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Sr. Caterina's entrance into the Novitiate (Video 2.30min)

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Poor Friars

Here a 2.30min. video of Sr. Caterina’s Novitiate Entrance to the Little Friars and Little Nuns,
Celebrated in the Cathedral of St. Francis de Sales, Houma, LA USA:

 

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Poor Friars
On 3/10/2018 at 3:19 PM, Thijs said:

I'm glad that you are growing. More vocations I pray.

Thank you, indeed it is good news, we are now blessed with 4 American vocations: all women. Surprisingly enough, our charism that includes hitchhiking is attracting more women than men. Please pray that we find some men who not only hear the call, but follow trough with their "yes".  

 

 

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Nunsuch

I don't understand how a charism can include hitchhiking. It may be something you do, but charism is a spiritual inspiration from God given for the good of the Church, right? It's not a word to be used lightly.

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littlebell

Am I the only one that finds it disturbing that the members of this group are potentially putting themselves in grave danger by hitchhiking?  How many times have we all  been warned NEVER to hitchhike or pick up a hitchhiker because of the safety risk? 

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Francis Clare

I have been quiet on this Order, but it’s beginning to “niggle” at me the more I read about it.    Echoing  Nunsuch I find it more than odd that hitchhiking is considered by you to be a charism.  Farming is done by many Orders, but it’s not a charism.  Neither is candle-making, host making and distribution, fruitcake baking, going barefoot, etc..  They are what Orders DO not who/what they ARE.

And I completely agree that it is extremely dangerous to hitchhike, especially for young women - religious or not. I know the reply will be that God watches over them and keeps them safe, but are we not expected to be prudent, to take responsibility for our own well-being, etc,? I just sit here and scratch my head....why does hitchhiking appeal more to women than men?!  

I am immersed in a large writing project and don’t really have the time to do the research, but how long has the Order been in existence?  In the US.?How is it recognized in the US and Europe?  Public Association of the Faithful?  Just curious.

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Poor Friars
On 3/16/2018 at 6:43 PM, Nunsuch said:

I don't understand how a charism can include hitchhiking. It may be something you do, but charism is a spiritual inspiration from God given for the good of the Church, right? It's not a word to be used lightly.

Dear 'Nunsuch'
"Caris" in Biblical Greek (as you may know) among several different things means "gift". You are correct that I may have overseen the "precise" terminology for our Charism, but I did mention that our Charism "included" hitchhiking. So.... to answer your question, let me begin with explaining in full our Charism: Our charism, is parallel as both that of the first Carmelites and to that of the first Franciscans living in total poverty, simplicity and in a professional nature. 

The word Apostolate may have been more appropriate, by no means did I intend to take the word "Charism" lightly. I would invite you treasure the gift of the young vocations that the Lord has blessed us with and recognize the incredible gift of our vow of poverty (that enables us to hitchhike) that is both an inspiration from God and a gift for the good of the Church. 

The Lord says: “Take nothing for the journey, neither walking stick, nor sack, nor food, nor money, and let no one take a second tunic. Whatever house you enter, stay there and leave from there. And as for those who do not welcome you, when you leave that town, shake the dust from your feet in testimony against them.” (Luke 9:3-5) 

Where ever have you seen this biblical phrase practiced so clearly? We are pleased when people can appreciate the great sacrifices we make to evangelize, but can understand if some people struggle with believing some of these harder phrases of the Gospel are relevant to our modern world and can be lived in totality today. I can guarantee you that the people who stop for us are very grateful for our witness and often promise to return to the Sacraments of Confession and Communion after meeting us. This indeed is a gift to the Church.

I understand you mean well, and that your concern is for the safety of our members, and yes, this is paramount for us as well. In our divinely inspired desire to live the Gospel to the fullest, we feel compelled to bring the Lords message to the "existential peripheries" of our society through hitchhiking. Our Statutes clearly state that no nun/s are to hitch without a brother present and other do's-and-don'ts. 

We are grateful for your interest in our post and pray that you come to treasure the gift of our community hoping that next time, if you notice some kind of brotherly correction necessary, to please contact us in private rather doing it in public just as the Lord teaches in brotherly correction (Matt 18:15-17).

God bless you and Peace and Good!

Edited by Poor Friars

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Poor Friars
On 3/16/2018 at 7:13 PM, littlebell said:

Am I the only one that finds it disturbing that the members of this group are potentially putting themselves in grave danger by hitchhiking?  How many times have we all  been warned NEVER to hitchhike or pick up a hitchhiker because of the safety risk? 

Peace and Good "littlebell"
Indeed, "she was greatly troubled at what was said and pondered what sort of greeting this might be." (Luke 1:29). I'm sure that Mary would have gone through many of the same concerns as she followed the Lord so radically in her life too - Be assured that: "Seek first the kingdom [of God] and his righteousness, and all these things [including saftey] will be given you besides" (Matt 6:33). Each one of us puts ourselves in danger when we make the "Sign of the Cross" - like the target of a gun scope, we make ourselves vulnerable, courageously giving witness to Christ in full sight of the both angels and man alike. 

