Reflections on the Wisdom from St. Francis
by Fr. Bobby
"May we be able to follow in the footprints of Your beloved Son, our Lord Jesus Christ, and so make our way to You, Most High, who live and rule in perfect Trinity and simple Unity, and are glorified, God Almighty, forever and ever." (Letter to the Whole Order, final prayer)
Francis knew that following Jesus was not a matter of merely imitating Jesus in this world. Jesus Christ came to lead us into true life, into the very heart of God. Thus Francis lived very aware of the Holy Trinity and the manifold ways God is present to us, and calls us to be related to Him. When God looks at us, it is with a love we can never understand, but it is a love radiating from His love of the Son, the Word made flesh. Francis tells us in his A dmonitions: "Consider, O human being, in what great excellence the Lord God has placed you, for He created and formed you to the image of His beloved Son according to the body and to His likeness according to the Spirit." Because we are made in God's image and likeness we are called to do the same thing God does, to love with all our being. That is what Francis strove to do, and why he could keep his perspective while experiencing the ins and outs of human life.
Fr. Robert Barbato, OFM Cap, is the Vicar and Student Director at St. Conrad Friary–Capuchin House of Studies in Berkeley.
As Capuchin Franciscans we follow St. Francis of Assisi as brothers, living the Gospel in prayer, fraternity and ministry, witnessing simply to Jesus Christ and the Church as a joyful presence of hope and salvation to all, especially to those most in need.
PRAYER - Rooted in our Capuchin contemplative tradition and expressed in many forms
As followers of St. Francis, desiring to be conformed more perfectly to the crucified and risen Christ
- We affirm that our prayer is rooted in our Capuchin contemplative tradition and is expressed in many forms.
- We seek to witness both personally and communally to affective prayer.
- We seek to become a living prayer and joyful presence to draw others to Christ.
FRATERNITY - Rooted in mutual love, humble reverence and respect for one another and for all people
We Capuchins are friars minor, rooted in mutual love, humble reverence and respect for one another and for all people.
- Individually and communally, we commit ourselves to be in greater solidarity with the poor.
- We manifest a compassionate caring attitude toward one another as brothers.
- We affirm, animate, support and encourage the building of community.
MINORITY - Following the meek and humble Christ and sharing our joy as lesser brothers by walking with people of every social condition
As brothers of St. Francis, we faithfully follow the meek and humble Christ.
- We cultivate a disposition of humility and respect of the dignity of others.
- We share our joy as lesser brothers by walking with people of every social condition and by being instruments of reconciliation.
- We commit ourselves to the evaluation of our lifestyle, both individually and communally.