29 days till the BIRTH of CHRIST,
and 4 days till the beginning of the ADVENT season.
“HO, HO , HO-ly God, We Praise Thy Name!”
Quote of the Day:
The good Lord didn’t create anything without a purpose, but mosquitoes come close.
The Canticle of the Sun by Francis of Assisi (day 9 of 14):
… Be praised, my Lord [Jesus], through our sister Mother Earth, who feeds us and rules us, and produces various fruits with colored flowers and herbs. …
On reading this, I can’t help but think of the beautiful stories of creation from Genesis. I picture God making all creation, and then strolling through the garden, with Adam & Eve. With an easy conversation between the three of them; they are lightly touching the plants, and stroking the heads and backs of the animals: the three of them smiling and laughing at the majesty and beauty of what God had created for us.
God created all the animals and plants for our use. It disappoints me that most humans abuse this gift, and responsibility. We are slowly destroying our resources, and I believe God is not happy. He will not stop us though, because He gave us a ‘free will.’ The quote, “It’s not nice to fool Mother Nature'” is true.
I pray we learn from our mistakes and selfishness. Please Lord, help us to find our way to be good stewards of this precious gift you gave us – the earth, and its resources. Amen.
The full text of “The Canticle of the Sun” can be found at many web sites
Pax et Bonum
Dan Halley, SFO
Franciscan Saint of the Day: Bl. Elizabeth of Reute, virgin, III Ord
Elizabeth was a member of the Third Order of St. Francis, born 25 November, 1386, at Waldsee in Swabia, of John and Anne Acheer; died 25 November, 1420.
From her earliest days “the good Betha”, as she was called, showed a rare piety. When fourteen she received the habit of the third order, but continued to live at home. Finding the life uncongenial, she secured the consent of her parents after long entreaties to leave home. Receiving no support from them she remained at the house of a pious tertiary, and the two worked at weaving; but the remuneration was small and they frequently suffered from hunger and other privations. After three years Conrad Kugelin established a house for tertiaries at Reute on the outskirts of Waldsee and Elizabeth entered it together with some others.
Here she took up her work in the kitchen, and now began her wonderful life of seclusion, fasting, and prayer. There was no clausura at the convent, still she led so retired a life that she was called “the Recluse.” She spent many hours in a little garden, kneeling on a stone or prostrate on the ground in contemplation. So pure was her life that her confessor could scarcely find matter for absolution. She had much to suffer from attacks of the evil spirit, from suspicions of her sisters in religion, from leprosy, and other sicknesses, but in all her trials she showed a heavenly patience. This she learned from the Passion of Christ, which she made the continual subject of meditation, the object of her love, and the rule of her life.
In consequence God permitted her to bear the marks of the Passion on her body; her head often showed the marks of the Thorns, and her body those of the Scourging. The stigmata appeared only now and then, but her pains never ceased. She was shown the happiness of the blessed and the souls in the state of purgation; the secrets of hearts and of the future were unveiled to her.
She foretold the election of Martin V and the end of the Western Schism. Though so much favoured by Divine Providence she always preserved a great humility. After her death she was buried in the church of Reute. Her life was written by her confessor and sent to the Bishop of Constance, but it was only after 1623, when her tomb was opened by the provost of Waldsee, that her popular veneration spread in Swabia. After several miracles had been wrought through her intercession the Holy See was asked to ratify her cult. This was done 19 June, 1766, by Clement XIII. The Franciscans celebrate her feast on 25 November. (from Catholic Encyclopedia). Please note that many Tertiaries in those days lived together in a fashion similar to a convent or monastery. Even in Europe until the mid-1950’s, these community houses existed, at least in the Netherlands /FSS.
(From http://www.franciscan-sfo.org website)
Secular Franciscan Order (SFO) Rule #25:
Regarding expenses necessary for the life of the fraternity and the needs of worship, of the apostolate, and of charity, all the brothers and sisters should offer a contribution according to their means. Local fraternities should contribute toward the expenses of the higher fraternity councils.