We Have New Rector Major
The 27th General Chapter has elected Fr Ángel Fernández Artime, Provincial of Argentina South, as tenth Successor of Don Bosco.
The election took place at 9.20 on the first ballot.
Let us pray for our New Rector Major – Don Bosco of today!
May God bless him and guid him in this new task!
The official announcement was welcomed with long and warm applause.
Fr Ángel Fernández Artime, 53 years of age was born 21 August 1960 at Gozón-Luanco, Spain; he made his first profession on 3 September 1978, his perpetual profession on 17 June 1984 and was ordained priest on 4 July 1987. Originally from León Province, he has been Youth Ministry Delegate, Rector of the school at Ourense, member of the Council and Vice Provincial and, from 2000 to2006, Provincial of León.
He was a member of the technical commission in preparation for General Chapter 26. In 2009 he was appointed Provincial in Argentine South, a task he has carried out until now.In this capacity he got to know the then Archbishop of Buenos Aires, Cardinal Jorge Mario Bergoglio, now Pope Francis, and to work with him.
He has a Doctorate in Pastoral Theology and a Licence in Philosophy and Pedgagy.
On 23 December last he was appointed Provincial of the new province of Mary Help of Christians in Spain, an office which Fr Angel will obviously not now be able to take on, since he will exercise his ministry as Father of the whole Salesian Congregation.
Best wishes, Fr Angel!
Fr Pascual Chávez, President of the Assembly, invited Fr Angel to come beside him, and said: “Dear Fr Ángel, through your confreres God has called you today to be the successor of Don Bosco. You are not called to be like the Rector Major, nor Don Vecchi nor Don Viganó. You are the successor of Don Bosco, not of Don Chavez. So, on behalf of the Chapter, I ask you if you accept.”
Speaking in Spanish, Fr Angel said with an emotional heart: “I abandon myself to the Lord. We ask Don Bosco and Mary Help of Christians to accompany us and to accompany me, with my brother Salesians and with the Congregation, and I accept with faith.”
The new Rector Major began right away to receive the embrace of all the Chapter members.