Office of Communication of the General Curia in Rome announced, that on Friday, January 24, 2014, Fr. G. Gregory Gay, C.M. Superior General of the Congregation of the Mission and the Daughters of Charity, has appointed Fr. Bernard Schoepfer, C.M., a confrere from the Province of Paris as the Director General of the Daughters of Charity. He will serve in this position for a three-year term. In a letter to Daughters of Charity Visitors, the Superior General noted, that after informing of the resignation of Fr. Patrick Griffin, C.M., due to health concerns which no longer allow him to carry out his ministry as the Director General of the Daughters of Charity, he “consulted Sr. Evelyne [Superioress General] and her Councilors, as well as Fr. Patrick himself to find someone to replace him in this ministry. Today, after having considered the suggestions I received, and with the consent of the General Council, I have appointed Fr. Bernard Schoepfer, C.M., as the new Director General for the three year term. He generously accepted the nomination counting on your prayers helping him in his new mission”.
Fr. Bernard Schoepfer was born on March 16, 1962 in Bâle, Switzerland and grew up in the Alsace region, Eastern France. He is a member of the Province of Paris, admitted into the Congregation on September 10, 1984, and was ordained priest on May 4, 1989. In his quarter century of ministry, Fr. Bernard has fulfilled a number of varied ministries. Right after ordinatation e has engaged in pastoral work in rural areas of the Diocese of Amiens; in 1998, after completing formation at CIF (International Formartion Center) he was assigned to animate the ministry in the Our Lady of Miraculous Medal Chapel at Rue du Bac, Paris; in the same time as a member of formation team he accompanied seminarians preparing for priesthood from the Congregation; 2000 – 2007 worked as spiritual advisor to the St. Vincent de Paul Society SSVdP in France; since 2004 he serves as Superior at the Maison-Mère – Motherhouse of the Congregation of the Mission; and since 2007 he is national chaplain of St. Vincent’s Teams (Equipes saint Vincent – AIC France). Additionally, he has been member of Provincial Council of Paris for 10 years.
Fr. Gay addressed similar Letter to Provincials of the Congregation of the Mission in which he expressed gratitude to Fr. Bernard Schoepfer for his generosity in accepting this assignment as well as offering thanks to the outgoing director Fr. Patrick Griffin: “I thank Fr. Bernard for his willingness to serve, and I assure him of our prayers and fraternal support in his new ministry. I express my deep gratitude to Fr. Patrick Griffin for his tireless devotion to duty as Director General these past three years. We pray the Lord grant him good health, so that he may continue for many years to “serve the Lord with gladness”. (Ps. 100:2)
Fr. Bernard is scheduled to assume his new duties in late March. At the end of his letter to the Vincentian Provincials, Fr. Gregory Gay exhorted confreres: “Let us entrust Fr. Bernard’s mandate to our Blessed Mother, because as St. Vincent told us, “When the Mother of God has been invoked and taken as patroness of important matters, everything can only go well and accrue to the glory of Jesus, her Son.” (SV: XIII b, p.3)
Read the full text of the Nomination Letter for the Provincials
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