(This article originally appeared in the TAU-USA Fall Issue #104)

2021 NAFRA Chapter and National Elections

The 2021 NAFRA Chapter will be held virtually October 26-31, 2021. Given the decision to hold the Chapter virtually, the National Elections needed to be rescheduled. The National Fraternity Council considered several choices, including spring or summer of 2022. A vote was taken, and our National Elections will now take place at our annual 2022 NAFRA Chapter, Oct. 11–16, in Detroit, Mich. Nominees currently on the slate will be notified of this decision. Nominations will reopen in the spring of 2022, and all those nominated for 2021 will again be contacted as part of the usual nominations process.

800 Year Anniversary of Memoriale Propositi

CIOFS announced 2021 as the year-long celebration of the 800th Anniversary of Memoriale Propositi. The OFS- USA will celebrate this anniversary throughout 2021 and, due to the postponement of the Quinquennial Congress, we will continue to celebrate this anniversary in 2022, closing with a grand finale at the Q in August of 2022.

Guide to Canonical Establishment of a Secular Franciscan Fraternity

The Guide was issued ad experimentum earlier this year and can be found on our website. In July we held a national discussion to receive comments and answer questions. We are now working on a few edits, and will notify you when the updated version is posted.

OFS-USA Website News

We have now added a news feed to the national website. From the main menu, click on News, and select Latest News. We are also happy to announce that Sharon Winzeler, OFS, is the new chair of the Website Committee. We recently added two new members to the Website Committee, bringing the total to seven members.

Accessibility Committee

We welcome the members of our new Accessibility Committee! This committee’s goal is to improve access for our members in all areas of communication, and at fraternity gatherings at every level, providing help with what is needed for those with hearing, vision, and mobility challenges. (See related article in this issue of TAU-USA).

Quinquennial Congress – Registration is Open Now

Please do not wait to register for the 2022 Quinquennial Congress, the Early Bird discount ends on December 31, 2021.

 As of August 30, there were more than 100 persons already registered. There’s room for many, many more! For more information see the related article in this issue of TAU-USA. If you need assistance or have questions, just email the Q Committee at ofsusa.qcongress@gmail.com

New Initial Formation Texts: Project Update

Although the Formation Vision Team has been working hard on the new initial formation texts, this project has proved to be much larger and more involved than we first anticipated. There is currently no update on when these texts will be completed.

A note from the National Minister: “I believe the Holy Spirit has brought together a great team to work on these new formation texts. Like many servant leaders, the Visioning Team members wear many hats and have many responsibilities. The fact that members of this team are involved in so many other aspects of our Order is also a gift. The experience they bring to this project is so important. These new texts will be a wonderful step forward for our Order, and this project is near and dear to my heart. Please pray for the team and for the success of this project. During our National Visioning gatherings several years ago, it was noted, “the vision will have its time.” I truly believe that. We go forward, trusting in God’s perfect timing.”

“Write down the vision clearly upon the tablets, so that one can read it readily. For the vision still has its time, presses on to fulfillment, and will not disappoint. If it delays, wait for it, it will surely come, it will not be late.” (Habakkuk 2:2-3) 

The Vision Team members are Mary Bittner, Justin Carisio, Francine Gikow, Layna Maher, Diane Menditto, Anne Mulqueen, Jan Parker, and Mary Stronach.

TAU Publishing Update – Fraternity Registers and More

TAU Publishing is no longer able to publish hard cover books, and this includes our OFS Fraternity Registers. Currently, OFS Registers are not available, but we are looking for a new publisher. TAU Publishing is also no longer printing the Franciscan Federation’s Franciscan Morning and Evening Praise. The Federation is looking at options to make this popular prayer book available. Lastly, For All the Saints: St. Francis’s Five Point Plan for Salvation by Tom Bello is still available through TAU Publishing.

Let us live a life worthy of our call.