Advent Letter 2018, brother responsible

Dear brothers,

On this feast day of our brother Charles we begin Advent: the weeks of hope that are a reflection of the hope of all humanity. Our humanity, in permanent crisis, a humanitarian crisis with many aspects, pains all of us, and we cannot hide it in our Church or remain indifferent. May celebrations with our communities, personal prayer, life in fraternity, be of closeness to that part of humanity with whom we live in our places and in those who are far away. Advent motivates us to listen to the voice that cries in the desert of all those who raise their voice for survival, in their desire for peace, work, and freedom. Humanity keeps hoping for liberation; the poor who hope for salvation, those threatened by war, the displaced searching for a secure place… There are millions of people in this situation. For them too Jesus is proclaimed and we, as missionaries, ought to proclaim him.

The Church is living through a difficult moment because of the crisis caused by the allegations of the abuse of minors, and Pope Francis is responding with humility and courage to the world. This is a testament to the search for the truth. Francis too is a witness to the truth.

We are preparing our World Assembly 2019. We are called to reflect on our identity as diocesan missionary priests in the charism of Charles de FOUCAULD. This is a task for all the brothers, supporting the regional responsibles, praying for all the brothers of the world, for the fraternities that are beginning and those that are ageing.


Every day we receive bad news of men and women, children, young people and the elderly, who suffer from causes that are not always clear to public opinion and the media. We know that it depends often on the hidden interests of economic powers and governments who hide very harsh realities in their countries, even if they belong to the “First World”. Victims of wars, of violence, of drug-trafficking, of the male domination over women in many cultures, the victims of poverty, cry out in this wilderness, where voices demanding justice abound. Voices that intermingle with others that seek vengeance, or those of “nothing is going on here” or “Go back to your country”. We too have a voice, the voice of Jesus, the one announced by the prophets. A voice that should emerge from our faith, our missionary vocation, in the style of Nazareth which is to be with the people of our town or city, with the most humble among them, because only the humble teach us to be humble. Brother Charles discovered Jesus in the midst of the simple people: may we learn from him.


This Advent time is an invitation to listen, to stop the clock and, in a contemplative attitude to listen to the Word, the silence of God in adoration, and to listen to our brothers: our brothers of the Fraternity, brother priests of our diocesan presbyterate who, sometimes, are hard for us to listen to and accept because prejudices kill dialogue and encounter; the people who come to us seeking answers to their problems, or who share in pastoral, social, work with us, or, simply, are our neighbours. Let us open the door, let us leave the best place in our house for whoever seeks, and not accustom ourselves to a dynamic of good advice and easy words. To show our poverty, our limitations for fixing “damaged machines”, wounded hearts, is to allow God to act. He is indispensable. It is he who heals. Jesus is not indifferent to anything, and this Advent he encourages us to open our hearts and to allow ourselves to be inundated by the love of God and the love of the people. Let us recover the joy of following Jesus and help many sad people to transform their failure into triumph, to love themselves a little more.


We are all suffering the consequences of child abuse hidden in many dioceses of the world. The Church is losing credibility, influence, etc. We could just say that this has always happened, that it was inevitable… We would not be faithful to the truth. We know that this open crisis has not yet ended. Pope Francis is also suffering for all of this, and is facing the music, asking forgiveness on behalf of those who did harm, listening, opening paths for a solution that offers justice for the victims, and this man deserves our support. Let us live in communion with Pope Francis, with enemies in his own Church, but with the support of all good people, whether believers or not, who see in Francis a prophet of our time, a consistent man who, despite being “head of State”, is a human being, sensitive to the suffering of humanity. I am sure that, from all this crisis, something very positive will emerge for the life of the Church and the proclamation of the Kingdom. Let us unite our prayer for fraternity with the Pope, wherever we may be.


102 years ago, Charles de FOUCAULD definitively placed himself into the hands of the Father. Today is a day to give thanks to God for him, for what he transmitted to us with his intuitions, for the mission he carried out with the people who were his neighbours, for his crazy dreams. Brother Charles has helped us in our vocation and our spirituality to live in friendship with Jesus and with people, in the Nazareth that we each live, with our age and desire to live, in silence and in proclamation. It is a gift from God that deserves our continuous thanks. Let us take time to value this gift: let us place in this day’s adoration before Jesus all that has come to us from Charles de FOUCAULD which, probably, are not so much his spiritual writings as his testimony of life, of love, of abandonment, of trust and generosity.

Let us make the prayer of abandonment even if it is hard to accept that we still have much left to make it completely ours.


From the 15th to the 30th of January 2019 we will celebrate our World Fraternity Assembly in Cebu, Philippines. The central theme is to deepen our character as diocesan missionary priests in the charism of Charles de FOUCAULD. Everything concerning the Assembly is announced on our web-page

On the site’s green Home Bar is the preparatory questionnaire, the Assembly program, the registration sheet… So far there are few inscriptions received and only one continent (America) has presented the answers to the questionnaire, as well as some regional fraternities. It is advisable that we do not leave these tasks to the last moment. Courage with everything. I know that we are all very busy and we have little time. Let’s make an effort. It fills me with joy to receive emails with inscriptions and answers to the questionnaire, and I understand the difficulties that this implies for some fraternities.

All the regional responsibles or delegates, previous international responsibles and the continental responsibles will be coming to the Assembly. Some of our brothers cannot pay for their trips, because of the situations in their country. The world fraternity takes care of these expenses as far as possible, but nowadays it is very difficult to be able to cover all the necessities. Some fraternities of Europe and America have responded by paying the bill of a brother from Africa, or from America itself… Thank you. I am asking fraternities for your readiness to help in their journey brothers from Haiti, Burkina Faso, Central African Republic, Chad, Congo, Cameroon, Rwanda, Madagascar, Pakistan, India and Bangla Desh, who still do not have their plane ticket. It is an important effort that will make possible the presence and participation of these brothers in the Philippines.

Thanks to the Filipino Brothers for all the work in Cebu to make the assembly possible. Let us trust in the goodwill of all the brothers in the world to demonstrate that the Fraternity is more than a group of priests, a form of spirituality: It is sharing what we have. Thank you.

Our next brother responsible, who we will elect in Cebu, and his new team will help us to continue making fraternity possible out of our realities and dreams.


