Tuesday, July 5, 2016

Q concludes in a burst of joy

The 19th Q concluded with a burst of Franciscan joy, as National Minister Jan Parker, OFS, left the audience cheering and laughing as she belted out a special rendition of Gloria Gaynor’s “I will survive” – except that her lyrics changed it to “We’ve been revived.”

OFS testimonials at the Q

Using a smartphone videocam, National Vocation Committee Chair Jane DeRose-Bamman recorded testimonials about the Franciscan vocation.

Some 50 Quinquennial Congress attendees participated!

See the testimonials at YouTube.com/secularfranciscans.

Monday, July 4, 2016

Fear not in joy and love (day 4)

Carolyn Townes
Overcoming fear and recognizing the love of God within us. Those two things can fuel something greater in the Franciscan vocation, suggests National JPIC Chair Carolyn Townes, OFS, a featured speaker on the final day of the Quinquennial Congress on Sunday, July 3.

She asked the “Q” attendees – now up to 620 – what Christ’s greatest comandment was.

“Love God and love your neighbor as yourself,” the audience echoed in several variations.

'Good News' should prod us (day 4)

Fr. Dan Horan
The Gospel is the good news. But for whom?

It can comfort the afflicted. But it can also afflict the comfortable – those who need to be nudged out of their comfort zone in order to better respond to the call of the Gospel.

That’s how Franciscan Father Dan Horan introduced his final and third keynote presentation Sunday, July 3, at the Quinquennial Congress.

He noted that his topic of Racism and Xenophobia may surely make some uncomfortable.

Sunday, July 3, 2016

Br. Keith shouts Franciscan gems (day 3)

Br. Keith Warner
Keith Warner, OFM, stood at the podium and proclaimed: “‘Laudato Si’ is the most Franciscan papal encyclical ever!”

“Yeah!” the Quinquennial Congress audience murmured in reply.

Brother Keith raised his voice and repeated that statement. “Yeah!” the crowd exclaimed. Then the friar shouted: “ ‘Laudato Si’ is the most Franciscan papal encyclical EVER!” “YEAH!” the audience shouted back.

Thus began Brother Keith’s featured presentation on an encyclical riddled with Franciscan gems.

Fr. Dan on violence, peacemaking (day 3)

Fr. Dan Horan
Fr. Dan Horan, OFM, began his second Quinquennial Congress presentation Saturday, July 2, by pointing to the Canticle of the Sun. It perhaps was a culminating expression of Francis’ journey from violence to peacemaking.

Francis dreamed of being a warrior knight, but was slapped with the reality of becoming a prisoner of war. His life changed, and eventually he started on a path of discovering and living the Gospel, and becoming a peacemaker.

Saturday, July 2, 2016

Blessing Bags for homeless, families (day 2)

A stunned Sr. Connie
Hundreds of homeless and struggling families in St. Louis are getting a special “blessing”, thanks to the 19th Quinquennial Congress’ Blessing Bag Project. Franciscan Sister Connie Probst, St. Anthony Food Pantry director, was shocked at the size of the donation.

Q Co-Chair Kate Kleinart put it this way:

“We’re leaving St. Louis a little better than we found it.”

Attendees prepared bags of goodies and personal care items to give to the homeless and struggling families. The products were donated by Secular Franciscans across the country as well as by a few companies.