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My Journey to the PCPA!


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So I wanted to start my official countdown on a big Franciscan day... so I thought I'd start it on the feast of the Stigmata of St. Francis which is September 17th (except today is a Sunday, so I don't know if that makes it not the feast after all or what.) But then I haven't even had a chance to go online today because I was at my parish's harvest festival working at the Perpetual Adoration booth where, unfortunately, we only had one person sign up. :(

Anyway, so today would have been 44 days until my entrance ceremony, which is, of course, on the Solemnity of All Saints but the day is pretty much gone. But I felt like starting it anyway, so here it is. :lol: Chaos like the rest of my life! My life isn't really that chaotic.

And I'm stealing Puella's idea about putting stuff from the Rule of St. Benedict up. Well, except as cool as St. Benedict is I'm gonna put Franciscan stuff up, because yeah... I'm going to be a Franciscan of course. That still makes me laugh. :rolling: Me, a contemplative Franciscan. Go figure.

So our first Franciscan tidbit is the first chapter of the Rule of St. Francis:

[quote]In the Name of the Lord! begins the life of the Friars Minor.

The Rule and life of the Friars Minor is this, namely, to observe the Holy Gospel of Our Lord Jesus Christ, by living in obedience, without anything of one's own, and in chastity. Friar Francis promises obedience and reverence to the lord Pope Honorius and to his canonically elected successors and to the Roman Church. And the other friars are bound to obey Friar Francis and his successors. [/quote] ( [url="http://www.franciscan-archive.org/patriarcha/opera/rules.html#RegB"]from the Franciscan Archives[/url] )

During my aspirancy I was reading [i]The Franciscan Life in Christ[/i] and this quote really resonated with me, and I think sums up my surprising attraction to the Franciscans. I was struck by the sheer simplicity of it. Our rule of life is "to observe the Holy Gospel of Our Lord Jesus Christ." Like, wow. On the one hand that's kind of a [i]duh[/i] thing. :doh: Like that's what we're all supposed to do. But I think we forget that sometimes. I know I have a tendency to make things more complicated than they should be. And yet, as basic as that is, it's that very simplicity that makes it a challenge. It's so simple it demands everything of you, because there is no other measure of how you're living up to it but putting everything you are into it. And I think the Christian life, Franciscan or otherwise, is about giving yourself completely to God. So I think I needed that, and I think that's why God drew me to the Franciscans even though that wasn't my natural inclination. Opposites really do attract! :)

p.s. Just so my address at the Monastery is in an easy to find place, here it is:

Sr. Jennifer
Our Lady of the Angels Monastery
3222 County Road 548
Hanceville, AL 35077

Edited by zunshynn
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[quote name='zunshynn' post='1065671' date='Sep 17 2006, 09:59 PM']
So I wanted to start my official countdown on a big Franciscan day... so I thought I'd start it on the feast of the Stigmata of St. Francis which is September 17th (except today is a Sunday, so I don't know if that makes it not the feast after all or what.) But then I haven't even had a chance to go online today because I was at my parish's harvest festival working at the Perpetual Adoration booth where, unfortunately, we only had one person sign up. :(

Anyway, so today would have been 44 days until my entrance ceremony, which is, of course, on the Solemnity of All Saints but the day is pretty much gone. But I felt like starting it anyway, so here it is. :lol: Chaos like the rest of my life! My life isn't really that chaotic. ...

p.s. Just so my address at the Monastery is in an easy to find place, here it is:

Sr. Jennifer
Our Lady of the Angels Monastery
3222 County Road 548
Hanceville, AL 35077
[/quote]

That's AWESOME Jen! I've been reading Arroyo's "Mother Angelica" the last week or so (I'm about 2/3 through), and it's just amazing. Mother really has that Franciscan spirit you talked about, doesn't she? --simple dependence on God. It really is a wonderful story, SO incredibly inspiring. I'm SO happy that you'll be there adoring and praising our Lord!

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What, you're not going to post from St. Clare's Rule? Or are they the same thing? [i]A Right to be Merry[/i] led me to believe they were distinct.

Anyhows - hurrah for dountdowns!

Love and prayers,

PP

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[quote name='puellapaschalis' post='1065770' date='Sep 18 2006, 02:49 AM']
What, you're not going to post from St. Clare's Rule? Or are they the same thing? [i]A Right to be Merry[/i] led me to believe they were distinct.

Anyhows - hurrah for dountdowns!

Love and prayers,

PP
[/quote]

I'll post from both, and their other writings too, because neither one is quite as long as St. Benedict's Rule, so I'm gonna post from a variety of stuff. They are distinct orders, as are the different Poor Clares, but I think they're all important in fully embracing the Franciscan spirit. And you all will become Franciscan fans, even you Benedictine junkies :rolling: because Franciscans are awesome and that's all you guys need to be the coolest people around. (Although I just realized that the first paragraph of Clare's Rule is basically the same, except it talks about it being the form of life for the Poor Clares given by Francis, so I could have used it just as well, but I didn't know that at first. :doh: I'm still learning myself, lol, so mostly I'm just posting stuff I come across that seems cool. :lol:

Like today... which is [b][size=2][color="#663300"]43 days[/color][/size][/b] I took a piece from St. Clare's letter to Ermentrude of Bruges, a woman in a group of Flemish women trying to live like the Poor Ladies:

[quote name='[url=http://www.franciscanfriarstor.com/stfrancis/stf_st_clare_of_assisi_writings.htm']To Ermentrude, dearest sister, Clare of Assisi, humble handmaid of Jesus Christ, greetings and peace.

I know that you, o dearest sister, have fled the filth of the world, with the help of God's grace; for which I rejoice and give thanks with you and again rejoice that you tread the paths of virtue strenuously with your daughters. Be faithful, dearest, to him to whom you are promised until death, and you will be crowned by him with the laurel of life...