In these weeks of preparation for Christmas we will arrange the best place of our life for He who comes to stay. The Angels announced the Good News to the shepherds, and they announce many joys to us. There are angels who call to us at the door, or on the phone, or on the street, and who tell us, sometimes without knowing it, that God is with us. There are faces that make us see Jesus in the hospital, in prison, in reception centres for refugees. Angels in the persons of our sick or very old siblings, who have given everything for the Church, for the fraternity, for the poor. Faces of anonymous people who do good without expecting anything in return. The Angels of the simple people of our parishes who help us in pastoral action, or with their presence in the celebrations, or offer us the best they have of their closeness and friendship. They are angels without wings, but with a voice that no one can silence.

With hope this Advent for a better world, a Church free from the sorrows of the past, a fraternity of brothers working in the tasks of the Kingdom, a world renewed by efforts for peace, for human rights, against all inequalities, my desire is for a Christmas full of God, of Jesus brother and friend. A big embrace.

Aurelio SANZ BAEZA, brother responsible

Perín, Cartagena, Murcia, Spain, 1 December 2018,
Feast of Blessed Charles de FOUCAULD

(Thanks so much, Liam, for translation to English)

PDF: Advent Letter 2018, brother responsible, eng

Letter of Aurelio to the american brothers, 2 March 2018

Dear brothers,

has been a great pleasure to take part in the II Panamerican Assembly of the fraternity in Santo Domingo and to share the life and worries, the hopes and realities of the present brothers and of the absent ones. Together with Mark, as international team, I have felt the spirit of the universality in the life of the fraternity of Charles de FOUCAULD, both in the distances of lives and in the answers to the challenges of our time.

Thank you for everything what one has worked, before and during the assembly. I value the effort of all: the responsibles of every country preparing the answers to the questionnaires, Fernando’s work with the coordination, the Dominican brothers with the preparation of the assembly and to do that we were like in house … Our brother Francisco, archbishop of Santo Domingo, with his hospitality and nearness … Our brother bishop Rafael, with his testimony of loyalty to the fraternity and to the people … Are great the motives for being grateful.

From every person, the brothers, the community of Carmelite sisters and the workers of the house where we were, the work of Raisa, the people that we knew in the parishes and communities, a gift is received. He is the human being who gives us the better thing of yes same. When we go for the life of pilgrims, when we go out of ours “I” to meet “other one”, and our attitude is not to be to the defensive, but of receiving and being received, without judging, without prejudices, one makes possible the fraternity, and one believes this contemplative moment of between the persons, that it is deeper still when some time ago that we have not met. Because of it, the great happiness of finding again brothers and to be fused in the fraternal embrace.

Thanks to Carlos Roberto and Eleuterio for his two so interesting presentations and interpeelers. They have helped us to have a more just opinion, to penetrate into the calls from the Bible and the Laudato si of the pope Francis towards the reality of the world of the migration and of the ecology, into the care of the common house. This has supposed a capture of conscience on the challenges that they present not only in America but in the whole world. Our brother Charkess had this conscience from his trip to Morocco, as scientist, and learned of the simple people how to value what is had, how to value abroad; why his faith, his culture, his color or thought interrogates us, since it is different from us. The message of universal fraternity of Charles de FOUCAULD stays once again in the present, in our pastoral and personal “budgets”.

The times of prayer, in the adoration, in the celebration of the eucharist, I think that they have helped us not to think only, but to be employed at team and to do between all a good work that helps all the brothers of America.

We miss to the brothers of Mexico, but we value his contributions for the questionnaire. We feel near Douglas, in Venezuela, that it is trying to announce the fraternity in his country, contacting priests motivated by Nazareth and the missionary style of the brother Charles .¡Bravo, Douglas! And very much good spirit to the fraternity of Argentina in the preparation of the Month of Nazareth in the next July.

Today I write with the pain and the worry for the terrorist attacks in Burkina Faso. The whole day I am dependent on news. There hurts me much that stuffs itself to any person, and even more to a country that I love so much. I ask for prayers.

And I ask God and his Mother to bless us, that illuminates with his Spirit our lives, our communities, our families. That we can look at Jesus in the adoration with friend’s full confidence, that we listen to the Lord in the desert, with his long silences and waits – them of Him, to the search of us-, that we put our heart in the review of life, as an opened, royal book, not of science fiction or of history, which there are most left those who motivate us in the way of the Gospel.

A great transoceanic hug.

Aurelio SANZ BAEZA, brother responsible

Perín, Cartagena, Spain, 2 March 2018

PDF: Letter of Aurelio to the american brothers, 2 March 2018, eng

Letter from Santo Domingo, February 2018


Dear Brothers,

in a climate of prayer, joy and shared fraternity, national responsibles and delegates from Argentina, Chile, Brazil, Haiti, Dominican Republic, United States and Quebec-Acadie have gathered. We thank God and all who have collaborated through their prayers, work and financial contributions so that this meeting would be possible, especially our brothers from the Dominican Republic and also those priests and deacons who covered for us in our parishes.

We reviewed the path of our fraternities the past two years and verified that many of the proposals elaborated in the last assembly were put into practice. We would like to spotlight the celebrations of the centenary of Brother Charles’ second birth realized in all our countries through symposiums, Eucharists, retreats, publications, posters etc. This permitted us to introduce his person and spirituality to many brother priests, deacons, lay persons, religious and seminarians.

During our assembly we focused our attention on two relevant facts in our countries: migration and the mistreatment of our Mother Earth. These are true signs of the times that we want to examine in the light of the Word of God and the social teaching of the Church, especially as given by Pope Francis, and as seen in the spirituality that we have received from Brother Charles de Foucauld. The goal of this communal discernment was to discover the will of God and to more deeply commit ourselves to a true ministry for migrants and a caring for our Common Home.

Listening attentively to the reports from each country we heard that in one way or another we are committed in these two areas, but that we need to do much more because we are dealing with people’s lives, with families, and with vulnerable communities. They are victims of a savage capitalism that destroys without mercy as it worships the god of money.

The two presentations of our brothers Eleuterio Ruiz and Carlos Roberto Dos Santos: “Strangers and Refugees, Reflections on a Challenge of Our time in the Light of the Scripture” and “Biblical and Pope Francis’ Reflections on the Environment” enlightened us.

