International Formation Center: St. Vincent De Paul (Cif)
The International Formation Center: St. Vincent de Paul (CIF) is a work established by the Superior General of the Congregation of the Mission with his council to offer programs in Vincentian formation. The programs of the Center are geared primarily toward members of the Congregation of the Mission, but members of other groups sharing in the Vincentian charism will, from time to time, be accepted as participants. The CIF has its seat at the Maison-Mère of the Congregation of the Mission in Paris.
2. Administration and Finances:
The responsibility for CIF rests with the Superior General. With the aid of his council, he reviews and evaluates its programs, examines and approves its budgets and calendar. The Superior General appoints an intermediary between himself and the directors of CIF. The daily administration of the program, however, is the responsibility of its directors.
The CIF is financially self-supporting, through the contributions of provinces and others who send participants to its various programs.
A team consisting of one Director and one or more Assistant Directors, ordinarily members of the Congregation of the Mission, exercises local responsibility for the Center and its programs. The Superior General appoints and terminates the team members. Their terms last three-years and are renewable.
The directors, during the time of their mandate, remain juridically members of their respective provinces. It is up to their Visitors to assign them to a house in their own province so that they might enjoy their rights and be subject to the obligations that their own Visitors specify. The Visitors, however, release them to the General Curia, and the Superior General assigns them to live in the Maison-Mère. The personal poverty of the team members will take into account the norms of their own provinces and the arrangements of their respective Visitors.
4. Relationship to the Maison-Mère:
A written contract, approved by the Superior General and signed by the Superior of the Maison-Mère and the Director, governs the mutual relationships between the Maison-Mère and the CIF. This contract is reviewed and renewed for each calendar year.
Approved by the General Council
24 May 1999
Vincentian Ongoing Formation Program
The International Formation Center: St. Vincent de Paul (CIF) offers a program of ongoing Vincentian formation for members of the Congregation of the Mission, destined to help them carry out the objective of following Christ the Evangelizer of the Poor. The Center also proposes to promote mutual knowledge among members of the Congregation of the Mission and with other members of the Vincentian Family, the unity of the Congregation of the Mission, an international perspective, and interprovincial collaboration.
The Vincentian Ongoing Formation Program is geared primarily toward members of the Congregation of the Mission, but members of other groups sharing in the Vincentian charism will, from time to time, be accepted as participants.
2. Program Design:
The Vincentian Ongoing Formation Program includes the following components: academic disciplines, personal study, research, teaching, the development of the vocation and ministry of the participants, liturgical celebrations, time for prayer and a retreat, the experience of community life, and visits to Vincentian sites. The program lasts for a period of fourteen (14) weeks.
Participants are accepted into the program by the CIF Directors in collaboration with the Visitors and the General Council. The age limit for the participants is generally 35 to 50, with at least five years of active ministry since ordination (for priests, deacons) or vows (for brothers). Those participants whom their respective Visitors send as participants should have the qualities and experience to allow them to benefit from the program.
Individual provinces assume responsibility for the expenses of the participants. These expenses are primarily room, board, and program expenses. Program expenses include the support of the Directors and the purchase and replacement of necessary equipment. The program is financially self-supporting in that it does not regularly receive subsidies from the Congregation of the Mission to carry on its works.
5. Evaluations and Reports:
The Directors provide for regular evaluation of the program by the participants. The results of these evaluations are given to the Superior General at the conclusion of each session. The Directors do not give grade reports, because of the nature of the program, nor do they provide written reports on individual participants, unless their Visitors request them.
Approved by the General Council
24 May 1999