The Rule, Article 4

Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Your Words To Me Are Life and Health

Your words to me are light and truth;
From day to day they show
Their wisdom, passing earthly lore,
As in their truth I grow.

Your words to me are full of joy,
Of beauty, peace, and grace;
From them I learn your blessed will,
Through them I see your face.

Your words are perfected in one,
Yourself, the living Word;
Within my heart your image print
In clearest lines, O lord.

George Currie Martin 1865-1937

Friday, August 27, 2010

Admonitions XXI - The Frivolous and the Talkataive Religious

Blessed is the servant who, when he speaks, does not disclose everything about himself under the guise of a reward and is not quick to speak, but who is wisely cautious about what he says and how he responds. (Pv 29:20)

Woe to that religious who does not hold in his heart the good things the Lord reveals to him and does not reveal them by his behavior, but, under the guise of a reward, wishes instead to reveal them with his words. He receives his reward and his listeners carry away little fruit. (Lk2:19, 51; MT 6:2,16)

Saint Francis of Assisi

Source: Francis of Assisi, The Saint, Early Documents published by New City Press

Thursday, August 26, 2010

Election of New Council

Our fraternity was canonically established on October 4, 2009, and the current council will soon complete their one year terms as required by the SFO constitution. 

At the October 2010 regular monthly fraternity gathering, we will elect a new council that will serve a three year term.  We are a large fraternity and our members have many talents.  We pray for the inspiration of the Holy Spirit as we proceed with the nominations for this new council.

Following is an election prayer our spiritual assistant, Sister Josephine Boyles, OSF, obtained from Cricket Aull, sfo.  Cricket was the dynamic retreat leader for the Juan de Padillia regional retreat held in Wichita, Kansas in June.

We ask our members to pray this prayer often as we prepare for the upcoming elections.


Oh my dear GOD, we pray for the guidance of your Most Holy Spirit as we review in our minds the personal attributes required by the various Council positions.

Illumine for us our own strengths, and those of our fellow members, that YOU may inspire us to recognize who it is YOU desire to serve YOUR fraternity.

Dear Francis, we also ask for your guidance as we seek a new Council. Lead us to those who will help us to grow in your virtues — humble, polite, peacemakers and ardent lovers of our Crucified Lord. Help each of us to discover "what is ours to do." Not our will Lord, but Thy will by one.  Amen

Wednesday, August 25, 2010


August 25
St. Louis IX, King, Patron of the Third Order

Louis was born April 25, 1214. He became king of France at the age of twelve years old when his father died in 1226. He was crowned king within the month at Reims cathedral. Because of Louis's youth, his mother ruled France as regent during his minority. His mother was determined that he be educated not only for the earthly kingdom, but for the kingdom of heaven. Several Franciscan friars were among his instructions and as a young king he joined the Third Order of Saint Francis.

He married at age the age of twenty and had eleven children to whom he gave excellent training. He was particularly noted for his spirit of penance and prayer and his love for the poor. In ruling his kingdom, he showed concern not only for the peace of his people but also for their spiritual welfare. He avoided all luxury at court so more help could be given to the poor. His wardrobe was simple as it fittingly could be and he wore the insignia of the Third Order under his outer garments. On special occasions he publicly wore the habit of the Tertiaries.

He went on two crusades, in his mid-30s in 1248 (Seventh Crusade) and then again in his mid-50s in 1270 (Eighth Crusade). He died near Carthage in the year 1270. Pope Boniface VIII proclaimed the canonization of Louis in 1297. He is the only French monarch to be declared a saint.

Friday, August 20, 2010


Blessed is the servant who endures discipline, accusation, and reprimand from another as patiently as he would from himself.

Blessed is the servant who, after being reprimanded, agrees courteously, submits respectfully, admits humbly, and makes amends willingly.

Blessed is the servant who is not quick to excuse himself, and endures with humility, shame, and reprimand for a sin, when he did not commit the fault.

