Blog Posts for "Franciscan Prayer"

Franciscan Prayer: The Eucharistic Disclosure of the Poor and Humble Christ (part 8 in a series)

Earlier posts on Franciscan prayer explored how Francis and Clare glimpsed the poor and humble God in the generous act of creation and his incredible self-emptying visible in the Incarnation of Jesus, especially in his birth and death–moments of such vulnerability that Jesus’ poverty and humility can scarcely be ignored. There is one more favorite Franciscan experience of the poor and humble Christ disclosing a poor and humble God: the Eucharist. Francis’ reasoning may not be clear at first, but it is simply this. Francis thought bread and wine were about the most humble things in all of creation....

Know Thy Self (Part 1)

Discernment can take on many forms, but during novitiate I have kept coming up against a common subject of discernment which has revealed itself to be a very difficult one to undertake. This, for me, has been the discernment of self. Through personal experiences, classes, spiritual reading and spiritual direction, this importance of self-discernment has continued to pop up over and over again. The discerning of one's self, in light of one's relationship with God, is a very common theme to be found among the works of many spiritual writers. Being a big fan of authors such as Thomas Merton,...

Franciscan Prayer: Recognize Your Brothers and Sisters in Christ (Part 7 in a series)

A lot of people are amazed when I claim that the core of the Franciscan mission is to create sister-brotherhood as often and as radically as possible. I’ve already discussed this regarding Francis’ prayer considering creation, which helped him to understand God’s selflessness in sharing life and all created things as his sisters and brothers. Francis also used the metaphor of sister-brotherhood in another slightly different way that also flowed out of his prayer. Francis understood all baptized Christians to be brothers and sisters because they were united to Christ in service to the same Father. In medieval...

Franciscan Prayer: Change Your Life by Imitating God’s Life (Part 6 in a series)

In this post on Franciscan prayer, I explore two characteristics that make this style of prayer somewhat unique. The first is Clare’s addition of imitation at the end of the standard three-part monastic method of gazing (reading), considering (meditating), and contemplating. This addition gives typical Franciscan prayer a tight connection to life. Franciscans imagine their prayer to change their lives. The second characteristic is the object of the gazing, in other words, what we look at. In Franciscan tradition, the prized object of gazing is the poor and humble Jesus who discloses a poor and humble God. When these...

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