Why Third Order Regular Franciscan Communities Gather 500 Strong

by Sister Julie Ann on July 29, 2011

Franciscan Sisters of Christian Charity are present this week at the National Franciscan Federation Conference in Milwaukee, WI to focus on the Johnine Praxis of Franciscan Life: “Holding on to the Words, the Life, the Teaching and the Holy Gospel of Jesus”.

Franciscan Sisters of Christian Charity were music ministers for the Franciscan Federation's National Conference July 27, 2011 Eucharistic Liturgy which brought together 500 participants in Milwaukee, WI.

As St. Francis and St. Clare connected Gospel and life as penitents in their world, keynote speakers Father Michael Blastic OFM and Sister Nancy Schreck, OSF, called us sisters and brothers living the Third Order Regular Rule  of St. Francis to do the same in our world. Francis’s meditation on John’s Chapter 17 reinforced and nurtured Francis’ own experience of mission calling him to have mercy with lepers and to begin a life of penance by following the footsteps of Jesus.

In the writings of Francis more than half the expressions and images that refer to Christ are derived from John:  the Servant who washes feet, the Lamb, the Good Shepherd, the Word of the Father, Light, the Way, Truth and Life. 

The following of Christ for Francis and Clare consisted in living a life that is always guided by the Spirit of the Lord.  In his Letter to the Entire Order Francis emphasized that we cannot follow Christ unless we are “…inwardly cleansed, enlightened, and inflamed by the fire of the Holy Spirit.”  After listening to the Word, we become the Word by being awake to God’s presence in and around us. We are moved to action bringing the flame of God’s love to others.

Conference theme–Becoming a Sacred Flame: Francis, Clare and John’s Gospel!

7 thoughts on “Why Third Order Regular Franciscan Communities Gather 500 Strong”

  1. Meghan says:

    I think one of my fellow inquirers in an SFO here in DC is speaking (or at least attending) at the conference! His name is Lonnie. It looks like you all are having a wonderful time!

  2. Sister Anne Marie Lom says:

    What great pictures to capture the theme of the conference. Thank you for sharing some content and some inspiration with others.

  3. Would he be someone who takes a lot of pictures? I didn't have the blessing to meet anyone by that name.  Time was precious and focused on Eucharist preparations.

  4. Skathleen says:

    I love the art work.  It's so expressive and full of life!  Brother fire is at work among us!  I'm sure proud of our community's contribution to this gathering!  Sing on!

  5. sannette says:

    How good is it that our Sisters attended and some were able to share their music ministry at the Franciscan Federation's National Conference. We are proud to be your Sisters! The flame table center piece was clever. I'm sure the conference was inspiring. Blessings!

  6. Kay Klackner says:

    The conference was wonderful!  What energy is released from 500 Franciscans listening and praying together!  It's awesome!

  7. Marcolette Madden says:

    It was an honor to attend the conference and have the opportunity to reflect on “Becoming a Sacred Flame: Francis, Clare and John's Gospel.”  I also enjoyed witnessing the historic moment Thursday morning when representatives from Franciscans International and the Franciscan Action Network signed an agreement to work in close collaboration.

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