It has been clear to us that the Lord asks us to “go in search of the most abandoned,” as Brother Charles did in his time, who are in this case migrants who arrive in our countries in situations of great vulnerability. The Word of God is specific: “You shall treat the alien who resides with you no differently than the natives born among you; have the same love for him as for yourself; for you too were once aliens in the land of Egypt. I, the Lord, am your God.” (Lev 19.34) And Pope Francis shows us a very concrete way to express this love: Welcome, protect, promote and integrate our migrant brothers and sisters.

We have also felt a strong call to care for our Common Home and to make ours the question Francis offers to humanity in his encyclical “Laudato Si”: “What kind of a world do we want to leave for those who will come after us, to children who are growing up?” (160).

We want to reflect more on this theme in our fraternities and with our presbyterates so as to have a prophetic stance; we also want to network with church and civil organizations to protect the environment and preserve the beauty and integrity of creation, which is God’s gift to all humanity. Charles’ non-consumer lifestyle encourages us to live in simplicity, in austerity and in harmony with nature.

We are happy and hopeful regarding the calling of the Synod for the bishops of the Pan-Amazonian Region. We will collaborate actively in its preparation and afterward put it into practice.

During our assembly we visited the communities of a local parish in Santo Domingo. This visit put us in contact with the holy people of God, who, from their poverty show us the urgency of being authentic with the obligations that God has shown us in this assembly, which were taken up in our Desert Day and in the Review of Life which we did in small groups.

We ask the Holy Spirit to make us more faithful each day to the charism of Brother Charles, so that we can share it with many members of the people of God and continue developing a “Church that is poor and for the poor.”

Your brothers of the II Pan American Assembly,

Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic, 24 February 2018

PDF: Letter from Santo Domingo, february 2018, eng

Lettera di Aurelio ai fratelli italiani, 10 dicembre 2017

Carissimi fratelli,

sono stato molto contento di aver condiviso con voi, fratelli della fraternità sacerdotale italiana, e i fratelli di Jesus Caritas di Sassovivo e Limiti, alcuni giorni di ritiro, di assemblea e di vita fraterna nel silenzio, nella preghiera e nel riposo… tutto concorre al bene del mio cuore pieno di gioia per l’accoglienza riservatami da parte di tutti.

Innanzitutto a Roma Andrea MANDONICO mi ha accolto come fratello e mi ha ospitato presso la casa delle Missioni Africane. Poi mi ha accompagnato alla casa di Giovanni, in Salci, con il quale sono andato a Loreto. Anche al rientro Andrea mi ha riaccompagnato all’aeroporto. A Loreto ho incontrato i fratelli italiani: che gioia grande ritornare ad incontrare gente così buona e aver potuto conoscerne altri ancora. I fratelli di Jesus Caritas mi hanno accolto nell’Abazia di Sassovivo come un fratello in più… A Sassovivo sono andato con Francesco e insieme abbiamo visitato nel cimitero di Spello la tomba di Carlo CARRETO. E’ stato un tempo contemplativo che ancora rivive nel mio cuore. Per me tutto è stato un grande dono che non merito.

Grazie a tutti voi per lo stile di vicinanza, stile mediterraneo, così simile al nostro spagnolo. Grazie per avermi trattato come fratello.

Ho sofferto per l’assenza di Gianantonio. Con lui ho avuto un ottimo scambio fraterno tutti i giorni attraverso gli strumenti mediatici a disposizione. Ancora mi comunico spesso con lui e accompagno ogni suo momento, il suo Nazaret.

Del ritiro mi porto la testimonianza del nostro fratello vescovo Giuseppe ANFOSSI e dei fratelli più anziani della fraternità che seguono le orme di fratel Carlo de FOUCAULD, come quelle di Gesù, nella vita quotidiana e nel loro instancabile lavoro per il Regno.

Voglio ringraziare Secondo per il suo costante impegno nella fraternità italiana come responsabile in tutti questi anni; grazie, Secondo, per essere così come sei, per la tua trasparenza e servizio generoso, per la tua pazienza e per essere fratello di coloro che pongono fiducia in te. Grazie anche a Gigi TOMA, per aver accettato il servizio alla fraternità come nuovo responsabile dell’Italia. Sono certo che non ti mancherà l’appoggio e l’aiuto di tutti nei prossimi sei anni. In particolare la sfida di organizzare il Mese di Nazaret, un tempo di grazia molto proficuo per i fratelli che vi parteciperanno. Altro impegno assunto è quello di intensificare le relazioni con i sacerdoti dell’Albania, se Dio vuole, sarà tra gli obiettivi in questo spazio di amore fraterno e lavoro gratuito e disinteressato. Avanti con tua dedizione: sai che hai il sostegno della fraternità internazionale.

Nei giorni trascorsi a Loreto ho costato l’importanza e l’attualità del messaggio e del cammino di fratel Carlo. Nel giorno di deserto mi sono sentito pellegrino insieme a voi. Avrei preferito un silenzio completo dalla notte anteriore, ma rispetto il ritmo della maggioranza: siamo preti diocesani e non monaci di clausura. Ma sarebbe bene organizzare un deserto di quasi 24 ore, in cui il silenzio e il non fare nulla ci aiutino a lasciarci incontrare dal Signore.

Mi è piaciuta moltissimo la testimonianza e il servizio dei fratelli diaconi, Michele e Sergio; non solo per i loro servizi nell’eucarestia, ma soprattutto per i loro contributi, la loro vita come padri di famiglia e lavoratori nella vita. Grazie per il vostro grande contributo per il Regno a partire dalla vostra vocazione di cristiani consacrati nella vita matrimoniale e nella Chiesa. La fraternità è sempre aperta a coloro che incontrano nel fratel Carlo un referente per la propria vita, non solo spiritualmente, ma anche nel lavoro e nella propria famiglia. Questo ci arricchisce tutti e ci libera dal clericalismo che a volte ci può convertire in una ‘casta’ speciale tra gli uomini e le donne delle nostre parrocchie e comunità.

