Secular Franciscan Order: Holy Spirit Fraternity
Canberra ACT Australia
July Meeting. Our next meeting is at 8pm on Friday 25 July and will again be held in the Marian Hall at St Matthew's Page. Cec has not been well but we hope that he will lead us in consideration of how we might, as a Fraternity, apply our own special Franciscan charism to preparation for the Jubilee Year of 2000. Loui will substitute for Cec, if Cec can't make it.
St Clare Region Newsletter. The second newsletter for 1997 is now available and is enclosed with this 'Canberra Franciscan' for members of the Fraternity. Please note the dates announced:
August 9 at Plumpton: Fr Patrick Colbourn ofm Cap on "Concept of Poverty".
September 27 at Campbelltown: Fr Dan Naylon ofm on: "Brotherhood in St Francis".
Pam hopes to get to Fr Dan's talk at Campbelltown. You might speak to her if you are interested in attending.
August Meeting. Council will invite Jim Cronly ofm Cap to join us for the August meeting and lead us in a topic of his choice.
September Meeting. As previously advised, it is planned to have our September meeting in the form of a "Pot Luck" dinner from 6 to 7pm followed by an Evening of Quiet Reflection focussed by a tape of Sr Joanne (Poor Clare). It may be held at Cec's place which has plenty of nooks and crannies for quiet reflection.
Secular Franciscan Gathering. Don't forget the St Clare Region Minister and Executive are BEGGING us to join them in a Secular Franciscan gathering at Corowa on the Murray river on the weekend of 14-16 November.
Apologies. Hélène is back from Vanuatu. She has some hair-raising tales of her visit to China. We will have to wait to hear of her experiences. She plans to be here for the September meeting and the Transitus. Perhaps we will hear about it then. She will be away for the August meeting visiting Lababia in PNG (2 hours by boat from Lae) and Tari in the Mendi Diocese; visiting the ofm Caps there. She does not know yet if she will still be here for the July meeting.
As before, Kathy has tendered her apologies for the July and August meetings. On Monday 14 July, we had a message from Marion Clorey which reads as follows:
"We spoke to Cathy last night. Now that she's in Edmonton she's a bit closer but still too far away to visit. She is going back to Omaha later so I think a trip to Eastern Canada is out this time round. She asked me to extend fraternal greetings to you and fraternity members."
Kathy can be contacted until 12 September at: #402, 8728 103rd Street, Edmonton, T6E 6K3, Alberta, Canada.
Pam has tendered her apologies for the July meeting because she will be away.
Vocations. Remember that we agreed to keep up our prayers for vocations to the SFO!
National Levy. Loui has now forwarded the levy for 1997. If you are one of the few members that his records suggest have not paid the $20 yet, there will a reminder slip with this 'Canberra Franciscan'. Some others will find a receipt enclosed.
Towards 2000. In preparation for the July meeting, it may be useful to reflect on the thoughts of Emerenziana Rossato. Here is the text of the Minister General's message. Other articles on the SFO approach to the advent of the third millenium are available on the World Wide Web at http://ofs.it/topics.html#m for those with Internet access.
We are walking towards 2000 and time going by hides the treasures God wants to grant to men.
Treasures that strengthen faith, assist in sorrows, suggest intentions.
The time we are living bears difficulties and problems, chances and meanings, opportunities to take and positions to adopt.
The end of modernity, the overcoming of the industrial society, the achievements of information technologies sway men from recognising themselves in God's hands.
We are called to be a part of such a society with consistency of evangelical life, a challenge requiring from each one: spiritual insight, capability to make choices and give signs, bravery to become proposing strength, grow as a symbol of salvation and gift, good leaven in the history of our time.
Our Fraternities too are called to become a sign of unity so that the world do believe, yeast of Christ to repair the torn Christian tissue of our society, to prepare for sharing goods, for permanently being a site where close logic is overcome and for an open place with broad horizons.
I think it is time for Franciscans obeying to "go and repair..." to adopt the directives of the Conference of the Franciscan Family on the 2000 Jubilee and to offer ourselves to the Church in which we operate becoming a part of the ordinary pastoral, expressing our prophetic and charismatic presence at best, to avoid getting exhausted within ourselves and our circles.
As a consequence we must look at the situation inside and outside the Fraternity to improve it with concrete projects, significant restoring interventions, and offer to the eyes of the Church and the world suitable behaviour models.
This will also help improving the whole SFO image, living the membership, sharing the lot in the changing time conditions, which is something different from preserving the existing situation.
Such a commitment requires determination and faith motivations and, in turn, it offers more meaning and consideration to our presence in the Church and in the world.
The Pope says that going towards the Jubilee is like a prolonged session of spiritual exercises to be followed as pilgrims of peace, in the purification of memory, along the path of forgiveness, relieving the pains of many brothers, appealing to one's own conscience face to face with God.
This way should be followed by each one of us in line with the Seraphic Father's example and the love towards Him we live for.
Next Council Meeting: 8pm Wednesday 13 August at Jack's place.
Comments to: firstname.lastname@example.org