(This article originally appeared in the TAU-USA Fall 2023 Issue #110)
By Sharon Winzeler, OFS
Vickie Klick, OFS and Terri Leone, OFS
Vickie Klick, OFS, chair of the Centenary Task Force, led an activity focusing on the four-year Franciscan Centenary Celebration. The focus of the year 2023 is the Rule and Christmas at Greccio, 2024 will be the Gift of the Stigmata, 2025 the Canticle of the Creatures, and 2026 the Easter of Francis of Assisi.
Chapter attendees had an opportunity to participate in an exercise focusing on the Rule of the Secular Franciscan Order. The attendees worked in pairs to discuss questions focusing on the life of St. Francis of Assisi. The goal of the activity was for the participants to better understand how living the Rule, builds relationships between sisters and brothers.
“The questions provide opportunities for us to be transformed. We apply the questions to our lives, share with others and grow deeper and closer as Franciscans,” Vickie said.
“These are questions that recognize that we come to the Order by different paths, but the reason we are here is part of the lens that shows how we understand and focus on our way of life. With Francis, we learn about his conversion experiences. Something happened in your life that made you think you needed something more. What was that?” she asked.
Vickie talked about her admission to the Catholic Church on Christmas Eve in 1982 and her profession in 1985. She explained, “I was looking for fraternity. I needed to be with other people who shared my beliefs.”
Animated conversations could be heard throughout the exercise as fraternity members were eager to share their experiences. The questions in this module relate to fraternity, the Rule, and living the Gospel life. Prayers for Fraternal Life are also included in the formation series.
This activity and others that relate to the Franciscan Centenary Celebration can be found in the Centenary section of the Secular Franciscan website under “Activities and Prayer Resources” near the bottom left of the page.
“And whoever observes these things let him be blessed in Heaven with the blessing of the Most High Father, and on earth with the blessing of His Beloved Son with the Most Holy Spirit the Paraclete”
(Blessing of St Francis found in The Testament of Francis)