May the Lord give you peace! As we approach the Feast of St. Francis of Assisi I reflect on a question that I’m often asked: ‘Why do ‘ ordinary guys in 2019’ join the Franciscans? I guess one of the answers to this question stems from the fact that Francis of Assisi the Founder of the Franciscan Order was a very ‘ordinary guy’, a guy of his time who simply left everything and followed Jesus. Here is how Friar Thomas of Celano Francis’ first biographer described that ‘ordinary guy’, that guy of his time: “Francis passed his time almost up the twenty fifth year of his life, maliciously advancing beyond all his peers in vanities who proved himself a more excessive inciter of evil and a zealous imitator of foolishness. He was an object of admiration to all, and he endeavored to surpass others in his flamboyant display of vain accomplishments: wit, curiosity, practical jokes and foolish talk, songs and soft and flowing garments. Since he was very rich, he was not greedy but extravagant, not a hoarder of money but a squanderer of his property, a prudent dealer but a most unreliable steward. He was nevertheless, a rather kindly person, adaptable and quite affable, even though it made him look foolish.”
Whilst the four young men pictured below might not be described in such a manner – they are young men of 2019 who gave up a lot to follow their dream – to follow Jesus, in the footsteps of St. Francis of Assisi. They are and were just ‘ORDINARY GUYS’ who heard God call and who like St. Francis responded to that call. Philip worked in Tesco’s, Damian was a teacher, Daraigh was a student, a musician and a bit of an all rounder and Ronan was a Civil Engineer. If you are considering a Vocation to the Franciscan Way of Life and you are saying to yourself “I’m just an ORDINARY GUY’ maybe this is the Way of Life for you. If you think this might be so why not make contact with me at email@example.com and I will get back to you as soon as possible.
God bless and keep you as you celebrate the FEAST OF ST FRANCIS OF ASSISI on OCTOBER 4th.
Pat Lynch OFM