Publication Name
TAU-INFO
Vol. 15 - No. 1 - March

Period
March

 


Year
2003

Volume
15

 


Number
1

 


MAKE ME A CHANNEL OF YOUR PEACE

PEACE

The whole world is yearning for PEACE; some use weapons of war to try to obtain peace. We can read how some of our brothers and sisters through the Congregation of the Mission Sisters of Ajmer (India) celebrated a Vigil for the 21st September last year.

The superior general, Sr. Michelle Pereira, writes: The Day of Peace Vigil was observed in 28 of our Houses and Institutions. Different houses observed it in different ways. Some observed 24 hours of Prayer and fasting. Others had interreligious prayer meetings, a peace pilgrimage or a peace rally. Some of the schools had special assemblies based on the theme of 'peace'. Role plays and skits were enacted showing conflicts, forgiveness and restoration of peace. Scenes from the lives of peace-loving people such as Mahatma Gandhi, Nelson Mandela, Mother Teresa were also enacted. The Peace Prayer (attributed to St Francis) was recited. Peace stickers were distributed to the students. Trees were planted to show willingness to work for the preservation of our sister, Mother Earth. The photo shows a play enacted by our schools".

Thank you, Sister Michelle; this may give ideas to others who are striving for peace in our world.

*

ECUMENISM

In our last issue of Tau-Info, you will have seen a picture of six members of the Third Order Regular present in Fonte Colombo on the eve of the 20th anniversary of the updated Rule of the TOR. That visit to Fonte Colombo was part of the Franciscan Interreligious pilgrimage of which we give you a short account below:

From December 2-7, 2002, a Franciscan Interreligious Dialogue was held in Rome and Assisi. Approximately 30 Franciscans representing the Catholic, Anglican and Lutheran Churches participated at the invitation of the OFM Friars and the Atonement Fathers. Sisters Carola Thomann, Celine Monteiro and Marcia Lunz represented the IFC-TOR.



Photo:
(left to right) Sr. Carola Thomann, Sr. Celine Monteiro, Sr. Marcia Lunz

In the course of pilgrimaging together and sharing in prayer and dialogue, the participants learned from one another, formed personal relationships and committed themselves to working for future Franciscan ecumenical encounters in order to deepen the dialogue.

The programme featured presentations throughout the week. Some of these were:

Dominic Monti OFM - "From which situation and from which needs was the Franciscan movement begun by St. Francis?"
Margaret Carney OSF - "The Feminine Aspect of Franciscanism"
Maurice Carmody OFM - "Reflection on the 'Rule of St. Francis'"
Austin Davis SSF - "Introduction to the 'Principles of Life.'"

A Round Table discussion featured personal testimonies of Franciscan Life by Arthur Johnson SA, Maureen Pike CSF, Benedict Winsper SSF, and Margaret Carney OSF.

The Poor Clares in Albano hosted us for discussion and prayer. They were very interested in the nature and purpose of our dialogue and were praying for its success. The group prayed with the Friars at the OFM General Curia in Rome and experienced their hospitality for meals in Rome. The friars at St. Mary of the Angels in Assisi and at La Verna each hosted a meal for the group.

During the week both Catholic and Anglican liturgies were celebrated. The liturgy of the Hours, prayer services and silent prayer were also scheduled. At La Verna, the group took part in the praying of the liturgical hour of "None" and the procession to the Chapel of the Stigmata.

In Assisi, La Verna and the Rieti valley, the heritage and history of the lives of Francis and Clare were recalled by Friars steeped in Franciscan knowledge. At San Damiano, the Bishop of Assisi welcomed the group.

On the last day of the programme, the participants recommended that a report be given to the Conference of the Franciscan Family (CFF) [Ministers General of the OFM, OFM Capuchins, OFM Conventuals, Third Order Regular (TOR), the President of the IFC-TOR, and the General Minister of the Secular Franciscan Order (SFO)] to endorse another Franciscan Ecumenical Meeting. In addition, each participant will work personally at his or her local level to create awareness of the ecumenical dimension of the Franciscan family.

Fr. Stefano Ottenbreit OFM and Fr. Giacomo Puglisi SA were responsible for the organisation of the Dialogue experience. Sr. Allesandro SA assisted with arrangements and hospitality in Assisi.

*

Itinerant School - Brazil
5 - 19 January 2003

From 5 o'clock in the morning of the 5th January 2003, and during the whole day, we, Franciscans of the TOR, arrived from every corner of Brazil, to participate in the Itinerant School on the Rule and Life of the Sisters and Brothers of the Third Order Regular, at Hidrolândia near Gioiânia, Goiàs, in the geographical heart of Brazil. Being of twenty seven different congregations, of a total of 50 participants (49 Sisters and one Brother) and 4 speakers, we formed an animated and involved group. The richness of our differences of origin was expressed immediately through regional differences of language and diversity of ways in prayer, song and dance. But something united us very closely: the following of Jesus Christ, poor, in the path of Francis and Clare of Assisi and the desire to deepen our reflection on the Rule and Life of the TOR, above all because one cannot live something that one does not know.

Since the majority of the participants work or will work in the formation of young members of their congregations, this study is even more opportune, relevant and important. That is why many sacrificed their holidays to be able to participate in this meeting.

