Roberto de Mattei
May 17, 2015
After the article we published on May 15th 2015 as to the end “of the Volpi era”, a bulletin signed by “Father Fidenzio” appeared on the Franciscans of the Immaculate’s site, wherein the Commissioner acknowledges that he was taken ill on April 29th, of “having started” his convalescence, and of being “on the point of” resuming normal work activity: which doesn’t explain how he was able to re-engage, as he says “in the full exercise of his governing tasks.” Respect for Father Volpi’s privacy stops us from giving further information about the actual conditions of his health.
We can confirm however, that following the ischemia he suffered, he is now in a rehabilitation centre, unable at present to carry out, both physically and mentally, the strenuous and demanding work which has been assigned to him by the Congregation for Religious.
The Vatican now finds itself having to decide whether to arrange for an immediate substitute or leave Father Volpi with the official title of the work while others govern the Institute in his stead, as happened in part anyway before his illness. Whether it be the latter or the former, the “Volpi era” is even so, over.
The real problem that is posed now for the post-Volpi era is this: will the Congregation for Religious maintain its intent in liquidating the Franciscan Friars and Sisters of the Immaculate, or will it take some steps back, aware of the catastrophic outcome of the operation initiated – let us remember – not by Father Volpi’s external administration, but by Monsignor Vito Angelo Todisco’s apostolic visit?
But most of all: will the Franciscan Friars and the Sisters of the Immaculate realize that the point of cohesion in a spiritual family, beyond the transient figure of the Founder, can be nothing other than a complex of unrenounceable, theological, spiritual and liturgical principles and that one of the causes of the present crumbling [of the order] is precisely the weakness of their reaction on this point?
[A Rorate translation by Francesca Romana.]