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Via Cassia 645, 00189 Roma, ITALY / E-mail: vivatsvd@verbodivino.it; vivatssps-roma@pcn.net

Tel: (+39) 06-332-69-238; (+39) 06-332-5661 / Fax: (+39) 06-332-52-148

30 July 2004

To all Provincial / Regional Leadership Teams

Re.: NGO-1a/0027/04
Official Accreditation of VIVAT International as NGO with Special Consultative Status granted by the Economic Social Council (ECOSOC) of the United Nations

Dear Provincial / Regional Superior / Leader,
Dear Councillors,

Greetings in the joy-giving Spirit of the Divine Word!

In the joint letter that SVD Superior General Antonio Pernia and I, as SSpS Congregational Leader, wrote to you on 28 May 2004, we shared with you the good news that VIVAT International had already been recommended by the NGO Section / DESA, UN, for Special Consultative Status with the Economic Social Council (ECOSOC) of the UN.

Now, it is with great joy that we share with you the confirmation of that very good news. On 27 July 2004, we received from Fr. Lawrence Correa, SVD, Chairperson of the Executive Team of VI in New York, a copy of the faxed official letter of Ms. Hanifa Mezoui, Chief of the NGO Section / DESA, UN, on 23 July 2004, informing VI Central Office in New York that ECOSOC, in its regular session in July 2004 decided to grant Special Consultative Status to VIVAT International.

For the successful application of VI for accreditation as an NGO in the UN, we thank Fr. Lawrence and Sr. Maria Carmen, Fresnida Castro, SSpS, for their efforts in preparing the groundwork for the application of VI and then in preparing the application papers and the necessary supporting documents that were then submitted to the NGO Section / DESA, UN. And our special gratitude goes to Fr. Lawrence who later on perseveringly and patiently followed up the application, attending all the sessions that would lead to the recommendation for the official accreditation of VIVAT.

A quick looking back into the process brought us to quite a number of years and events as well as to a list of persons to whom we owe our gratitude. While it is not possible to name all of them, we would want to give special thanks to the USA Provinces of the SVD and SSpS - that have generously walked with us from the very conceptual stage of this venture. Not only have they been with us from the first moment of research. The SVD Chicago Province, with its own expertise, deals with the legal and financially-related questions and representations. The SSpS Paraclete Province even opened and maintains a Sisters’ community in New York precisely to be a support group to our own Sisters who would work in the Executive Team in this city.

We thank God, above all, for this accreditation of VI which gives us new possibilities in carrying out our mission in the context of the changing world. And now we are called upon to collaborate well with the Executive Team of VI in New York (VINY) of which Fr. Lawrence is the Chairperson and Sr. Gretta, Patrick Gretta Maria Fernandes, SSpS, the Co-chairperson (beginning November 2004), so that in your own area you would be able to make the most of the accredited status of VI in realizing the purpose for which VI was established and for which great efforts were made to attain its recognition as an accredited NGO in the UN. We also encourage you to inform individuals, groups, institutions / organizations that VI is ready to accept as members those who are interested to network with and to collaborate in its mission of addressing the key issues of focus of both Congregations.

Very truly yours,

Sr. Agada Valeria Brand, SSpS
President, VIVAT International Board of Directors

N.B. May we request you to please give a copy of this letter to the JPIC Coordinator in your Province and Region? Thank you very much!