Reflections on the Wisdom from St. Francis
by Fr. Bobby
"Wherever we are, in every place, at every hour...let us magnify and give thanks to the Most High and Supreme eternal God, Trinity and Unity." Earlier Rule, Chapter 23
Elijah encountered the awe inspiring presence of God in a "tiny whispering sound." Our Lady always pondered that same presence "keeping these things in her heart." Francis of Assisi learned from both of them that what is most important is to be attentive to the presence of God in our everyday lives and to seek always to do God's will even in the smallest things. This is why time for silence and prayer are so important for human beings, because it is so easy to be distracted. Francis loved the company of other people, but he purposely spent times as a hermit so he would not forget the presence of God and would be open to making Christ the center of his universe. This became even more important as Francis became better known and popular as a preacher. He was tempted to listen to his own voice, rather than God's, so he would go to a mountain and ask, "Who are You, and who am I?" God answered him in a tiny whispering sound in his heart, and then Francis, like Mary his mother, would go forth to proclaim "the greatness of the Lord." May our Mother, whose Assumption we celebrate this week, help us to know the goodness of God and share that goodness with others.
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.