Fr. David Kinnear Glenday, MCCJ, Rector General Emeritus of the Comboni Missionaries and General Secretary of the Union of Superiors General (USG), the guest speaker

Casa D’Esercizi Spirituali dei Passionisti, Rome, Italy 24th – 27th January, 2018

Communion and co-responsibility – celebrating and transmitting the joy of communion and co-responsibility

The 5th Ordinary General Assembly of the Union of Catholic Apostolate took place from January 23rd to 27th 2018, at the Retreat Centre of the Passionist Community in Rome. We were 39 participants: Members of the GCC, Presidents and Vice-Presidents of the National Coordination Councils, 2 representatives of NCC Presidents, the General Secretary and secretarial assistant, the General Bursar, the 3 invited members, the moderators, translators and secretaries.
Fr. David Kinnear Glenday, MCCJ, Rector General Emeritus of the Comboni Missionaries and General Secretary of the Union of Superiors General (USG), the guest speaker invited to enlighten our sharing, provided us with a very incisive reflection which opened our reciprocal dialogue. His starting point was from chapter 10 of St. Luke’s Gospel and he drew a comparison between the work of our Assembly and the dialogue between Jesus and the 72 disciples on their joyful return following the mission Jesus had entrusted to them.

Fr. David invited us to live with intense and justified joy the real life of the Union; his presentation centred on 5 verbs which characterised the life of our Assembly – they were: to remember – our own personal story as disciples; to discern – from what moved us; to desire – the good that is coming to birth in us; to serve – to serve the joy of the People of God in going out, as Jesus did; and, to console – all those we meet in our apostolic mission.

Five verbs, five stepping stones, on which we trod and on which we can continue to journey with confidence. We looked closely at some of the different aspects of the Union which were chosen by the GCC, they were: formation, finance and evangelisation, and this was done in a sincere and open manner, as we sought to move towards a greater harmony in the life of the Union: it is our hope that the fruits of our discussion will lead to incisive action by the new General Coordination Council and by the National Coordination Councils, because, as Fr. David Glenday, pointed out to us – “the first step in co- responsibility is to experiment with courage and humility.”
The Members of the 5th Ordinary UAC General Assembly 2018


“Priesthood as a position not of power but of service.”

Mark Stephen Murray
The Comboni Missionary Order of Verona should take note of Dr Des Cahill, “it was important to rethink the priesthood as a position not of power but of service.” Service, is not shouting at an abuse victim “you and your friends are all money grabbers.”
Service is not saying to a victim of sexual abuse: “if you are waiting for an apology you will be waiting a long time and your wait will be in vain,” (Superior of the Comboni Mother House, Verona, April 2015)
Service is not dismissing a victim of abuse by saying: “There is nothing here for you. I will pray for you.” (Superior of the Comboni Mother House, Verona, April 2015)
Service is not the Comboni Order taking a victim to court after he met and forgave his childhood Comboni priestly abuser.


During the festivities of this past week, Pope Francis reminded our fourteen new Cardinals (and each one of us): “When we forget the mission, when we lose sight of the real faces of our brothers and sisters, our life gets locked up in the pursuit of our own interests and securities. Resentment then begins to grow, together with sadness and revulsion. Gradually we have less and less room for others, for the Church community, for the poor, for hearing the Lord’s voice. Joy fades and the heart withers.”

It would appear that somebody is lying.

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“Father Romano Nardo was a well known and respected figure in his place of origin”

How can Comboni Fr. Nardo be a “respected and well known figure in his home region” and be  –  as the Comboni Missionary Order of Verona  states. –   too unfit to travel and answer questions about sexual abuse?


Italian Newspaper Article about Comboni Nardo.

There were looks of disbelief, and  open mouthed bewilderment in and around the diocese of Concordia-Pordenone, after the storm broke that Father Romano Nardo, 73, who was originally from the hamlet of Prata di Sopra, was emblazoned on the pages of La Rebubblca  and had been accused of sexual harassment of a former boy seminarian.


The Religious, now in a protected place and guarded, is the leading figure in a video-recording in which he comes face to face in the Mother House of the Comboni Missionary Order of Verona with a man, aged 59 ,who accused him of sexually abusing him in the 1970s at the Mirfield Seminary in Yorkshire, England.


Father Nardo has never faced legal proceedings or been convicted of those offences, despite the fact that there was an internal investigation into the accusations in 1997 which determined that he had behaved inappropriately. Compensation was paid to a number of the boys who were at that seminary and a request for extradition by the West Yorkshire Police in the UK  was never granted by the Italian authorities.


In Prata, where a brother of Father Nardo still lives and where Father Romano Nardo has returned regularly over the years, family members have preferred not to make any comment on the matter. Silence was also the only reaction from the diocese of Concordia-Pordenone.


The Comboni Missionary Order’s Provincial Superior in London, Martin Devenish, has expressed his condemnation, explaining, however, that he cannot laicise the priest.


Father Romano Nardo was a well known and respected figure in his place of origin, where his visits in the past were often the occasion for one of his lectures on the life of his work in Aduku’s mission in the Diocese of Lira in Uganda – where, according to reports by his brother, he was transferred immediately following the discovery of the young seminarian coming out of his room.



Catholic Church Michigan:
“McGrath says the age of an allegation against any clergy doesn’t matter. He says the archdiocese wants to know so it can consider providing counseling or other assistance.”
Comboni Order of Verona: