“Grow together to revitalize ourselves and respond better to God's plan and to what the Church and the world need”
“Grow together to revitalize ourselves and respond better to God's plan and to what the Church and the world need:
- Grow together in living the charism.
- Grow together in the following of Jesus Christ.
- Grow together in accompaniment
- Grow together as disciples and missionaries listening to and serving the people of God.
- Grow together in co-responsibility”.
This is the priority objective for the years 2022-2026 that has been approved by the 128th Chapter of the Province of Saint Nicholas of Tolentine of the Order of Augustinian Recollects, which has taken place in Marcilla (Navarra, Spain) between the 20th and the 30th of June 2022 with the participation of 32 chapter delegates.
Likewise, a Life and Mission Project has been drafted and sent for approval to the prior general with his Council. These are 63 Decisions, which are intended to be practical, evaluable and with a specific person in charge and a specific execution time. Religious, communities and ministries of the Province will try to ensure that this priority objective is fulfilled in all aspects of the life of the Province, specified in the Decisions.
Thus, there are up to twenty Decisions related to Government, structure, economy and communication; another twelve are dedicated to initial and permanent formation and accompaniment; eleven have as their central theme the parish and missionary apostolate; ten refer to the accompaniment of lay people in Secular Fraternities, Augustinian Recollect Youth, evangelization teams or teachers, volunteering...; nine decisions refer to the educational apostolate; and a Decision is dedicated in a special way to vocational ministry.
The Province has decided in this 128th Chapter to focus its activities, efforts and priorities in four fields: accompaniment of the laity, ongoing formation, care for the elderly and care and support for vulnerable people to create completely safe environments for them.
A new team to execute the Life and Mission Project
To carry out this task, the Province of Saint Nicholas of Tolentine has formed a new government team, led by Carlos González Castellanos as the new prior provincial until the next Chapter, which will be held in 2026.
Carlos González Castellanos, prior provincial
Born in Capilla de Guadalupe (Jalisco, Mexico) on January 29, 1964 (58 years old), Brother Carlos professed his profession in 1986 and was ordained a priest in 1990. He was currently master of the professed at the Saint Augustine House of Formation in Las Rozas (Madrid), where the last stage of the initial formation of candidates for the Augustinian Recollect religious life of the Province is based.
Fray Carlos has a degree in Ecclesiastical Studies from the University of Navarra in Spain, a degree in Philosophy from the Gregorian University in Rome and has special courses for formators and companions held in Guadalajara (Jalisco, Mexico) and Mexico City.
The initial formation has been his main experience of service to the brothers, going through almost all the stages except for the novitiate: the Querétaro aspirancy, the Mexico City postulancy and the Las Rozas theologate.
He has also actively collaborated in government service; He has been prior of the Postulancy of Mexico City, vicar of the Vicariate of Mexico and Costa Rica, and provincial councilor. This part of his life is completed and complemented by his active participation in the formation and strengthening of the Augustinian Recollect Spirituality Centers (CEAR) and in the Revitalization Team of the Order of Augustinian Recollects. (RTO).
Juan Carlos Avitia Aguilar, Vicar of the Province and First Councilor.
A Mexican from Ávila Camacho (Chihuahua), Juan Carlos was born on March 9, 1972, has been a religious since 1995 and a priest since 2000. He has a degree in Ecclesiastical Studies from the University of Navarra (Spain) and has studied Moral Theology in the Higher Institute of Moral Sciences of Madrid. Currently his destination was the community of Valladolid, as prior.
The ministerial apostolate has been the center of action and service of Juan Carlos to the Order and the Church, mainly in urban parishes in Madrid (La Elipa, Santa Rita) and Zaragoza. He is currently also the parish priest of two small Castilian-Leonese rural towns, Alcazarén and Hornillos. He was also chaplain of the Augustinus Nebrija University Residence in Madrid.
Juan Luis González Ríos, Second Counselor
At 63 years old (Alberguería de Argañán, Salamanca, Spain, November 9, 1948) Juan Luis is the senior counselor by age and years of experience as a counselor, especially dedicated to the world of Education and Recollect educational centers.
