Original Franciscan "Third Order" -- Confraternity of Penitents
Make Every Day a Path to Holiness
GUIDELINES FOR FORMATORS
Formators are those who review lessons for those in formation in the Confraternity of Penitents. This page instructs formators on how to respond to members' lessons and also has guidelines for members in formation.
May the Lord bless you abundantly in your call to the ministry of Formation in the Confraternity of Penitents. This call from the Lord is rewarding to both you as Formator, and your Formatee(s), as you grow together in faith.
1. As a formator, you must be dedicated to living the CFP Rule and in total agreement with the teachings of the Catholic Church.
2. Your call as Formator is to assist Members and Associates (Formatees) in understanding the Rule and the Catholic Faith; and in applying the Constitutions of the Rule to their own lives by reviewing the lessons they submit to you. Following prayer for guidance and taking time for prayerful reflection on the responses in each lesson, your comments and instruction should be stated in written sentences, showing understanding and respect for the writer. In special circumstances, with the approval of the Minister General, the lessons and reviews may not be stated in written form.
3. Respond to lessons in a timely manner (generally within 2 weeks of receipt of lesson).
4. Encourage Formatees to keep copies of their lessons for future reference; however, you do not need to keep copies yourself unless you wish to.
5. Keep accurate ledgers of lessons completed successfully.
6. All lessons submitted to you are completely confidential and must not be shared in any way with any other individual except by the permission of the formattee.
7. Periodically update your Chapter/Circle Minister (if any) and your Regional Minister on the status of your Formatees. This must be done at least once a year. Regional Ministers should then update the CFP Administrative Headquarters in order to update members' and associates' files.
8. Formation applications must be completed yearly. Postulants enter Formation on either Ash Wednesday or August 1st. Formatees in Novice 1-3 begin lessons for the next level on Ash Wednesday. All formation applications and lessons are in the CFP Handbook and on the CFP website. Applications should come to you and also to the CFP Administrative Office.
9. Members are expected to complete their formation lessons within a year’s time and move on to the next year of Formation by Ash Wednesday in order to proceed. Members who do not complete a year of Formation by Ash Wednesday are allowed to continue with that year of Formation with the approval of you, as Formator, the Regional Minister and the Minister General. The appropriate application for the year must be completed with copies submitted to you, the CFP Office, and the above ministers.
10. Consult your Chapter/Circle Minister for concerns about a Formatee, (for isolated members consult your Regional Minister). If necessary, you may consult the Minister General.
11 . Review the rights, duties, and obligations for formators in the Handbook of the Confraternity of Penitents under the chapter entitled: “Rights, Duties, Obligations,” as well as the chapter entitled: “Formation,” from which these guidelines are taken. Also review the “Special Situations” section for Formation, in the Directory of the handbook where many situations and irregularities are further discussed.