“Francis helps us to see that an integral ecology calls for openness to categories which transcend the language of mathematics and biology, and take us to the heart of what it is to be human. Just as happens when we fall in love with someone, whenever he would gaze at the sun, the moon or the smallest of animals, he burst into song, drawing all other creatures into his praise…. Such a conviction cannot be written off as naive romanticism, for it affects the choices which determine our behaviour. If we approach nature and the environment without this openness to awe and wonder, if we no longer speak the language of fraternity and beauty in our relationship with the world, our attitude will be that of masters, consumers, ruthless exploiters, unable to set limits on their immediate needs. By contrast, if we feel intimately united with all that exists, then sobriety and care will well up spontaneously. The poverty and austerity of Saint Francis were no mere veneer of asceticism, but something much more radical: a refusal to turn reality into an object simply to be used and controlled…..Our world has a grave social debt towards the poor because they are denied the right to a life consistent with their inalienable dignity…” Pope Francis, Laudato Si’
Brothers and Sisters,
This newsletter was due on June 1st, but we held off in great hope of receiving the new encyclical on the Care For Our Common Home from Pope Francis. Although it is not yet read in its entirety, he names our social sins and exploitative practices and attitudes in light of the Gospel, which always cares for the vulnerable on the margins who are the recipients of the effects of the first world’s consumption and greed. It was written for all those of good will, to strengthen and connect, challenge and correct us as the song goes. More on this to come.
We had our annual Minister’s Meeting. One of the highlights was the Rite of Installation for Regional Spiritual Assistants for the Secular Franciscan Order. Four Franciscan sisters have generously lent their time, energy and love as a witness of fraternal affection of the religious towards the Secular Franciscans, and the bond of communion between the first Order or Third Order Regular and our fraternities. Sister Loretta Schaff, OSF stood in for her sisters (Sr. Sharon Bongiorno, FSPA, Sr. Mary Ann Conley, OSF, and Sr. Patricia Michalek, OFS) and thoughout the gathering she broadened the functional to remind us of the Franciscan spirit of being in relationship as servant leaders intrinsic to the heart of our particular charism. It was also wonderful to once again share our common purpose as Secular Franciscans with the REC and fellow ministers. More will be shared at our next gathering.
June 20th is World Refugee Day. Maybe some of us who are able might write the President/Congress to change policies regarding the internment of women and children. Perhaps you have some other action to share that we might journey together on.
Lastly, we come to the great feast of St. Clare in August, the beautiful strong candle light of the Franciscans on August 11th. May we emulate her faithfulness and steadfastness.
God grant us all humility, non-violence in our thoughts and actions, and gratitude for the gifts we are given as we strive to enflesh True Joy – an overcoming of our false selves for the love of God and our brothers and sisters.
Peace and All Good,
Pope Francis received the Order of Friars Minor in May and we will be reviewing the Pope’s address as it has much to say to Seculars as well.
We will be finishing up The Joy of The Gospel and together we will be discerning what direction to take after these two items.
Congratulations to our new Council:
Minister: Michele Brodoski, OFS
Vice Minister: Debbie Wasche, OFS
Secretary: Joanne Kraan, OFS
Treasurer: Cecelia Rayburn, OFS
Formation Director: Patricia Mihalic Doyle, OFS
Councilor: Ralph Wasche, OFS
Many thanks to Dan and Sarah Mulholland, OFS for their loving presence to us.
Can Clares’s willingness to accept enclosure out of love for Christ prompt us to welcome temporary enclosure for the same reason?
Madonnna Chiara, Pope Alexander the IV called you a “lofty candlestick of holiness that burned brightly in the tabernacle of the Lord.” Burn brightly before me now, that I may see you at San Damiano and learn the value of enclosure. Intercede for me that my restive spirit may gladly settle in one sacred place where God can be “the meaning of my hours.” Let the light of Christ, shining through you, illumine my way. Clare-candle, burn brightly. Amen.
– From Six Ways to Pray from Six Great Saints, Gloria Hutchinson
SFRV Treasurer’s Report
As of May 31, 2015Gathering Fund is $521.93
Fair Share is $0
Well Fund is $101.38
Heifer International Fund is $30 SFRV Fraternity Members Birthdays
4 Gloria Ray OFS
7 Joanne Kraan OFS
20 Jo Ann Kemp OFS
SFRV Fraternity Members Profession Date
Patricia Doyle OFS (1984)
Cecilia Rayburn OFS (1968)
Catherine Paradis OFS (1968)
Franciscan Calendar, USA
12 Bl Jolenta, religious of II Order
13 St Anthony of Padua, priest and doctor of I Order
22 St Thomas More, martyr of the III Order
30 Bl Raymond Lull, martyr of III Order
8 Bl Gregory Grassi, bishop, and companions, martyrs of I and III Order
9 St Nicholas Pick, priest, and companions, martyrs of I Order
10 St Veronica Giuliani, vigin of II Order
12 Sts John Jones and John Wall, priests and martyrs of I Order
13 Bl Angeline of Marsciano, religious of III Order
14 St Francis Solano, priest of I Order
15 St Bonaventure, bishop and doctor of I Order
21 St Lawrence of Brindisi, priest and doctor of I Order
23 Bl Cunegunda, religious of II Order
23 St Bridget, widow of III Order
24 Bl Louise of Savoy, religious of II Order
27 Bl Mary Magdalene of Martinegro, virgin of II Order
2 Our Lady of the Angels of Portiuncula
4 St John Baptist Mary Vianney, priest of III Order
7 Bls Agathangelus and Cassian, priests and martyrs of I Order
8 Holy Father Dominic, priest, founder of the Order of Preachers
11 St Clare of Assisi, virgin of II Order
14 St Maximilian Kolbe, priest of I Order
17 St Roch, member of III Order
19 St Louis, bishop of I Order
21 St Pius X, pope, member of III Order
25 St Louis IX, king, member and patron of III Order
“Narrated in the account on your origins is that it was requested of the first Friars to show which was their cloister. To answer, they went up a hill and ‘pointing out all around the earth where their sight reached, said: ‘This is our cloister’. Dear Brothers, to this cloister, which is the whole world, go also today driven by the love of Christ, as my Friars in the Lord Jesus Christ, that when they go around the world, they not quarrel and avoid disputes of words and not judge others, but that they be meek, peaceful and modest, mild and humble, speaking honestly with everyone. In whatever house they enter, they must say first of all, ‘Peace to this house’, and let them eat all the foods that are put before them… This last thing is good!” – Pope Francis in his address to the Friars May 26, 2015