Il mio incontro a Limiti e Sassovivo con i fratelli di Jesus Caritas, con una accoglienza fraterna e familiare, mi ha permesso di conoscere questa congregazione dal di dentro. Fino a questo momento conoscevo soltanto Piero e Giovanni Marco; ora ho avuto l’opportunità di passare un pò di tempo con Giancarlo, Leonardo, Wilfried, Paolo Maria e Jhonatan. Mi hanno accolto come uno di famiglia e ho avuto la possibilità di pregare con loro, celebrare nella parrocchia di Limiti l’eucaristia domenicale con Piero. Avevo un grandissimo desiderio di tornare ad incontrarlo. E’ stata una grande gioia per lui e specialmente per me. Ho potuto dedicare molto tempo alla preghiera nell’Abbadia di Sassovivo e contemplare la bellezza della montagna che la circonda. Come con i fratelli della fraternità italiana così anche con questi fratelli di Jesus Caritas ho assaporato Nazaret e lo stile missionario e di servizio alla Chiesa sulle tracce di Carlo de FOUCAULD. Grazie a tutti di cuore. Grazie perchè so che in tanta gente c’è tanto amore che mi fa sentire figlio di Dio e fratello di tutti.

Un grande abraccio.

Aurelio SANZ BAEZA, fratello responsabile

Perín, Cartagena, Spagna, 10 diciembre 2017,
seconda domenica d’Avvento e festa della Madonna di Loreto

(E grazie, caro Mario MORICONI, per la traduzione italiana)

PDF: Lettera di Aurelio ai fratelli italiani, 10 dicembre 2017

Letter for Advent 2017, brother responsible

Dear brothers,

Advent over the next four Sundays draws us closer to little, fragile Jesus. This Jesus who is born in the hope of many people for a better, more humane world, where men and women can enjoy their rights. A world in need of dialogue, and equality. Pope Francis in his messages encourages us to leave oppressive structures, both inside and outside of the Church, and to open ourselves to the message of Jesus become man in different cultural and social ways.

Brother Charles, whose feast we celebrate on 1st December, 101 years after his death, is one of our references to open us from Nazareth to the world, faced with a long list of injustices which are kept up from the interests of the powerful. The mafias behind drug and human trafficking, the nuclear threat, political fundamentalism, the causes of climate change, terrorism… and so many Christmas counter-decorations that embarrass us, but are still present in everyday life. When information and consciences are manipulated, when one attempts to gain power, money and deceive people at the cost of human lives… I think we all know to say no to all that, but our mission includes helping others to be consistent with faith and the Gospel. May our prayer, pastoral activity and mission, born of love for the Lord and our neighbour, as Charles de FOUCAULD inspires us, be aligned to work for the Kingdom this Advent, where the poor teach us to share what is small and insignificant.

We have experienced with sadness the loss of Felix RAJAONARIVELO, our brother from Madagascar, Howie CALKINS, from the United States, -whom we have mentioned on the pages of and Dominic, from Myanmar. Other brothers have also died. They have all taught us by their faithfulness to the Gospel and to the fraternity that to be a follower of Jesus is worthwhile.

With the death of Felix, a member of the international team and African responsible, the team designated Honoré SAWADOGO, from Burkina Faso, to assume his place and responsibility. We will welcome him at our next meeting as a team in Bangalore, India, in January 2018, preparing the General Assembly of January 2019. Honoré, Jean-François, Mark, Emmanuel, Mauricio and I will work with enthusiasm to make possible an assembly where all the brothers throughout the world will be represented, with their concerns, the realities of their fraternities, calls to be faithful to our choice for the path of Jesus as missionaries and diocesan priests, following the charism of brother Charles. I am still awaiting from some countries their response to the questionnaire before the Assembly. The questionnaire is permanently to be seen on our internet page. Thank you. This will make our work easier in Bangalore.

In April I lived with great joy our meeting of responsibles and delegates of the Spiritual Family of Charles de FOUCAULD in Aachen, Germany. We shared the reality of being brothers and sisters marked by a Church style in communion with Pope Francis, with the difficulties of being imperfect human beings, but open to personal and communal change faced with the challenges of our societies, with the problems of people, with the joy of knowing that we are not alone in this mission. We feel and are family, and our priestly fraternity shares in many places of the world the life and closeness of the other fraternities in the charism of brother Charles.

The fraternity of Argentina held in June its annual retreat. I had the joy of taking part in it and sharing with many brothers on their pastoral life, the depth of their lives and their commitment to their people and to their communities. I only have words of gratitude for all that the Lord is doing through these brothers and the closeness and brotherliness with which they treated me. José María BALIÑA, auxiliary bishop of Buenos Aires, helped us share deeply by means of the Word of God on our lives and mission. (See the Letter of Aurelio to the fraternity of Argentina, on our website, archives of August 2017)

The fraternities of the United States also held their assembly in July in Camarillo, California. Our brother, Fernando TAPIA, Pan-American responsible, facilitated the meeting. Jerry RAGAN, our dear “Hap”, was reelected as national responsible. (Letter from Camarillo, in August 2017, on our website). One notes with great joy the closeness of the different fraternities of all America, especially in the preparation that is being done for the II Pan-American Assembly, in February 2018, in the Dominican Republic, with the coordination of Fernando and the Caribbean brothers, Mártires and Abraham. The new fraternity of Haiti will be present. Welcome, Jonas and Haitian brothers.

Our Mexican brothers held their first ever Month of Nazareth in July and August, also guided by Fernando, close to Puebla. The experience has been a seed of true fraternity in this country where the fraternity is growing and is being enriched by brothers who are very socially and pastorally committed to the people. The work of Nacho, previous responsible, his tireless dedication to the fraternity, and now the work of José RENTERÍA is appreciated. Thank you for being as you are. One can read an extensive pdf with a report of the Month of Nazareth also on our web page.

In July we held our European Assembly of the fraternity in Rudy, Poland. In the Letter from Rudy you have a broad resumé of the contributions of the fraternities of Europe, the result of our work coordinated by John McEVOY, from Ireland, our European responsible, and the Polish brothers especially Andrzej ANDERWALD and Rafał who went to great lengths to host us, warmly welcome us and offered us in parishes at the weekend their hospitality and contact with the people. We elected Kuno KOHN, from Germany, as new European responsible, until the next Assembly in England in 2020. Many calls come to us faced with a European Church that is ageing, in a society that is daily more godless and secular, with a changing demography reliant upon a great number of immigrants and refugees. These should not remain outside our mission.

Our brother Jean-Michel BORTHEIRIE led the retreat of the fraternity of Chad, in Bakara, in the month of August, and with great joy he shared this African experience of fraternity with me. He is a good connoisseur of the African scene very well from his missionary work on the continent. The fraternity of Chad is growing and Corentin AGDE is striving to coordinate the meetings as the responsible with great difficulties because of the distances as happens in many countries where brothers must to travel many hours to meet. Thanks, because this effort makes the fraternity possible.

