What matters does the General Chapter discuss after the elections?
The first is an examination of the General House’s accounts; three members of the Chapter who are not part of the General Council are nominated by the President of the Chapter to conduct this examination.
There are many matters discussed by the Chapter; here are a few examples:
- The moral and financial situation of the Society based on the report of the outgoing Superior General;
- Any changes or clarifications to be made to the Statutes, as well as the authentic interpretation of these Statutes;
- Important matters for the common good of the Society;
- Determining the rules to be followed in the Society with regards to certain controversial matters, new social conditions, and problems related to the apostolate, the formation of the clergy, etc.
For this enormous task, the Chapter’s work is accomplished by commissions that are composed based on the different themes and the questions (or vota) formulated by the members.
The new Superior General confirms the commissions, determines their objectives, and chooses their members, their president and their secretary.
The commissions draw up reports and resolutions that are then submitted for deliberation by the Chapter in a plenary meeting.
The Chapter’s resolutions can be decisions, directives or desires. They are voted in by a simple majority of the members present.
If they involve a change in the Statutes, they have to have at least two thirds of the votes. All the resolutions taken together make up the Acts of the General Chapter that are then printed and published in Cor Unum, the official internal bulletin that is sent to all the members of the Society.
Decisions that require Rome’s approval or resolutions that should be examined by the Supreme Authority are then submitted to the Holy See by the General Council.