16th November 1769

The Papal Bull Supremi Apostolatus, signed by Pope Clement XIV on 16th November 1769, contained the approbation of the Passionist Congregation, to which, besides juridic personality, other faculties were acknowledged. It stated that

  • The Institute is established as a Congregation of simple vows;
  • the Congregation may erect houses with churches in which to celebrate the divine offices and Mass
  • it may hold general and provincial chapters;
  • clerics may be ordained on the sole testimonials of the general or provincial under the title of “common board” or “of poverty”;
  • the general chapter and the superior general with the consent of his council can, for just causes, dispense simple vows and dismiss religious;
  • the Congregation may quest everywhere with the sole permission of the ordinary and shares all the privileges and indulgences granted to other existing orders and congregations;
  • all bishops are exhorted by the pope to receive benignly the members of the Institute and to consider them as “indafatigable laborers in the Lord’s vineyard.”

– History of the Passionists, Father Fabiano Giorgini, C.P., Volume 1, p. 190-191.

St. Paul of the Cross writes

“Last Sunday I had a long audience with our Holy Father in his own room, as poor as one used by a poor religious. With the extreme refinement of charity that he shows towards me, he handed me the bull with his own hands, that is, the extensive drafts thereof, rich in privileges, and told me to take it to the cardinal designated by his orders to put it on parchment with its solemn authentic formulae – and all free!” (Letter 1848, 7th November 1769)

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