The Spanish fraternity had our summer retreat the last week of August, in Galapagar, Madrid, with the contributions of our brother Mateo CLARES along the lines of the spirituality and mission of Charles de FOUCAULD. The Adoration, the Review of Life, the Desert and an evening assembly, coordinated by our responsible, Leonardo, tempered our hearts and helped us to go deeply into our lives.

The Chilean brothers have held their retreat and assembly these last few days, led by Matías VALENZUELA, a Sacred Hearts missionary, specialist in themes related to Charles de FOUCAULD. What a joy to see our Mariano PUGA again in this family photo! He and other “historic” brothers whose years and experience give us a living testimony of following Jesus as pastors and missionaries, reflecting by their lives that God loves them and that they do everything for Him.

This last week in Pakistan the Asian Week of Spirituality, centred on the message of Charles de FOUCAULD, took place with the participation of brothers of nearly all the Asian fraternities and with the coordination of Arthur CHARLES, Asian responsible and Emmanuel ASI of our international team. I hope soon to be able to give a resumé of information from them on our fraternity website.

Today I travel to Italy to take part in the retreat and assembly of the Italian brothers in Loreto. Secondo MARTIN is completing his term as responsible and a new brother must be chosen. We will have ever present in our hearts Giuseppe COLAVERO, a great warrior for the fraternity and for the most abandoned. Also, Giovanni, the old brother loved by all.

Let us keep in prayer our sick brothers. I think especially of Aquileo, from Mexico, who is due to be operated on following an accident; of Gianantonio, from Italy; of some of the Spanish brothers who are closest, with their health problems. They are the presence of Jesus, who was always alongside the suffering. Our prayer is also with the brothers in countries of political instability and insecurity, terrorism, organised crime, etc. With them and on behalf of their people may we pray that Jesus be born in those humans who do not have the means we have for living. This is one of the intentions we can have as a fraternity this Advent.

Forgive this long Letter for Advent, that looks like a family album and news-sheet. I do it with affection that we may get to know the faces of our brothers across the world, their joys, their concerns.

A good Advent to all with the hope that the work here or there, on the missions, in neighbourhoods, hospitals, prisons, parishes, manual labour, those excluded by reason of their condition, may be all for the glory of God and to build a world of brothers.

A big embrace.

Aurelio SANZ BAEZA, brother responsible

Perín, Cartagena, Murcia, Spain, 19 November 2017,
World Day of the Poor, promoted by our Pope Francis.

(Thanks so much, dear Liam, for the English translation)

PDF: Letter for Advent 2017, brother responsible, eng

Letter from Jean François and Aurelio, Vernon, March 2017, in Dutch

Lieve Broeders,

we zijn deze week samengekomen om te werken voor de Priesterfraterniteit die ons allen verbindt.

We hebben de personen opgeroepen die in het hart staan van onze bekommernissen en die ons motiveren voor de dienst die we samen aannemen: namelijk elkeen van jullie.

In dit kleine Nazareth Vernon, in het huis van onze broeder François MARIN, die ons ontvangt als een vader, brengen wij God dank voor de broeders die jullie voor ons zijn.

Dank, François voor de gastvrijheid die je broederlijk aanbiedt aan de pelgrims die wij zijn.

Dit werk hebben we toegespitst op het herlezen van het leven van onze fraterniteiten.

Wij hebben gedialogeerd en onze meningen en bekommernissen gedeeld om te pogen een antwoord te brengen omtrent de vragen die het leven van onze fraterniteit aanbelangen in de onmiddellijke toekomst:

– de Europese bijeenkomst van de fraterniteiten in Polen deze zomer (Rudy)
– de Wereldbijeenkomst in Indië januari 2019 (Bangalore)
– het bilan van onze activiteiten in 2016 voor de Congregatie van de Clerus in het Vaticaan
– het lanceren van de Fraterniteit in Haïti
– het project om de verantwoordelijken van de verschillende takken van de spirituele Foucauldfamilie te ontmoeten in Aachen, april 2017
– de echo’s van het Jubileumjaar t.g.v. de Honderdste verjaardag van de zalige Charles de FOUCAULD die ons bereiken uit verscheidene landen
– de zorgen omtrent de gezondheid van onze broeder uit Madagaskar Felix
– onze vreugde het herstel te zien bij het verlaten van het ziekenhuis van Suso (Fraterniteit van Madrid, Spanje) na zijn chirurgische ingreep

Maandag 6 maart hebben we een uitwisseling gehad met de verantwoordelijken van de regio Île de France en Normandië (Yves de MALLMANN, Joseph JOURJON, Louis YON en Xavier CHAVANE).

Het was goed elkaar te ontmoeten om de werkelijkheid van het leven en de zorgen van onze fraterniteiten centraal te plaatsen.

Wij erkennen dat wij de ‘doortocht’ in onze Europese Fraterniteiten die steeds maar verouderen, beleven als een echte ‘Nazareth’-tijd.

Het weze een krachtige oproep om deze ‘passage’ hoopvol door te maken om in liefde de tijd van verouderen te beleven in de spiritualiteit van Nazareth. En dit terwijl wij met realisme vaststellen dat er nog weinig jongeren tot onze fraterniteiten toetreden.

Deze tijd dienen wij in eenvoud te beleven en in trouw, om ten einde toe te getuigen van het geloof dat ons bezielt. En dit in een Europa dat de neiging heeft zich terug te plooien op zichzelf, dat weigert vreemdelingen en vluchtelingen te onthalen en dat bang is. Deze angsten vertalen zich in het stijgen van populistische en reactionaire bewegingen.

Vóór alles, in de lijn van paus Franciscus, zijn wij geroepen om door ons leven de universele broederschap te manifesteren die broeder Charles ons nalaat en het missionair charisma van onze priesterfraterniteit Jesus Caritas.

Wij geloven dat de dialoog met de moslims in Europa mogelijk is! Wij beleven die ook in verschillende christelijke gemeenschappen door concrete acties waarbij we elkaar ontmoeten en nabij zijn. De vooroordelen en de bekoringen om in de andere een bedreiging te zien, moeten een voor een vallen. Bijvoorbeeld, in Frankrijk, in sommige volksbuurten, zijn een derde van de inwoners moslim. Wij dienen te leren om samen te leven en om te dialogeren met de werkelijkheid zoals ze zich presenteert.