Juan Luis has a degree in Ecclesiastical Studies from the University of Navarra (Spain) and a degree in Hispanic Philosophy and Letters from the Santo Tomás University of Bogotá (Colombia). He has been an Augustinian Recollect religious since 1977 and a priest since 1982.
He has worked in the schools of the Province in Spain: Saint Augustine of Chiclana de la Frontera, Cádiz (1988-1989); Saint Augustine of Valladolid (1992-1997 and since 2006) and Romareda de Zaragoza (1997-2006). In all of them he has sought paths of shared mission with the laity.
José Alberto Moreno Carrillo, third councilor
He is from La Rioja from Arnedo (Spain) and is 49 years old (April 30, 1973). José Alberto has been a religious since 1992 and a priest since 1998, with a degree in Ecclesiastical Studies from the University of Navarra and in Pastoral Theology from the Pontifical Salesian University of Rome (Italy).
After some intense years dedicated to ministerial ministry in Rome and Getafe (Madrid, Spain), José Alberto has been the founder and promoter of one of the most special and beloved social projects of the Province of Saint Nicholas of Tolentine, the Santa Mónica Home of Fortaleza (Ceará, Brazil).
Alberto dedicated twelve years of his life to this project that fights against the exploitation, abuse, violence and violation of the rights of minors in that Brazilian city. Currently he is prior and parish priest of Santa Rita in Madrid, Spain.
Luis Diego Ramírez Álvarez, fourth councilor
He is the youngest member of the new Provincial Council at 35 years old (Pacayas de Alvarado, Cartago, Costa Rica, November 20, 1986). He has been a religious since 2010 and a priest since 2016. He has a degree in Ecclesiastical Studies from the Saint Augustine Theological Center (CTSA) in Madrid. In addition, in Rome he did a License in Spiritual Theology with a specialization in vocational training from the Gregorian University and the Diploma for formators and community leaders from the Teresianum Institute.
From very early on, Luis Diego has been linked to houses of formation and vocation ministry. Thus he has been in Brazil for three years (Guaraciaba do Norte and Franca) and, until this Chapter, in the Saint Ezequiel Moreno House of Formation in Pozos de Santa Ana (San José, Costa Rica).
Martín Luengo Cid, vicar of Mexico and Costa Rica
Born in Torrelobatón (Valladolid, Spain), Martín is 53 years old (December 2, 1968). He has been a religious since 1989 and a priest since 1995. He has a degree in Ecclesiastical Studies from the University of Navarra and was currently the prior of the Saint Augustine House of Formation in Mexico City.
Martin's ministerial life has been developed in his entirety in the Vicariate of Mexico and Costa Rica, which he is now going to preside over. He started in the City of Children, a socio-educational ministry in which he has served for two periods (1995-2000 and 2010-2018).
He has also been linked to initial formation, both in the aspirancy of Querétaro (Mexico) and in the Postulancy of San Agustín in Mexico City. As a collaborator of the government service, he had previously been a delegate of Costa Rica (2015-2018) and counselor of the Vicariate (2018-2022).
Marlon Beof Potongan, Vicar of the United States
He is 54 years old and is a native of the Philippines (Panacan, Narra, Palawan, May 19, 1968). He has been a religious since 1992 and a priest since 1997. Due to circumstances in his life, Marlon has had contact with three Provinces of the Order. He studied Philosophy in the Province of Saint Ezequiel Moreno in his native country, in the major seminary of Baguio. The entire formative process of him as a religious (novitiate and theologate) was lived with the Province of Saint Nicholas of Tolentine in Spain, although already as a member of the Province of Saint Agustíe in the United States. After the union of Provinces in 2018, he was definitively incorporated into the Province of Saint Nicholas of Tolentine .
Marlon, who was already vicar of the United States in the previous four years, has worked ministerially in Mexico City and California. He was teacher of the professed in Suffern (New York) for nine years. As vicar of the United States, his current residence has been in Montebello, California.