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Feast of St. Francis ’14 - Letter and Message of the Minister General

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October 03, 2014

sanfrancescoMESSAGES - The solemnity of our seraphic father offers us once again the opportunity to send each one of you our fraternal greeting, along with the hope that by celebrating the memory of Saint Francis we will each be renewed in our witness to Gospel living. For us brothers in the general Definitorium this feast of St. Francis is the final opportunity we have to share with your some aspect of our service and some of the desires that encourage us.

My dearest brothers, the Lord give you His peace!

The solemnity of our seraphic father offers us once again the opportunity to send each one of you our fraternal greeting, along with the hope that by celebrating the memory of Saint Francis we will each be renewed in our witness to Gospel living For us brothers in the general Definitorium this feast of St. Francis is the final opportunity we have to share with your some aspect of our service and some of the desires that encourage us. A grateful memory First of all we would like to thank the Lord for the path that we have walked in this six year period. The rediscovery of the Grace of origins in the previous six year period has led us to take up our service with the desire to Start again from the Gospel, which is our primary rule, in order to live its radical nature and offer it to contemporary men and women. This makes us even more authentic Bearers of the gift of the Gospel . Applying the evangelical demands to serious reform of life ( Moratorium ), the inevitable restructuring already in process in our Provinces and interprovincial collaboration have brought us to the desire of re-appropriating our Franciscan identity , as it is proposed by the Rule and general Constitutions and how each one of us has embraced it in our own religious profession. The form of Gospel life revealed by Francis now entrusted to us needs to be continually revitalized in our communities and incarnated in the Church and world today.

The Kairòs of the Lord

We find in the events of these days and in the witness of some persons many kairòs moments, grace filled events , that we cannot but welcome with gratitude, allowing them to challenge and stimulate us. First of all, the Holy Father, by choosing the programmatic name of Francis, is proposing to the Church the lifestyle and message that were proper to the Poor One of Assisi, which is to say constant referral to the Gospel, closeness, mercy, reconciliation, brotherhood, essentiality, simplicity of life, proximity to the poor, commitment to peace and care for creation. These and others are aspects that we should live above all and demonstrate to the Church and world What’s more, Pope Francis has desired to dedicate the year 2015 to consecrated life, proposing once again to religious men and women, the joy of the Gospel that constitutes the intrinsic beauty of consecrated life. The Pontiff invites us once again to revisit the profound center of our personal life, exhorting us to the “restlessness of the heart,” that can only bring us to a renewed personal encounter with the Lord Jesus. And then how can we forget the prophetic inheritance that was left to us by Br. Giacomo Bini, our former general Minister, who left us much too soon to go to the Father’s house? We know full well just how much he was profoundly rooted in the Gospel of Jesus Christ and how often he exhorted us to become a “parable of God’s Reign” with an existence that has been “conquered by God,” by means of radicality and transparent signs, by the capacity to “speak to” the presence of God’s Reign and to restore authentic credibility to our life project, to brotherly dialogue with others and openness to new horizons. These new horizons spur us on to allow ourselves to be led to the Lord and to leave behind diverse forms of “structures,” be they mental, spiritual or material, so as to go throughout the world and live as missionaries, entering into the depth of the life of God’s people, without being content to simply “stay” in our closed houses and communities.

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Source: ofm.org

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