Dinsdag 7 maart hebben wij in het logement van Jean-François bezoek gekregen van Jacques Gaillot, bisschop van Partenia, lid van onze fraterniteit. Hij is van Parijs gekomen om te participeren aan ons werk. De tijd die we met hem mochten doorbrengen vanaf zijn komst in het station te Vernon tot aan zijn vertrek is een echt geschenk geweest. In de uitwisselingen hebben we kunnen profiteren van zijn wijsheid om te verdiepen hoe we priester kunnen zijn in deze moeilijke tijd, hoe we kunnen blijven openstaan voor hoopvolle dingen en hoe we ons bereid kunnen maken ons te bevrijden van onze zekerheden en van ons Westers comfort… Dank je wel, Jacques dat je er was om jouw levensgetuigenis en je gegeven zijn aan Christus met ons te delen.

Woensdag 8 maart in de namiddag zijn we naar Michel Pinchon getrokken in het pastorij van Gouville. We troffen hem sterk aan, in goede gezondheid. Wij hebben kunnen vaststellen dat zijn huis open blijft voor heel veel bezoeken van mensen uit zijn dorp en verder en dat hij op een edelmoedige wijze zijn ervaringen en wijsheid deelt. We hebben ’s avonds in Dammier het avondmaal genoten met Jan-Louis Rattier, lid van de fraterniteit met Jean-François en de hebben deelgenomen aan een bijeenkomst met mensen uit zijn parochie om na te denken over het Woord van God. Zo konden we delen in zijn dagelijkse pastorale ervaringen. Het is altijd een genade te mogen delen in de Nazareth-ervaring in een christelijke gemeenschap met een broeder van de Fraterniteit, om het leven te beluisteren van de christenen en hun gemeenschap met Christus.

We hebben ook het werk gewaardeerd van Fernando TAPIA, van Jean-Michel BORTHEIRIE en van Manuel POZO in Almera, Spanje, om een document te maken over de ‘Nazarethmaand’. Dit document zal bestudeerd worden en goedgekeurd in de Bijeenkomst van Bangalore. Dank aan deze broeders die op die wijze beantwoord hebben aan de vraag van de Internationale Equipe.

Wij herinneren er meteen nog eens aan dat wij rekenen op de bijdrage van alle regionen om het budget te spijzen voor de internationale Equipe en dit vooral met het oog op de Wereldbijeenkomst in Bangalore, januari 2019. Voor wie het aangaat, wil de Internationale Equipe deze ontmoeting voorzien tegen een betaalbare prijs.

Heel veel dank voor de fraterniteiten die hun bijdrage met edelmoedigheid reeds hebben in orde gebracht.

Onze webstek staat open voor alle fraterniteiten. Wij hopen dat jullie artikelen sturen, nieuws en het aankondigen van de toekomstige initiatieven om ze in de ‘agenda’ aan te plaatsen. Het is een manier om elkaar wederzijds nabij te zijn. Wij vinden het belangrijk dat onze fraterniteiten plaatsen zijn waar wij vernemen hoe we missionair kunnen zijn binnen onze diocesane priestercorpsen.

Op deze plaatsen waar we parochies, hospitalen, gevangenissen, onthaal voor vreemdelingen (verjaagd uit hun landen door oorlog of armoede) en plaatsen van solidariteit met de meest bedreigden van onze samenleving terugvinden, bewaren wij de geest van het appel van Broeder Charles om de ‘laatsten’ te vervoegen. Want het is met hen dat wij de Christus ontmoeten. Er is geen open spiritueel leven mogelijk zonder een edelmoedig en barmhartig hart.

Paus Franciscus nodigt er ons dringend toe uit: « Laten naar buiten treden om aan allen het leven van Jezus Christus aan te bieden… Ik verkies een gehavende Kerk, gekneusd en vuil omdat ze de straat is opgegaan, eerder dan een Kerk die ziek is omdat ze in zichzelf zit opgesloten, gehecht aan het comfort van haar eigen zekerheden. … Meer dan de vrees ons te vergissen, hoop ik dat we bezield blijven door de vrees opgesloten te zitten in structuren die ons een valse bescherming geven, in normen die ons tot onverbiddelijke rechters maken, in gewoontes waarin we ons comfortabel voelen, terwijl er buiten een uitgehongerde menigte wacht en Jezus maar voor ons blijft herhalen: “Jullie moeten hun te eten geven” Mc 6,37).” (De Vreugde van het evangelie, nr. 49).

Vanuit Vernon wensen we jullie een heilzame vasten en een mooie weg naar Pasen toe met Jezus en met je broers en zussen waarmee je tocht bent.

Jean-François en Aurelio

Vernon, Normandië, Frankrijk, 10 maart 2017

PDF: Brief van Jean François en Aurelio, Vernon, maart 2017, neer

Letter of Jean François and Aurelio, Vernon, March 2017

Dear brothers,

We have worked this week on Fraternity affairs and especially, in relation to those who are at the heart of our concern and who motivate us, that is to say, each one of you. In this little Nazareth that is Vernon, at the home of our brother François MARIN, who has hosted us as if we were his sons, we remember you and thank God that you are our brothers. Many thanks, François, for providing a resting place for the pilgrim and receiving your brothers.

We centred our work on reviewing pending Fraternity issues in a good climate of dialogue, sharing ideas, viewpoints and the concern to resolve outstanding matters and for the immediate future operation of the Fraternity: the questionnaires for the European Assembly this Summer in Poland, and for the World meeting in India in January 2019, the finances of the International Fraternity, the furnishing of a 2016 Fraternity report to be sent to the Congregation for the Clergy in the Vatican, the new fraternity in Haiti, preparations for the meeting of responsibles and delegates of the Charles de FOUCAULD Family in April in Aachen, echoes of the Centenary of brother Charles, which arrive from different countries, our concerns for the health of Félix, from Madagascar, and the recovery of Suso, from Spain, having undergone surgery, etc.

