Australian Provincial Father Joachim Rego cp was elected last week as the new Superior General of the Passionists during the congregation's 46th General Chapter in Rome. His election becomes doubly significant this year, as Passionists celebrate their 125th year in Australia.
Fr Joachim's election also represents a major shift in leadership with three members of the new Council coming from the Asia Pacific region. Adelaide born Fr Denis Travers cp, Fr Joachim’s predecessor as Provincial in Australia, was re-elected as a General Consultor for a second six-year term. He is joined by other General Consultors Fr Sabinus Lohin cp of the Province of Our Lady, Queen of Peace, Indonesia; Fr Antonio Maria Munduate Larrea cp of the Province of the Holy Faith, Colombia; Fr Michael Ogweno cp of the Vicariate of Our Lady, Mother of Africa, Botswana South Africa, and Zambia; Fr Augusto Canali cp of the Province of Calvary, Brazil and Mozambique; Father Giuseppe Adobati cp of the Province of the Immaculate Heart of Mary, Italy (North).
Fr Joachim was born in Rangoon, Burma and as a teenager, migrated with his family to Australia. After a couple of years at De La Salle College Marrickville, he joined the Passionists and completed his HSC at St Leo’s College Wahroonga in 1973. He professed first vows in 1976 and was ordained on 28th November 1981 at Marrickville.
Fr Joachim worked for 18 years in Papua New Guinea, as Regional Vicar, Novice Master, Formator and was President of the Conference of Major Superiors of PNG and the Solomon Islands. He also worked as Novice Master in the Indian Vicariate of the Passionist Congregation. After working on the Parish of St Brigid’s Marrickville, he was elected as Provincial Superior in 2007, and re-elected at the Provincial Chapter in 2011.
Fr Joachim is the eldest son of Mr and Mrs George & Celina Rego of Marrickville. His brother Fr Aloysius Rego odc is the Regional Vicar of the Discalced Carmelite Friars of the Australia-Oceania Region. His sister Bernadette Begg and brother Valerian Rego both live in Marrickville with their spouses and children and are all very active members of St Brigid’s Parish.
A Liturgical Reception for Fr Joachim will be held at St Brigid’s Marrickville on a date to be announced.
(Based on a press release by Fr John Pearce cp, on behalf of Fr Thomas McDonough cp and reports from http://thepassionists.org.)