The Benedictine Congregation to which Pluscarden belongs, now known as the Subiaco-Cassinese Congregation, holds its General Chapter every eight years. This important event took place in Rome this year from Saturday 17 to Friday 23 September. Pluscarden was well represented. Fr. Abbot Anselm was there, both in his capacity as Abbot of Pluscarden, and as Visitor of our wide-spread English Province. Fr. Bede was there as Prior of Kristo Buase. And Frs. Giles and Dunstan were there, as translators from French and Italian, respectively.
On Thursday 22 September the Chapter elected its new Abbot President. He is from Colombia in South America: Dom Guillermo Arboleda Tamayo, abbot of the Abbey of Santa Maria of Medellin and Administrator of Guatapè. He succeeds Dom Bruno Marin of Praglia in Italy, who has served as President since 2004.
News of the election came as a relief to the Pluscarden brethren, since there had been fears that our own Abbot Anselm might be chosen. Had this happened, he would have had to renounce the care of Pluscarden, and take up permanent residence in Rome. So as we pray for Dom Guillermo, we also give thanks to God that our own community has been spared having to make another very major renunciation.