On Monday, 6th March we shared with the responsibles for the Regions of Île de France and Normandy (Yves de MALLMANN, Joseph JOURJON, Louis YON and Xavier CHAVANE) in an extended time of dialogue and encounter. It was wonderful to be able to meet each other in fraternity, in order to share in common the realities of our fraternities and our concerns. We believe that in Europe we are living through a time of transition which is a real Nazareth with the ageing of our Fraternities. There is a very serious call to live this moment with optimism and with of love for this Nazareth spirituality while we are ever older with few young members joining us. Living simply and at the same time the commitment of a universal brotherhood in an Europe that is very focused on itself, and inward looking, rejecting the stranger, the refugee, full of fears that give rise to an increase of populist politics and reactionary trends. Faced with all this, and in line with Pope Francis, we feel called to give witness to Brother Charles’ message of universal brotherhood and the missionary character of our charism as the Jesus Caritas Fraternity of Priests. Dialogue with Muslims in Europe we believe to be possible, and many expressions of rapprochement are to be found in a great many Christian communities. Prejudices must come down and the temptation to regard others as a threat. For example, in France, a third of working class areas are Muslim. We must learn how to enter into dialogue with this reality.

On Tuesday 7th we had a visit from Jacques GAILLOT, Titular Bishop of Partenia, a member of the Fraternity who came from Paris to share in our work in Jean François’ home. The time we spent together was a great gift from the moment we picked him up at the Vernon train-station until his departure. We could learn from the wisdom of the simple how to be more humanitarian, how to be priests in a difficult world, how to be open to hope and how to live without the securities and comforts of being Westerners. Thank you, Jacques, for coming to spend time with us and for all the testimonies throughout your life of a dedication to the cause of Jesus.

On Wednesday 8th we worked in the morning and in the afternoon, we approached Gouville, in order to be with Michel PINCHON, whom we found to be strong and sound. His home is open to numerous visits of the people of the locality or from further afield with whom he shares with generosity his experience and wisdom. We had supper with Jean Louis RATTIER and took part in the meeting of the Bible workshop of his parish in Damville, sharing on his pastoral activity and his day to day work. It is always rewarding to take part in each brother’s Nazareth, both exterior and interior. Nazareth is the lived experience of how we situate ourselves fraternally before all that surrounds us, in an ever-closer union with Jesus.

We highly valued the work of Fernando TAPIA, Jean Michel BORTHEIRIE and Manuel POZO in Almería, Spain, drawing up a basic outline on the Month of Nazareth. This document will be studied for approval at the Bangalore Assembly. Thanks to these brothers for having responded to this request from us in the International Team.

Let us remember that we must make an effort in all regions to support the International fund, especially as the next World Assembly in Bangalore in 2019 has a budget to meet and we need to cover expenses. As an International Team we try to save resources as much as possible. Our thanks to those fraternities who have already generously paid their share.

Our web-site is open to the contributions of all fraternities. We await your articles, news and notices of forthcoming to publish them in our Diary. This is a means of communication that brings us closely together.

Our time of reflection has also taken into account the call to live, as a Fraternity, our ministry as missionaries within the diocesan presbyterate, wherever we are based, be it a parish, a hospital, a prison, or with organisations that help refugees, or people displaced by war or poverty, or in places that care for the needy of our societies, with the call to go to the last, like Charles de FOUCAULD, because it is there that we meet Christ. As Pope Francis reminds us, there is no spiritual life without an open, generous and merciful heart.

Let us go forth, then, let us go forth to offer everyone the life of Jesus Christ…I prefer a Church which is bruised, hurting and dirty because it has been out on the streets, rather than a Church which is unhealthy from being confined and from clinging to its own security… More than by fear of going astray, my hope is that we will be moved by the fear of remaining shut up within structures which give us a false sense of security, within rules which make us harsh judges, within habits which make us feel safe, while at our door people are starving and Jesus tirelessly repeats to us: Give them something to eat yourselves” (Mk 6:37). (Evangelli Gaudium, 49)

From Vernon, we wish you a holy Lent and a path to Easter with Jesus and the brothers and sisters as companions on the road.

A big embrace.

Jean François and Aurelio

Vernon, Normandy, France, 10 March, 2017

(Thanks so much, Liam, for translate to English)

PDF: Letter of Jean François and Aurelio, Vernon, March 2017, eng.

Advent Letter 2016, brother responsible

Dear brothers,

adviento_2016_001it is no time to make speeches or even giving great ideas: Advent speech for itself. Jesus is near, the announced by the prophets and the expected by a desperate people. Advent is the word given by the prophets to the people, the voice of John the Baptist, the message of the life of men and women that, in many parts of the world, gave or are giving their life for Jesus. Today also is the voice of those who work for a world in balance and harmony.

We always hear the voice of the bearer of good news, of the changes that make this world the place sacred to all: the Earth, with all human beings, with their rights and freedoms. The voice that convey us the poor awaiting a solution to their problems, since the exiles by war – immigrants to the strength-, to the men and women adviento_2016_002who are in the refugee camps, hospitals, nursing homes, houses host… the people that found with problems psychic, the people that goes to us in seeks of consolation: listen your voice.

Listen to the voice from the Word, the commitment of God to the world. Them texts of each one of them Sundays of advent are a call to deepen in the wish of the Lord, that that ignites light candles in our heart.

adviento_2016_003Listen to the brothers and sisters of the family of Charles de FOUCAULD in the world these days celebrating the centenary. A joy, other good news for the Church and for those who, without considering Church, coexist with us, they share our table, our street or our friendship: brother Charles is master of friendship and neighborliness -poor missionary among the poor-. The Centenary of its Easter on December 1 it’s time to give thanks to the Lord by this search and restless man of his Will. The seed that fell on land and germinated and gave fruit, and a fruit that remains and gives more seeds, is pure life. Each one of us, as fraternity priestly, have that sow not slogans religious, but our life of brothers among adviento_2016_004brothers, among the people to whom we serve or are called to be with them. The universality of his testimony challenges us to leave our prefabricated schema and return to Nazareth: always return to the Gospel as a way of life, thought and love. The death of Charles de FOUCAULD was the manifestation of their love to Jesus until the end, without want it, without making plans on your end; was simply a die for God and in the way of a search that never stopped until that time, sent to the last, as atypical missionary.

