Dear Friends,

May the Lord give you peace.   On Sunday evening July 3rd the Franciscans of the Irish Franciscan Province will gather in Gormanston College, Co Meath to begin their

Provincial Chapter.   Please keep us in your prayers as we spend Sunday through Friday in session.

According to our General Constitutions Article 215:  “It is the responsibility of the Provincial Chapter to examine the present state of life and activity of the friars of the province, to search for and propose suitable means for its growth and improvement, to discuss and, by common council to decide on new undetakings and affairs of major importance, and to carry out elections.”

This might be a good time for us Irish Franciscans and indeed all of the Franciscan Family in Ireland to remember the words of our present Minister General Br. Jose Rodriguez Carballo O.F.M. in his report to the ‘Extraordinary General Chapter of the Order’ in 2006.   At that time we were preparing to celebrate the 800th anniversary of the verbal approval of our Rule, celebrated in 2009.

This is what our Brother Jose wrote:

“Dear Brothers:  Let us return to the Gospel, becuause to return to the Gospel is to return to Christ, the only one who can justify our life.   Let us return to the Gospel, because to return to the Gospel is to revive the grace of our origins.   Let us return to the Gospel and our life will recover the poetry, the beauty and the enchantment of the orgins.   Let us return to the Gospel and we will be rescued from our slavery, from our fears and sadness, and we will resuce our brother men from their miseries and slavery, from their fears and sadness.   Let us return to the Gospel and we will breathe pure air, and our proposals will be new, and the intelligence, courage, generosity and fidelity of many Friars, worn out, without reserves and withouth restoration will bear fruit, fruit in abundance.

All the efforts we are making to progress in re-founding our Order, all the reforms, all the efforts to accommodate the institutions to new situations, all that we are doing to incarnate the Priorities of the Order into everyday life, all these efforts would be worth nothing, would be sterile, if we were not to return to the Gospel.”  With Clarity and Audacity p.11

We rely on your prayers.   If you would like to know more about this body of men who are struggling to live the Gospel in the way of St. Francis of Assisi please do not hesitate to contact me at            

God bless you.