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Vade-mecum Published



Administrative Guide for Brother Provincials and their Councilors

18/11/2008: General House

The Vade-mecum is a collection of Institute procedures normally followed in administrative matters by Brother Provincials, Directors of Province apostolates and other Brothers in diverse responsibilities linked to the General Administration. The new edition of the Vade-mecum was officially approved at the General Council meeting of February 13, 2007 in the course of its plenary sessions.

The new text is the latest instance in a long history that began in the Founder’s time when directives and norms were given to guide the Institute communities in their relations with the Motherhouse. From Marcellin’s time a collection of written directives existed to guide the exercise of responsibilities car-ied out in the Institute. Brother François and his successors continued the Founder’s practice. Some of the early directives entered integrally into the Rules of Government, while others were disseminated in documents destined for internal use by superiors and their councils.

As the Institute gradually increased in numbers, its administrative structures were becoming more complex (especially after 1903). As a result, the succeeding General Administrations continued to provide regulations to Provincial Councils in order to guide and facilitate their duties. During Brother Basilio Rueda’s administration there appeared the first plans for gathering all the norms into one docu-ment. The intent came to fruition in l978 with the publication of the “Vade-mecum for Provincial Administration.”

During the administration of Brother Charles Howard, a new systemization of the directives came into existence. Assembled in its final and official text and approved by the General Council in December 1992, the compilation bore the title, “Vade-mecum: Administrative Guide for the Use of Brother Pro-vincials and Their Councils.” The edition remained in use up to June 2007.

The latest edition is the outcome of a study both systematic and detailed. The edition was produced by a committee created in May 2006 comprising: the Vicar General, the Econome General, the Procurator General, the Secretary General. As its starting point, the committee used the 1992 text. They updated its contents and unified its references. The new, revised edition preserves the identical structure as the l992 edition. At the end of the newest edition, seventeen appendices are found containing (a) examples of the common forms used for administrative communication and (b) directives to guide best practices in a variety of topics.

The need to update the Vade-mecum became necessary for the following reasons: (1) changes intro-duced in our Constitutions and Statutes at the 1993 and 2001 General Chapters, (2) the need to elimin-ate terms and phrases found in the preceding edition but now become obsolete, (3) the need to add some new procedures and (4) the wish to simplify other procedures.

The text can be consulted in the reserved area of the website.

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