May the Lord give you peace! A few months ago, I was appointed Vocations Director of the Irish Franciscan Province. In this ministry I hope to promote the Franciscan vocation here in Ireland and to animate a culture of vocation in our friaries. A culture of vocation means creating an awareness that all people are called to holiness, according to the teaching of scripture: “This is the will of God: your sanctification” (1 Th. 4:3).
Within the innumerable paths to holiness within the Church, the Franciscan way of life is a particular calling. God has called many men and women to follow in the footsteps of Christ, after the example of Francis of Assisi, in community, in simplicity, joyfully and without anything of their own.
To live the Franciscan way of life today is both a challenge and a gift!
We draw on a rich tradition of spirituality, prayer and theological reflection. We stand in a stream of history that includes great Franciscan missionaries, martyrs, preachers, peace-makers, poets, confessors, gardeners and cooks, bishops and theologians, doctors and scientists, builders and sweepers. Franciscan brothers can been found lecturing in universities and sitting at kitchen tables, or firesides or hospital beds. Since the early thirteenth century, the friars have been going out, preaching Jesus Christ and the joy and freedom of His Gospel in a multitude of places and ways. Does this way of life appeal to you?
Within our communities there are brothers of different abilities and gifts. St. Francis reminded the friars that each brother is gift to the community. Living not in rivalry but delighting in each other’s gifts is our goal. We discover our vocation, our true self in fraternity, in brotherhood. The present Covid 19 restrictions have curtailed us all, but through the online world we continue to reach out, inviting others to join our fraternity in which Christ is the centre and the goal of our lives.
If you have stumbled upon this blog, perhaps you are already thinking about the Franciscan vocation? Perhaps you know someone who is searching for direction in their life at this time? Maybe now is the time to take the first step and make contact…If so contact us at the email address below:
Or by phone on: 087 3960262.
Wishing you the traditional Franciscan blessing of “Peace and all good!”
Friar Liam, OFM.