The first days were dedicated to deepening the principal themes of Franciscan Theology, that is: the Incarnation, the Trinity, the Eucharist and Creation. Fr. Luis Carlos Suzin, O.F.M. Cap. directed this study and alternated his interesting and clear talks with songs that he himself had composed. From the afternoon of the 4th day till the 19th, the group was directed alternately by Sr. Lenita de Argollo Mendes, FB, Maria Luiza Piva, CF and Terezinha Antônia Sotopietra, CF who helped us study the various chapters of the Rule of the Sisters and Brothers of the Third Order Regular of Saint Francis.

To better understand the text and the meaning of each chapter of our Rule and Life, it was necessary to study the Franciscan history and thought a little bit, in order to be able to insert the text in its context. The speakers knew how to encourage participation from our part with much creativity, and alternated their clear explanations with group work, leading us to share our knowledge and above all, our experiences. We also had the opportunity for individual reflection and prayer. The liturgy was prepared and realised with creativity and was the expression of our diverse experiences of life in the same following of the poor Christ.

However, our meeting did not consist merely of prayer and study. We had the opportunity to visit the 'Sanctuary of the Eternal Father' in Trinità near Goiânia, where we participated in the Eucharist with the pilgrims which reminded us that itinerancy is a strong characteristic and commitment of Franciscans. On our return we made a tour of the town of Goiânia, because the majority among us did not know this town. Twice we participated in the Eucharist with the local community of Hidrolândia which was preparing for the feast of Saint Sebastian their patron by a novena. On one of these occasions we accompanied, by our participation, a big group of deaf and dumb people who were assisted by two young interpreters who explained all that was happening during the Mass through sign language. This reminded us of another great Franciscan value: poverty and fraternity which takes place through our relationships and our capacity for communication. During another Mass with the people we heard songs in 'sertanejo'

Our whole meeting was characterised by fraternity and joy which distinguishes Franciscans. During moments of the liturgy, at meals time, during games and recreation we were able to openly express joviality and joy, reminding us of the dear children of the Father, brothers of Jesus Christ and spouses of the Holy Spirit.

We can affirm that this meeting was a precious opportunity of reviving ourselves, of learning, of exchanging experiences and of fraternal life. For this reason, we wish to thank the International Franciscan Conference of the Third Order Regular which gave us the possibility to participate in this meeting; the team of speakers who led us in study and reflection; our Congregations who freed us to be able to have this ongoing formation and the community of Capuchin Friars of the Cultural Centre F. Leopoldo Mandic who welcomed us so graciously. To all our 'big thanks!'


Hidrolândia 19the January 2003.
Sisters Paula Krindges and Júlia Engel,

Franciscans of Ingolstadt.

Family News

The "Istituto delle Religiose Francescane di S. Antonio" in Ariccia (near Rome) had the joy of introducing the Cause of Canonisation of its foundress, Mother Miradio della Provvidenza and celebrated the event on 1st and 2nd February 2003.
On 26th April 2003, the "Congregação das Irmãs Franciscanas de Nossa Senhora do Bom Conselho" will celebrate 150 years of their foundation in Brazil by a Capuchin Friar, Caetano de Messina. We send them our good wishes and prayers that they may contribute to spreading the Kingdom through living their charism in fidelity to the Church.

Changes:

Sr. Brigitte Gölles has replaced Sr. Julia Gombotz as superior general of the "Franziskanerinnen von der Unbefleckten Empfängnis" Congregation.

Sr. Marie Makhlouf
has replaced Sister Rita Rouhana as superior general of the "Franciscaines de la Croix du Liban".

Sr. M. Theophila Kilgenstein
was elected superior general of the "Franziskanerinnen von Maria Stern" at their general chapter in June 2002.

The "Congregação das Irmãs Franciscanas do Sagrado Coração de Jesus" elected Irmã Jesumina Borges de Toledo as their superior general at their General Chapter held in July 2002.

Sr. Elena Giacometti
was elected superior general of the "Ancelle Francescane del Buon Pastore" at their general chapter in August 2002.

Sr. Irene C. Anapi
has replaced Sr. Agnes Cabote as superior general of the "Franciscan Apostolic Sisters" in the Philippines.
In November, the "Zusters Franciscanessen Oirschot" changed their generalate house from the Netherlands to Brazil.
Their new address is:

Casa Geral,
Rua Rio Espera 65, Carlos Prates,
30710.260 Belo Horizonte MG, Brazil
and their new superior general is Irmã Valéria Botelho de Aguilar.

The "Franciscaines Orantes de Marie Médiatrice" have a new superior general in the person of Sister Marie-Yvonne Meyer.
Sister Ann Carville is the new General Superior of the "Sisters of Saint Francis of Milvale"

"Misioneras Franciscanas de N.S. de la Paz"
have a slight change in their postal address: The P.O. Box number is: 432453 and 'San Diego' is changed to 'San Ysidro'.

Sister Margaret Mary Kimmins, General Superior of the "Franciscan Sisters of Allegany" has the following e-mail address: fsaalleg@ernet.net

Sister Elaine Morzone, General Superior of the "Francescane Missionarie dell'I.C. de Maria" has changed her e-mail address to: elaine@mficgen.it

The e-mail address of "Franciscanessen van Dongen" is changed to: congregatie@2dongen.nl