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From: Mark Weber
Date: Wednesday, August 31, 2005 10:33 PM
To: Antonio Pernia
Subject: Urgent Reply, Please!

Dear Fr. Pernia,

As you know, the confreres at Bay St. Louis in USS have been hit with tremendous destruction by Hurricane Katrina. In speaking to them, they have appealed to us to help with sending some vehicles and supplies, as well as able-bodied confreres to help with the evacuation and salvage. I have solicited volunteers from USC willing and able to spend a week going this.

My question: can I permit the novices to spend a week there without it counting as time to be made up in their novitiate year? The Handbook, section C.5.4 states that the "major superior can permit a group of novices to live for a stated period of time in another house of the institutue, designated by the same superior... certain such periods would not be counted among the time to be made up for.." and examples of the 30-day retreat or vacation are given. My confusion stems from C.5.3 which demands that certain other activities away from the novitiate must be made up.

Jim Bergin, Novice Director, is concerned that if such time would have to be made up for it would create difficulties towards the end of the novitiate year.

Since we are attempting to respond in a swift manner to our confreres' appeal for such help for Bay St. Louis, I kindly ask for a reply to this matter as soon as possible.

Thank you!
Yours in the Word,
Mark Weber, SVD
USC Provincial