I'm so sorry that you have had such narrow-minded teachers in life to advise you to "NEVER" help someone who may be poor, in need or in distress. One of the very reason we hitchhike is to "shatter" that very maxim in life to "NEVER" trust your own intellect capable of discerning between someone who is genuinely in need from those who are false and mischievous.  You would know very well that the Lord says: “Do not give what is holy to dogs, or throw your pearls before swine, lest they trample them underfoot, and turn and tear you to pieces." (Matt 7:6). Like wise we are not obliged to enter the cars that stop for us. Some people you should not help, many you should. 

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Poor Friars
On 3/16/2018 at 8:36 PM, Francis Clare said:

I have been quiet on this Order, but it’s beginning to “niggle” at me the more I read about it.    Echoing  Nunsuch I find it more than odd that hitchhiking is considered by you to be a charism.  Farming is done by many Orders, but it’s not a charism.  Neither is candle-making, host making and distribution, fruitcake baking, going barefoot, etc..  They are what Orders DO not who/what they ARE.

And I completely agree that it is extremely dangerous to hitchhike, especially for young women - religious or not. I know the reply will be that God watches over them and keeps them safe, but are we not expected to be prudent, to take responsibility for our own well-being, etc,? I just sit here and scratch my head....why does hitchhiking appeal more to women than men?!  

I am immersed in a large writing project and don’t really have the time to do the research, but how long has the Order been in existence?  In the US.?How is it recognized in the US and Europe?  Public Association of the Faithful?  Just curious.

Peace and Good "Francis Clare",
Thank you for finding the time to write on our thread, I hope to answer your questions to the best of my ability. To avoid repeating myself, I have answered Nunsuch where you will find some of my answers already written there. Again though I apologize for the incorrect terminology of "Charism" when more appropriate would have been Apostolate. It is sweet that you put our Apostolate of (also) hitchhiking together with fruitcake baking! In deed the words of Jesus: "my yolk is easy and my burden is light" (Matt 11:30) in Italian is translated as "My yolk is sweet and my burden light" .

Yes, our lifestyle is somewhat radical and we happy to have been inspired by the Lord to live this way. It is difficult to comprehend for anyone who has not had the wonderful experience of hitchhiking (but also difficult for myself some times who admittedly can be weak in faith).  For our members, part of "who we are" is clearly the Gospel call to poverty: “If you wish to be perfect, go, sell what you have and give to [the] poor, and you will have treasure in heaven. Then come, follow me.” (Matt 19:21). (Note for any hypersensitive viewer: we want to be perfect, but do not claim to be).

The Dogmatic Constitution of Vatican II, Lumen Gentium (No. 8) says in regards to the evangelical call to poverty: "Just as Christ carried out the work of redemption in poverty and persecution, so the Church is called to follow the same route that it might communicate the fruits of salvation to men. Christ Jesus, "though He was by nature God . . . emptied Himself, taking the nature of a slave",  and "being rich, became poor" for our sakes. Thus, the Church, although it needs human resources to carry out its mission, is not set up to seek earthly glory, but to proclaim, even by its own example, humility and self-sacrifice. Christ was sent by the Father "to bring good news to the poor, to heal the contrite of heart", "to seek and to save what was lost". Similarly, the Church encompasses with love all who are afflicted with human suffering and in the poor and afflicted sees the image of its poor and suffering Founder. It does all it can to relieve their need and in them it strives to serve Christ. While Christ, holy, innocent and undefiled knew nothing of sin, but came to expiate only the sins of the people, the Church, embracing in its bosom sinners, at the same time holy and always in need of being purified, always follows the way of penance and renewal. The Church, "like a stranger in a foreign land, presses forward amid the persecutions of the world and the consolations of God", announcing the cross and death of the Lord until He comes." By the power of the risen Lord it is given strength that it might, in patience and in love, overcome its sorrows and its challenges, both within itself and from without, and that it might reveal to the world, faithfully though darkly, the mystery of its Lord until, in the end, it will be manifested in full light."

In our efforts to agree to disagree and tolerate one another here online, I hope that you one day may come to learn of the fruits we are baring to our Holy Mother Church through this unique opportunity we rejoice in the gift of being able to meet of those less "Churched" and far from the Sacraments by hitching.

Why women? I am scratching my head as well as to why are women seemingly (for now) more attracted to our charism then men. I can only guess that the men who are called have greater attachments to their plans and projects in life. It could also be a sense of unworthiness in the sinful states they find themselves in. The bizarre fact is though that we now have four American women in our community and not one American man.

In regards to our community's history, we are in all some 18 years of existence but only 5 years here in the USA. We have been Recognized by the Catholic Church at a Diocesan level through the bishop of Noto (Sicily) Mons. Antonio Stagliano, as Public Association (Ad. Experimentum) in anticipation of becoming an Institute of Consecrated Life with an Episcopal Decree of the 30th of May 2014. We have been welcomed into 4 other Italian Diocese: (Noto) / Tempio-Ampurias / Ozieri / Cremona / Turin; in 1 French Diocese: Toulon-Frejus; and in one American Diocese: Houma-Thibodaux. 

We hope that you can celebrate with us the gift of our young vocations to the Church. Meanwhile we wish you all the best with your writing project and above all, best wishes of Holiness.

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Egeria

For what it's worth, most "mixed" communities that I am aware of seem to almost inevitably attract more women than men. The one exception is that of Bose in Northern Italy where there are significantly more men. I remember discussing this with a sister there and she said that she thought their being an exception had to do with their founder, but she agreed that it was not in keeping with the general trend.

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