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A provincial superior is a major superior[ further explanation needed ] of a religious institute acting under the institute's Superior General and exercising a general supervision over all the members of that institute in a territorial division of the order called a province , which is similar to but not to be confused with an ecclesiastical province made up of particular churches or dioceses under the supervision of a Metropolitan Bishop. The division of a religious institute into provinces is generally along geographical lines and may consist of one or more countries, or of only a part of a country There may be, however, one or more houses of one province situated within the physical territory of another since the jurisdiction over the individual religious is personal, rather than territorial. The title of the office is often abbreviated to Provincial.
Among the friars and Third Order Religious Sisters of the Augustinian, Carmelite and Dominican orders, the title " Prior Provincial" or Prioress Provincial is generally used. The Friars Minor, in contrast, use the title "Minister Provincial", in line with their emphasis on living as brothers to one another.
The old orders had no provincial superiors; even when the monasteries were united to form congregations, the arch-abbot of each congregation was in the position of a superior general whose powers were limited to particular cases, almost like the powers of a metropolitan archbishop over the dioceses of his suffragans. Provincial superiors are found in the institutes of more recent formation, which began with the mendicant orders. The Holy See hesitated for a long time before allowing the division of congregations with simple vows, especially congregations of women, into different provinces as a regular institution, and some congregations have no such division.
The Provincial Superior is ordinarily elected by the Provincial Chapter, subject to confirmation by the Superior General or the General Chapter, depending on the regulations of the particular groups (in the Society of Jesus he is directly appointed by the Father General). The "Regulations" (Normae) of 18 June 1901, vest the appointment of the provincial in the general council. The provincial superior is never elected for life, but ordinarily for three or six years. In religious orders with clerics, he is a regular prelate, and has the rank of ordinary with quasi-episcopal jurisdiction. In religious institutes whether of men or of women, he or she appoints the regular confessors, calls together the Provincial Chapter, presides over its deliberations, and takes care that the orders of the General Chapter and the Superior General are properly carried out. He or she is an ex officio member of the chapter. His or her principal duty is to make regular visitations of the houses of the province in the name of the General and to report to the latter on all the religious and the property of the order; authority over the various houses and local superiors differs in different orders. He or she has, in many cases, the right of appointment to the less important offices. For institutes of men, at the end of his term of office, the provincial is bound, according to the Constitution "Nuper" of Innocent XII (23 December 1697), to prove that he has complied with all the precepts of that decree concerning Masses; if he fails to do so, he loses his right to be elected and to vote in the general chapter.
A unique case was eastern Paraguay, where the Spanish colonial authorities allowed the Jesuit missionaries to establish both the Catholic faith and a unique, humane regime for the local Guarani Indian tribes, making their provincial superior the governor of the first autonomous Indian reserve, known as the (Jesuit) Misiones or Reducciones, till 1667, ten years after a Guarani rebellion against increased abuse by the regular colonial authorities: the territory lost its status and was divided up between Spain (then under the viceroyalty of la Plata, previously part of Upper Peru) and Portugal (Brazil).
Primate is a title or rank bestowed on some important archbishops in certain Christian churches. Depending on the particular tradition, it can denote either jurisdictional authority or (usually) ceremonial precedence.
The Franciscans are a group of related mendicant religious orders within the Catholic Church, founded in 1209 by Saint Francis of Assisi. These orders include the Order of Friars Minor, the Order of Saint Clare, and the Third Order of Saint Francis. They adhere to the teachings and spiritual disciplines of the founder and of his main associates and followers, such as Clare of Assisi, Anthony of Padua, and Elizabeth of Hungary, among many others.
Augustinians are members of Christian religious orders that follow the Rule of Saint Augustine, written in about 400 AD by Augustine of Hippo. There are two distinct types of Augustinians in Catholic religious orders dating back to the 12th–13th centuries:
The Barnabites, formally the Clerics Regular of Saint Paul, are a religious order of clerics regular founded in 1530 in the Catholic Church. They may use the postnominal initials of simply "B." or "C.R.S.P.". Associated to the members of the Order are the Angelic Sisters of St. Paul and the lay members of the Barnabite lay movement.
In the Catholic Church, a religious order is a type of religious community characterised by its members professing solemn vows. According to the 1983 Code of Canon Law, they are classed as a type of religious institute.