adviento_2016_005For the family Charles de FOUCAULD celebrate the centenary during this 2016 is to remind the triumph of Jesus over death and share the joy of his resurrection. We feel immersed in his Easter, within this Advent where we hear also your voice, in any language and diversity of languages -that of prayer, of hope, of peace, of humility…- It reminds us that we are small. Their friendship and identification with Jesus is a call to strengthen in us that identity (adoration, desert, listen to and share in the review of life, working for and with them more poor, his life in Nazareth, be brother…)

adviento_2016_006After the Jubilee Year of Mercy, pope Franciscus encourages us to follow building a strong world against the evil that do harm to the heart of the human being in his Apostolic Letter Misericordia et misera, spreading peace, recalling his title for Jesus we are forgiven of our “adultery”, and infidelity to be brother of all, sowers of peace and joy, transmitters of forgiveness and God’s love. That we were wrong and that we are sinners – not much more adviento_2016_007or much less than the adulterous woman in John 8, 1-11-, obviously, if we listen to our hearts and we do a good examination of conscience. But it is not sin, infidelity or “adultery” what we need to debug to be freed from guilt: it is more important not to throw stones, not to judge, and devote all the energy to build the Kingdom and, as a fraternity and group of brothers, put our efforts in the light of the Gospel and take advantage of the synergy of trust them ones in them others to do something good, that help to them others.

adviento_2016_008Recalling our commitment as a team international fraternity, as we wrote in the Letter of Kansas City, I remember all the importance of making the QUESTIONNAIRE of Bangalore, sent to all responsible and permanently exposed in our website Is the task of each fraternity prepare the World Assembly in January 2019, with contributions from life, to have a good basis of work, realistic, without theories, which speak of our identity, of our mission as a diocesan priests, to whom the testimony of the life of Charles de FOUCAULD has given a sense and a light as a gift of God, as a demonstration of love of the generous and sensitive heart of Jesus that beats in every Eucharist which we celebrate, that beats at the heart of the families, of the sicks, of the elderly, of the poor, the oppressed. We want to hear the heartbeat of every brother, each fraternity in Bangalore.

I would like to invite, again, to the collaboration with our website It is the means of communication of all fraternities. Send me your news, articles and joys… It is also important to communicate events to the AGENDA (retreats, meetings, Nazareth Month, interreligious or family experiences…) Thank you.

In this Advent 2016, ending the Jubilee Year of Mercy and the Centenary of the Easter of brother Charles, Jesus bless us and fill us with the heart of joy, peace and hope.

adviento_2016_009So I wish you with a big fraternal and trusted hug.

Aurelio SANZ BAEZA, brother responsible

Perín, Cartagena, Murcia, Spain, 27 November 2016,
first Sunday of Advent

PDF: advent-letter-2016-brother-responsible-eng


Dear brothers of Asia,

after our meeting in July in Cebu, with the estimable hospitality of the brothers in the Philippines, and the power of the simplicity of a life of fraternity that is more important than the organization, the methodology or results – human coexistence- , I am writing to assure you my support at all, myself to your service and the resonance that is the Assembly of Asia 2016 in whole world fraternity.

asia_2016_01Thanks for being there, thanks to the brothers of Philippines , to Arthur CHARLES, our responsable continental responsible of Asia, to Eric LOZADA, regional responsible of the Filipino fraternity, and the people who made it possible for the Assembly in the small details host, Airport Shuttle, etc. Thanks to José PALMA, Archbishop of Cebu, brother of the fraternity, the Bishop Angel LAGDAMEO, and to Gaudencio ROSALES, Cardinal emeritus of Manila, brother of the fraternity and one of the founders in the Philippines by living and sharing those days intense of work, prayer, communication and of party. We have great tenors in the fraternity… Also congratulations to numerous groups of Pakistan, and Korea.

Thank you for the presence and participation of the little sisters and little brothers of Jesus and the sisters of the secular fraternity. We live an atmosphere of family.

Thank you for making an effort to understand me with my English so small and imperfect. Thanks by talk the message universal of the fraternity, that is hosting us ones to others as if us knew of all the life, experience that is repeated in my heart with each fraternity of the world.

asia_2016_02I think that we have lived a Nazareth warm and wet climate, but rich in experience of fraternity sharing a work of reflection and manual, no matter the origin of each one or its status ecclesial: be brothers is be equal between us. Jesus thus let it us very clear in his words and his life. Charles of FOUCAULD had that intuition and experience throughout his life and their searches. it may seem like an obsession in him through his writings and letters, identifying with people and their problems, looking for the place where no one wanted to be, with the continuous challenge – powered by his faith and his friendship with Jesus- go below, dreaming of realizing Jesus among the latters. But it is a call to our lives, to our realities, as Church and as priests at the service of the people, trying to our role as “officials” not to catch the vocation of servers and proclaimers of the Good New.

asia_2016_03The conclusions of the Assembly, expressed in the letter of Asia (Cfr Letter from Cebu, in us encourage to continue working each one in our fraternities and countries. Live with the style of Nazareth together with other cultures, religions or people with a thought different from our own, whether or not believers, showing who Jesus is our life. This helps us fidelity to several things; the fraternity, in our meetings, with the Revision of life, prepared properly; to the worship daily, as find personal with Jesus, although only is to feel its presence; to the day of desert monthly, with an atmosphere of silence from the moment in that it started, for let us search and find by the Lord; the deepening of the word with a prayerful and contemplative reading, as well as texts of the spirituality of the brother Charles; to delivery to the most disadvantaged in our Ministry and our ordinary life; to live the lifestyle of Nazareth as diocesan priests, without making much noise, sharing their joys and sorrows with the people, being always by his side. Brother Charles was a restless seeker believer that helps us to live the Gospel of Jesus with a spirituality of Nazareth which is not only a spirituality, but a space and time of our lives which makes us happy by sharing our interior in fraternity.

asia_2016_04We recall the commitments as fraternities in Asia for the next years:

  • Week of Spirituality in Pakistan in November 2017
  • Month of Nazareth in the Philippines in July 2018
  • Asian Assembly in Korea in October 2019 and
  • World Assembly in Bangalore, India in January 2019.

Pray now to the Lord by all this and by each one of them brothers in the World.

asia_2016_05A big hug of rour brother

Aurelio SANZ BAEZA, brother responsible

Perín, Cartagena, Murcia, Spain, 4 September 2016
(Canonization of Mother Teresa of Calcutta)

PDF: letter-from-aurelio-to-the-asian-brothers-4-september-2016