Saint Francis of Assisi

Source: St. Francis of Assisi, The Saint, Early Documents, New City Press

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Cardinals, Blue Jays, and Crows

Avery Cardinal Dulles spent his life teaching in colllege. He live a long time. Or did it just seem to be along time.

Martin V. went from laity to Pope in one swoop.

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

I am not a saint

What do I need to do that I'm not doing to be a saint? That is what I need to do, isn't it? If I'm not trying to become a saint, exactly what am I doing? Practicing for Hell?

St. Roch Montpellier, Confessor, Third Order

August 17
St. Roch Montpellier, Confessor, Third Order

Roch, the only son of a wealthy nobleman in France who was governor of the town of Montpellier. His parents raised him in a devote manner, and upon the death of both parents when he was twenty years old, he sold all the personal property and distributed the proceeds among the poor. He transferred the ownership of the real estate this uncle. Once this was accomplished, he joined the Third Order of St. Francis and put on a pilgrim’s garb.

He intended to travel to Rome, but when he arrived in Northern Italy around 1315, he found an epidemic was ravaging the area. He did not fear for his life, but following the example of Christ and admonition of St. Francis, he offered his life in the service of his brethren in Christ. Serving day and night, he worked in the hospital of St. John filled with the plague stricken and visited individual home seeking the sick. God rewarded his heroic charity by causing many he tended to be cured at the mere Sign of the Cross Roch made over them. When the plague was over, Roch continued his journey to Rome.

In Rome he found and epidemic there too. Roch again devoted him self to the care of the sick and again many were miraculously cured by him. Eventually Roch became sick, and in the very hospital he had served the sick, he was looked upon as an intruder. So as not to be a burden, Roch left, dragging himself to the neighborhood woods. Finding an old hut he thanked God for the safety of the lodging. God also provided his nourishment by sending him bread by way of a neighborhood dog. When he recovered, he was divinely inspired to return to his home town.

War was raging in the area of his home town and he was thought to be a spy. He was led before his uncle, who did not recognize him in his emancipated state, and cast into prison. Roch said no word in his defense following Christ’s example and accepted in silence what heaven had ordained for him. Forgotten, he languished in prison for five years. Feeling the end near, he requested a priest come and administer the last sacraments. Upon entering, the priest found the prison to be supernaturally lighted and poor Roch surrounded with a special radiance. As death claimed Roch, a tablet appeared on the wall and an angelic hand wrote in golden letters the name of Roch and the prediction that all who invoked his intercession would be cured of the plague.

Informed of these events, Roch’s uncle and grandmother went to the prison and identified the dead man by the birthmark of the red cross on his breast. Roch was given a grand funeral and a church was built in his honor in which his body was entombed. His veneration was approved by several popes. Pope Urban VII canonized him.

Prayer of the Church:

O God, who granted to St. Roch the promise, which an angel recorded on a table, not to permit anyone who sought his intercession to be afflicted with a contagious disease, grant, we beseech Thee, that we, who celebrate his memory, may be preserved from every contagion of soul and body. Through Christ our Lord Amen.

Source: The Franciscan Book of Saints, Marion A. Habig, OFM, Franciscan Herald Press

Monday, August 16, 2010

Good Company - Doctors, Cardinals and Bishops of the Catholic

Following are Secular Franciscans that were Doctors, Cardinals and Bishops of the Catholic Church. May these men be an inspiration to us as we strive to live our Secular Franciscan profession.

Doctors of the Church:

St. Francis deSales


Charles Cardinal Borromeo
Henry Edward Cardinal Manning
Herbert Cardinal Vaughn
John Cardinal Fisher

Bishops: (Note that all Cardinals were formerly Bishops)
St. Francis deSales

St. Clare of Montefalco, Virgin, Third Order

August 16
St. Clare of Montefalco, Virgin, Third Order

Clare Damiani born about 1268 in Montefalco in Umbria north of Assisi was placed in the convent of St. Illuminata, where her sister Jane was superior. From the beginning she followed the rule of the Third Order of St. Francis.

