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We Franciscans owe our inspiration to Francesco di Bernardone, an affluent young merchant from the Italian town of Assisi, who in 1206 renounced his wealth and social status in favor of a life dedicated to God and the least of God’s people. electricity videos for students Soon, other men and women joined him to begin a vast movement of Gospel renewal within the medieval Church.

Although St. Francis of Assisi began his life of penance as a hermit, devoting himself to prayer, working among lepers and rebuilding churches in the Assisi area, other men were soon attracted to his company. By 1209, there were 12 brothers, and so they approached Pope Innocent III to gain approval of their way of life “according to the Holy Gospel.” The Order of Lesser Brothers ( ordo fratrum minorum) — now formally known as the Order of Friars Minor — had begun.

The Gospel life of the Friars Minor, as Francis describes in our Rule, has four central components: first, to be men of prayer, “desiring above all things to have the Spirit of the Lord and its holy operation;” second, to live as lesser ones, “not making anything our own,” but serving the Lord in poverty and humility; third, to create a brotherhood of mutual care among ourselves, “showing we are members of the same family;” and fourth, to “go about the world” entering people’s everyday lives as heralds of God’s reign and agents of Gospel peace.

Close to the beginning of the order, St. Francis sent friars to France, Germany, Hungary, Spain and into the provinces of Italy where they had not been before. St. gas vs electric stove safety Francis, himself, went on a mission to Egypt and the Holy Land. The protomartyrs (first martyrs) of the order were killed while on a mission to Morroco during the lifetime of Francis. One of the first Christian missionaries to India and China was a Franciscan friar.

A most important characteristic of the missionary life of the friars is “to be subject to all creatures for the sake of God.” In the mind of Francis, this attitude is fundamental to Franciscan presence. The task of the friar minor is to make the divine quality of the gospel visible and credible by living an authentic Christian life. In doing so, the life of the Friar Minor makes people wonder: “Why are you like this?”

Who does not wonder at the man or woman who “goes about the world without quarreling or disputing or judging others” — “who is meek, peaceful, modest, gentle, humble and speaks courteously to everyone”? To those who inquire, the friar should answer as did Francis: “Because I am a Christian!” In this way, the prophetic presence of the Franciscan missionary nurtures the soil to receive the word. gas key bolt carrier When the friar perceives that the word will be welcomed, then he opens his mouth and heart to share his faith in the gospel of Jesus Christ.

The order has as its head the successor to St. Francis of Assisi called the minister general; each province is headed by a provincial minister, and each friary is headed by a guardian. St. Francis very deliberately selected these terms. electricity pictures information He specifically did not use the word superior. In our rule, Francis says that the friars “can speak to [their ministers] and act as lords with their servants; for so it should be, because the ministers are the servants of all the friars.”

A guardian is one who looks out for the friars, as Francis said, as a mother takes care of her children. A guardian animates the friars to live the Gospel in the manner that St. Francis lived it as described in our rule, offer them support in time of need, be an attentive ear when they need to talk, correct them when necessary, and ensure that the entire fraternity functions as one brotherhood.

The provincial ministers are elected by the friars in each province to serve for a term of six years. He can be re-elected for an additional three years. The minister general is elected by the provincial ministers to serve for six years. He can be re-elected to serve an additional six years. gas efficient suv 2008 Guardians are appointed by the provincial minister and his council to serve for a term of three years. At the end of their term, the ministers and guardians return to being simple friars, and new friars are elected to serve in their stead.