The Chapter of the Province of Australia was held on December 1-4, 2008, in the former seminary complex in Plumpton, N.S.W. The General Minister, Br. Mauro Jöhri presided so I attended as an observer and interpreter. Besides Mauro, there were 28 other delegates at the Chapter, plus a few observers.
What especially struck me about the Chapter was the willingness of the brothers to look forward in faith. As I mentioned in my post-visitation blog entry, the Province has been working for many years to redefine the image of Capuchins in Australia, from that of an Italian Order that works principally with Italians to a multi-cultural Order working in a wide variety of ministries, but with a special emphasis on youth ministry.
The positive, forward-looking spirit was undoubtably helped by the fact that the Province has been experiencing a good influx of new vocations. In fact, the Province's six postulants paid a visit to the Chapter one day. Br. Robert Stewart gave a very interesting presentation on the Province's efforts in the area of vocation promotion and the mentality of "Generation Y".