Clare, who distinguished herself by her spirit of prayer and penance, was chosen superior in 1298. She was not only an exemplary superior, but she exerted influence on the outside world. She confronted heretics, converted sinners, reconciled families at odds, made peace between neighboring warring towns, drove out devils, foretold future events, healed the sick, raised the dead. During the latter part of her life, she also received the gifts of ecstasy and supernatural knowledge.

Our Lord, carrying His Cross, appeared to her and said: “I have been searching for a long time, daughter to find a firm and solid place on which to plant My Cross, and I have not found one more suitable than your heart. You must receive it and allow it to take root.” There is good evidence that when her heart was opened after her death, the Cross and other instruments of the Passion were found within, formed solidly in some fibrous tissue. For this reason she is also called St. Clare of the Cross.

Clare died August 17, 1308. Her incorrupt is in the church next to the Santa Croce convent. It also claimed that the miracle of liquefaction and ebullition of her blood has taken place.

Source: The Franciscan Book of Saints, Marion A. Habig, OFM, Franciscan Herald Press

Sunday, August 15, 2010

cranky blog misplaced

I can't figure out how to go to Cranky blog directly. (see below) This is frustrating. Now i must ward off profound attacks of petulance.

I will work this out. Probably.

Did you know?

Did you know that the parents of St. Maximilian Kolbe, whose feast day we celebrated on August 14, were Secular Franciscans?

Please help me find all the "really good" Catholic Websites

Please list all t he great websites. Ideally, make them Franciscan. Acceptably make them Catholic. At least make them Christian.

I will compile them some time soon and put them before you. I'll google to get them..Butr I need a name.

Why do Iwant them? Simple. I want to look at more stuff on web. If you share your favorite spots, we can all benefit. I'll list two or three to get us started:

1. Insight Scoop
3. That's St. Paul Center for Biblical Theology Scott Hahn
4. The Catholic Thing
5. Kansas Catholic
6. Cranky ( blog)

Tommy Augustine has returned to the building

I should likely repent. You see, I am guilty of not fulfilling a promise to help out on this blog. I promised, I pledged, I agreed. Then I got lost.

I hate it when people do that. Then, I did that. I was irresponsible. I was consistently unavailable. Got busy. Got distracted. Now Bonnie Venture has been very understanding. Franciscans are like that.

But I am shooting for more than forgiveness and/or understanding. I seek reconciliation. So, do me a favor. Keep track of whether I have been blogging or not. If I haven't posted, suggest I come in out of the cold.

I need to get some things said while that option still exists.

Some day when the mind-meld between Sodom on the Bay and everything East of the Beltway is firmly established, Franciscans--maybe all Catholics--maybe all Christians will be consigned to some Gulag somewhere.

Before that day comes, I must speak.

Monday, August 2, 2010

THE RULE - Chapter 3 - Life in Fraternity - 26

The Rule of the Secular Franciscan Order
Chapter 3 - Life In Fraternity

26.  As a concrete sign of communion and coresponsibility, the councils on various levels, in keeping with the constitutions, shall ask for suitable and well prepared religious for spiritual assistance. They should make this request to the superiors of the four religious Franciscan families, to whom the Secular Fraternity has been united for centuries.

To promote fidelity to the charism as well as observance of the rule and to receive greater support in the life of the fraternity, the minister or president, with the consent of the council, should take care to ask for a regular pastoral visit by the competent religious superiors as well as for a fraternal visit from those of the higher fraternities, according to the norm of the constitutions.

“May whoever observes all this be filled in heaven with the blessing of the most high Father, and on earth with that of his beloved Son, together with the Holy Spirit, the Comforter.”   Blessing of Saint Francis from the Testament.