American-Cassinese Congregation

The Constitutions and the Directory

 

Part I: Matters Pertaining to the Individual Monasteries

Chapter II: The Abbot and Governance of the Monastery

Article 2: The Monastic Chapter

C 25. All matters of importance concerning the life of the community are proper material for the consideration of the monastic chapter. At times the chapter meets to assist the abbot by offering counsel; at times when its consent is required before the abbot can act; and at times to act collegially in those cases specified in the proper law of the Congregation.

D 25.1. The establishment of the agenda for the chapter is the responsibility of the abbot, though individual monks or groups of monks may suggest items for inclusion, according to the practice of the local community.

D 25.2. Announcement of a chapter meeting and publication of the agenda are to be made with adequate advance notice.

C 26. The chapter is composed of the capitulars of the monastery, that is, those monks who have professed solemn vows. All capitulars enjoy full active and passive voice in the chapter, subject to such limitations as may be provided for in universal law or the proper law of the Congregation.

D 26.1. A capitular may also be a monk who has professed simple perpetual vows and subsequently been granted chapter rights by the chapter.

D 26.2. The chapter of each monastery may permit other members of the community to attend meetings of the monastic chapter without the right to vote.

D 26.3. Capitulars have the obligation to make known sincerely their opinions on those matters where counsel is required in order for the abbot to act (CIC 127.3).

D 26.4. Capitulars are obliged to maintain secrecy regarding matters both of consent and counsel if the seriousness of the matter requires it. The abbot has the right to insist on the obligation of secrecy (CIC 127.3).

C 27. All capitulars must be summoned with adequate notice for consideration of those matters of special importance that are specified by the proper law of the Congregation. For other matters at least those capitulars resident at the monastery are to be summoned for a meeting of the chapter.

D 27.1. All capitulars of the monastery must be summoned for consideration of the following matters:

  1. Any change of status or official division of a community, including the establishment or adoption of a dependent priory and the petition to raise a dependent priory to the status of an abbey;
  2. The incurring of an obligation that would create a total net debt obligation of an amount, specified periodically by the general chapter, that requires the consent of the President and his council;
  3. The acceptance, relinquishment, or transfer of a major apostolate.

D 27.2. The chapter of each monastery may specify additional matters that require the summoning of all capitulars, including the incurring of a debt obligation less than that indicated in D 27.1.2.

D 27.3. The election of an abbot has its own provisions in the proper law of the Congregation.

C 28. The chapter is convoked by the abbot or, because of necessity and at the abbot’s direction, by the prior or another capitular. The chapter must be convoked for those matters specified in universal law and the proper law of the Congregation; and also when two-thirds of the members of the council of seniors request it.

D 28.1. The consent of the monastic chapter is required for the abbot to act in all instances specified by universal law, by the proper law of the Congregation or by the decision of the local monastic chapter, among which are the following:

  1. To authorize certain extraordinary expenditures according to the financial norms of the Congregation;
  2. To grant a lease extending beyond nine years or for an indefinite period;
  3. To authorize certain alienation or contracting of debts according to the financial norms of the Congregation and the universal law;
  4. To establish a novitiate in a dependent priory;
  5. To send a novice to the novitiate of another monastery of the Congregation:
  6. To admit a candidate to the novitiate;
  7. To admit a novice to first profession;
  8. To admit a junior monk to solemn profession;
  9. To extend a junior monk’s temporary profession beyond six years;
  10. To admit a candidate to probation as a claustral oblate;
  11. To admit a claustral oblate to the community;
  12. To establish a dependent priory;
  13. To issue a charter for a dependent priory;
  14. To allow a novice for a dependent priory that does not have its own novitiate to make the novitiate outside the founding abbey;
  15. To delegate to the prior of a dependent priory the right to admit candidates for novitiate and profession, with the consent of only the quasi-chapter;
  16. To allow a dependent priory to seek the status of an abbey;
  17. To suppress a dependent priory;
  18. To seek dependent status for the abbey itself or to allow a dependent priory to change its dependent affiliation;
  19. To admit a candidate for transfer to probationary periods and final transfer;
  20. To readmit a monk who left the monastery legitimately without his having to repeat the novitiate.

D 28.2. The abbot must consult the monastic chapter in all instances specified by universal law, by the proper law of the Congregation or by the decision of the local monastic chapter, among which are the following:

  1. To grant a lease, in more serious cases, that would have a notable effect on the interests of the community;
  2. To establish the usual period for temporary profession.

D 28.3. The monastic chapter acts collegially in all instances specified by universal law or by the proper law of the Congregation, among which are the following:

  1. To elect an abbot;
  2. To elect half the members of the council of seniors;
  3. To postpone the election of an abbot and request governance by an administrator;
  4. To elect a delegate and substitute to the general chapter;
  5. To elect tellers for an abbatial election;
  6. To request suppression.

  

American-Cassinese Congregation * Table of Contents * Next
 


 

Copyright 2001-2013 American-Cassinese Congregation. All rights reserved.
Revised: 11/06/13 - Webweaver