Preparing for the General Chapter of Trogir

Croatia53 Every three years the Order of Preachers gathers for a General Chapter. While the nuns do not directly participate there are usually a few nuns invited as guests who participate in the discussions but don't vote.

We do participate in another way...through our life of prayer. One of our traditions is to begin special prayers one month before the General Chapter which are prayed after None. These prayers are a combination of praying to the Holy Spirit and praying for travelers. Why a whole month before? Probably because in the past it took the brethren a long time to travel to a General Chapter. In the early days of the Order the brethren were allowed to only travel by foot and so since then the Chapter was yearly, delegated brothers would be heading to the Chapter on foot months in advance, preaching as they went. We know from Bl. Jordan and other documents and letters from the Order that the brothers visited the monasteries of nuns, too, asking for their prayers for the success of the Chapter.

Another interesting fact: the brethren may make Ordinations for the nuns and Acts of the Chapter can be applied to the nuns as long as they aren't contrary to our Constitutions.

PRAYERS FOR THE GENERAL CHAPTER

To you have I lifted up my eyes, * you who dwell in the heavens; my eyes, like the eyes of slaves * on the hand of their lords.

Like the eyes of a servant * on the hand of her mistress, so our eyes are on the Lord our God * till he show us his mercy.

Have mercy on us, Lord, have mercy. * We are filled with contempt. Indeed all too full is our soul with the scorn of the rich, * (with the proud man's disdain). Glory be to the Father and to the Son * and to the Holy Spirit. As it was in the beginning is now and ever shall be * world without end. Amen.

Prioress: Come Holy Spirit All: Fill the hearts of your faithful, and enkindle in them the fire of your love; you who through the diversity of many languages, gathered the nations together in the unity of faith.

Prioress: Lord, have mercy All: Christ have mercy. Lord have mercy. All: Our Father…

Prioress: Send forth your Spirit, and they will be created. All: And you will restore the face of the earth. Prioress: Save your servants. All: Who trust in you, my God.

Prioress: Let us pray: O God, who has instructed the hearts of the faithful by the light of the Holy Spirit, grant that, in the same Spirit, we may relish what is right and ever rejoice in his consolation.

Listen, Lord, to our prayers and guide the steps of your servants along the path of your salvation; that in the journey through this fickle life they may always be protected by your help. Through Christ our Lord. All: Amen