Rule 4 - The rule and life of the Secular Franciscans is this: to observe the gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ by following the example of Saint Francis of Assisi, who made Christ the inspiration and the centre of his life with God and people.
This paragraph of the Rule embraces my vision of life as a Secular Franciscan. Even now, after years as a Franciscan, it thrills me to read it and to realise ever more deeply its implications. At a recent Archdiocesan Assembly, I was asked, "Just who are Secular Franciscans?" It was easy to talk about St Francis but then I recalled that he was always pointing the way to Jesus. This was Francis' life, not only to be like Jesus but also to let Jesus live again in Francis’ life, to be the eyes, heart, hands and feet of Jesus.
Seeing God, with love and reverence, in every aspect of Creation, “My God and my All” truly demonstrates his whole-hearted relationship with the Divine. Francis is my model, my inspiration in this total love for God and I strive daily to deepen my own relationship with God through meditation and prayer - and a growing awareness of Jesus' presence in those I meet. Particularly important to me is the effort to not merely tolerate, but to lovingly accept others' beliefs and struggles. Perhaps this is partly due to my non-Catholic background but also, I think, largely due to Francis’ influence on my life.
Contact: Jack Smith: phone 61-2-62583824 fax 61-2-62583151 email@example.com