The Superior General of the Society of Jesus is the official title of the leader of the Society of Jesus – the Roman Catholic religious order which is also known as the Jesuits. He is generally addressed as Father General. The position sometimes carries the nickname of the Black Pope, because of his responsibility for the largest Catholic, male religious order and is contrasted to the white garb of the pope. The thirty-first and current Superior General is the Reverend Father Arturo Sosa, elected by the 36th General Congregation on 14 October 2016.
The term "Third Order" signifies, in general, lay members of religious orders, who do not necessarily live in community and yet can claim to wear the habit and participate in the good works of some great order. Roman Catholicism, Anglicanism, and Lutheranism all recognize Third Orders. They were a twelfth-century adaptation of the medieval monastic confraternities.
A definitor is, in Latin, he who defines. In the Catholic Church, however, this is a title with different specific uses. There are secular definitors, who have a limited amount of oversight over a part of a diocese. There are also definitors in religious orders who generally provide counsel and assistance to the superiors general and provincial superiors of their order.
The Order of Friars Minor Conventual, commonly known as the Conventual Franciscans, or Minorites, is a Catholic branch of the Franciscans who were founded by Francis of Assisi in 1209.
A Superior General or General Superior is the leader or head of a religious institute in the Roman Catholic Church. The Superior General usually holds supreme executive authority in the religious order, while the general chapter has legislative authority.
Giovanni Paolo Oliva was the eleventh Superior General of the Society of Jesus.
Prior, derived from the Latin for "earlier, first", is an ecclesiastical title for a superior, usually lower in rank than an abbot or abbess. Its earlier generic usage referred to any monastic superior.
A canonical visitation is the act of an ecclesiastical superior who in the discharge of his office visits persons or places with a view to maintaining faith and discipline, and of correcting abuses. A person delegated to carry out such a visitation is called a visitor. When, in exceptional circumstances, the Holy See delegates an apostolic visitor "to evaluate an ecclesiastical institute such as a seminary, diocese, or religious institute ... to assist the institute in question to improve the way in which it carries out its function in the life of the Church," this is known as an apostolic visitation.
The Third Order of Saint Francis, is a third order in the Franciscan order. The preaching of Francis of Assisi, as well as his example, exercised such an attraction on people that many married men and women wanted to join the First Order (friars) or the Second Order (nuns), but this being incompatible with their state of life, Francis found a middle way and in 1221 gave them a rule according to the Franciscan charism. Those following this rule became members of the Franciscan Third Order, sometimes called tertiaries. It includes religious congregations of men and women, known as Third Order Regulars; and fraternities of men and women, Third Order Seculars. The latter do not wear a religious habit, take vows, or live in community. However, they do gather together in community on a regular basis. "They make profession to live out the Gospel life and commit themselves to that living out the Gospel according to the example of Francis."
The Order of Saint Augustine is a mendicant order of the Catholic Church. It was founded in 1244 by bringing together several eremetical groups in the Tuscany region who were following the Rule of Saint Augustine, written by Saint Augustine of Hippo in the fifth century. They are also commonly known as the Augustinians or Austin friars, and were also historically known as the Order of Hermits of Saint Augustine.
The Third Order Regular of St. Francis of Penance is a mendicant order rooted in the Third Order of St. Francis which was founded in 1447.
Matteo Serafini was the co-founder and first Superior-General of the Order of Friars Minor Capuchins, the principal branch of the Franciscans issued from the Reform of the Observance.
Custos means a religious superior or an official in the Franciscan Order. The precise meaning has differed over time, and among the Friars Minor, Conventuals, and Capuchins.
Precedence signifies the right to enjoy a prerogative of honor before other persons; for example, to have the most distinguished place in a procession, a ceremony, or an assembly, to have the right to express an opinion, cast a vote, or append a signature before others, to perform the most honorable offices.
The Order of Friars Minor is a mendicant Catholic religious order, founded in 1209 by Francis of Assisi. The order adheres to the teachings and spiritual disciplines of the founder and of his main associates and followers, such as Clare of Assisi, Anthony of Padua, and Elizabeth of Hungary, among many others. The Order of Friars Minor is the largest of the contemporary First Orders within the Franciscan movement.