses that reveal the spirit with which it is realized. Download the PDF

The thought of Don Bosco

In the Biographical Memories we read: “From the heart and from the lips of Don Bosco the wisest counsels were pronounced in every circumstance, but especially in private audiences and in conferences that he held for the confreres during his frequent visits to the individual houses. […]”.

He felt the need to see his children to cheer them up and encourage them in person. His commitment was to “see everything, examine everything, and speak familiarly with everyone, superiors and students” (MB X, 1017).
Regarding the visit to the houses by the Provincials and Major Superiors, Don Bosco recommended that we always go in the name of the Superior and that the confreres should be reminded of the observance of the Rules not by virtue of ‘I want’, but by virtue of the Rules themselves.

Mother Mazzarello, Woman of encounter

Mother Mazzarello knows, through the suggestions and the example of Don Bosco, that the visits can favor communion between the sisters and the communities.
From then, as a continuously traveling pilgrim, she tries to give birth to and consolidate communities in continuous conversion, where charity is lived, in which the love of God, perceived and daily nourished, becomes the regenerative force of fraternal and apostolic life.
Her visits were lived as a time of communion, of encounter, and of joy. She made the visit with love and knew how to grasp the small gestures and needs, arriving at each one personally. She considered the visits an opportunity for direct communication with the sisters with whom she had no daily contact.
She was a peasant woman who had never left her country, and now she travels. Her travels were numerous, close together; she wanted to be in direct contact, as much as possible, with the life of her daughters.
The style of the visits recalls the environment and the relationships lived in Mornese. She listened to all the sisters with infinite patience and charity, comforted them in their sufferings, and, while respecting and supporting authority, acknowledged when the sisters were right, and prudently provided for their needs. In the visits she observed everything, nothing escaped her, and gave the sisters the counsels she considered necessary to keep alive the religious spirit of the Congregation. Although not well educated, she was full of the science of the saints, and she made very wise and useful suggestions. 

She considered each visit a sign of God’s love, love accepted, given, and lived concretely in relationships with each sister, with the communities, and also outside the community environment.

(cf. Ferdinando MACCONO, Saint Mary D. Mazzarello, Founder and first Superior General of the Daughters of Mary Help of Christians II, Turin, Institute FMA 1960, 279-280).