ITALY | Dominican Priestly Fraternities Continue to Grow in the Three Provinces of the Order
In Italy, there currently exist three Dominican Provinces from the previous six: the Province of St. Dominic in Northern Italy with its seat in the Convent of S. Maria delle Grazie in Milan; the Roman Province of St. Catherine of Siena with its seat in the Convent of S. Maria sopra Minerva in Rome; and the Province of St. Thomas Aquinas in Southern Italy with its seat in the Convent of S. Maria dell’Arco in Naples. All three have recently undertaken various works for the Dominican Priestly Fraternities.
Spiritual Retreat for Secular Priests in the Province of St. Dominic in Italy
From 10-14 November 2014, the community of St. Dominic in Varazze, played host to a spiritual course organized by the Priestly Fraternity of the Northern Italian Province, not only for the members of the fraternity but also for other secular priests who desired an experience of retreat in the company of the friars.
Though accompanied by harsh weather that battered the coastlines of Genova, the participants were enriched with insightful sharing given by Br. Daniele Mazzoleni, OP, Provincial Promoter of the fraternities, who is also the superior of the house, and by Don Angelo Belloni, secretary of the fraternity. The priests shared days of fruitful reflection on the life and ministry of the priesthood with inspiration from St. Catherine of Siena and the newly-beatified son of the Province of St. Dominic, Bl. Giuseppe Girotti. The activity was made more meaningful not only by the historical richness of the convent and the church, but also by the fraternal welcome of the friars’ community, which everyone experienced especially in the common liturgy, meals and recreation. They also enjoyed a visit to the nearby Shrine Basilica of Our Lady of Mercy in Savona.
On a sad note, however, a mass was especially offered by the participants on the conclusion of the event for the eternal repose of Br. Mazzoleni’s father, who passed away on the previous day. The Priestly Fraternity of the Province of St. Dominic in Italy was established by its former Provincial Br. Riccardo Barile, OP, in 2011. It is based on the Dominican house of Agognate in Novara, and currently has 15 members.
Rite of Profession in the Fraternity for the Province of St. Thomas Aquinas in Italy
On 14 December 2014, the Dominican Province of St. Thomas Aquinas in Italy welcomed Don Gerardo Perillo of the Diocese of Salerno into the Priestly Fraternities of St. Dominic. The Prior Provincial, Br. Franceso La Vecchia, OP, presided over the ceremony held at the Shrine of the Madonna dell’Arco in S. Anastasia, Naples.
Born on 12 November 1963, Don Gerardo was ordained a priest on 24 March 1999. He is currently the hospital chaplain of the Santa Maria Della Speranza in Battipaglia in the province of Salerno.