Pray and be always vigilant. And the work that you began well, finish and the ministry you assumed, fulfil in holy poverty and sincere humility. Do not fear, daughter, God is faithful in all his words and holy in all his works, he will pour out his blessing on you and your daughters; and he will be your helper and your best consoler; he is our redeemer and our eternal reward.

Let us pray God for each other, for in bearing each other's burden of charity we shall fulfil the law of Christ.
Amen.
[/quote] (These are the first and last paragraphs, I'm going to post the middle ones as Part II tomorrow.)

St. Clare was really a champion of God's providence, and His faithfulness to His little, insignificant creatures. She was keenly aware of the fact that God alone could give her what she truly needed, and of His incredible generosity in bestowing upon us so many graces. That's why, I've finally started to realize, poverty of spirit is so important, that we have no attachments to earthly things so that we canbe that much more attached to Christ who has infinitely more wonderful things to give us than anything or anyone of the world.

And like the piece from yesterday, life is about us learning to be faithful to God. Our purpose in life and that crown that we strive for is that we might all forget ourselves, take up our "burden of charity" and stick to it. Because learning to love really does take a lifetime I think, and it's such a challenge, that we really must be vigilant about how we live it. But God is always there to help us, and he's so generous he does so almost to excess!

Edited by zunshynn
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[quote name='Veritas' post='1065686' date='Sep 17 2006, 10:10 PM']
That's AWESOME Jen! I've been reading Arroyo's "Mother Angelica" the last week or so (I'm about 2/3 through), and it's just amazing. Mother really has that Franciscan spirit you talked about, doesn't she? --simple dependence on God. It really is a wonderful story, SO incredibly inspiring. I'm SO happy that you'll be there adoring and praising our Lord!
[/quote]

She does. You know, it's funny, because when I first started listening to Catholic Radio, I would turn it off every time she came on, because she kind of bugged me. I was like, who does she think she is!? :P: But I think she grows on you because she's so honest, even when she has something to say that's hard to swallow. Her love for God and her reliance upon Him really has inspired me. The idea of spending my life in adoration of our Lord is so awesome... I couldn't have dreamed up anything better. I have Mother Angelica to thank for that in more ways than one. :saint: I read your vocation story. :blush: Sorry, all these discerners I get the stories mixed up a bit!

Oh yeah, so Saturday was my goodbye party. I work at a gift and stationery store, and we do alot of wedding invitations, so my mom did my invitations/announcements there. She didn't even ask me if I wanted a party, but I suppose if she had I would've said no :lol: . They turned out really nice, and I stuck little address cards in each one so people can write me if they want. I hope I don't get too many letters though... Otherwise I'll be REALLY busy from Christmas to Epiphany lol. But I'll love hearing from people.

The party was great, alot of people came by. Unfortunately my mom didn't realize it was the same day as my church's harvest festival, so alot of people from church were unable to come by. But I understood, and quite of people did come for a little while. And a few friends came as well, although most are away for school, and some got the address wrong :doh: . It was wierd though because a lot of family came that I didn't know real well, so I had to work hard to keep every one straight. :lol: plus, I'm not used to being the center of attention like that, so that was interesting. lol.

We said no gifts, but prayers were welcome ;) but of course a lot of people wanted to give me stuff. :rolleyes: I did get some lovely flower bouquets (actually one was from two ladies at my mom's work, whom I don't know, and they're absolutely gorgeous. I was so touched. And the other was from my mom's YLI group, whom I also don't know, and they were also lovely. That was really sweet of them.) And another lady from my mom's work gave me an awesome rosary made out of crushed rose petals. I love it... The scent of roses is so nice when I'm praying. :)

We have so much leftover food. I'm gonna be eating teriyaki chicken until I leave probably! :rolling: The weather was great too! Thank you Jesus!

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Jen,

Your first post today about the Benedictine and Franciscan rules and how they are similar and different had me really thinking that, oh my gosh, Jen is being so scholarly and analytical. Maybe this means that she is meant to be a Dominican and not a Franciscan. You had me really worried.

You're second post though talked about parties and food and my worries were assuaged. :D:

Edited by OLAM Dad
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Oh please let's not bring Dominicans and the Augustinian Rule into the mix. I have enough indentity crises as it is.

Focus! Zunshynn's thread, and she's a Franciscan. Let's all think Franciscan thoughts :think:

:idontknow: :lol:

Love and prayers,

PP

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[quote name='OLAM Dad' post='1066179' date='Sep 18 2006, 04:09 PM']
Jen,

Your first post today about the Benedictine and Franciscan rules and how they are similar and different had me really thinking that, oh my gosh, Jen is being so scholarly and analytical. Maybe this means that she is meant to be a Dominican and not a Franciscan. You had me really worried.

You're second post though talked about parties and food and my worries were assuaged. :D:
[/quote]
:rolling: I always did have more of an inclination (I thought) to the Dominicans because I thought I was really smart. :lol: But St. Francis and St. Clare must have pulled some strings, and yeah... I'm sure it's the food that got me. ;) Kind of like how one would think Hermione should have been a Ravenclaw, and then you're like, why is she in Gryffindor? And then you realize that she needed to be in Gryffindor to bring out that Gryffindor side of her. I don't know where that came from. :lol:

[quote]Focus! Zunshynn's thread, and she's a Franciscan. Let's all think Franciscan thoughts :think: [/quote]
Yeah, it's important to have Franciscan thoughts. Franciscans make fun people, Dominicans make smart people, Benedictines make serious people, and fun people are the best.

As for the term "Benedictine junky" I made that up myself. :think: I thought it was quite clever, because I was looking for the right term to describe Puella's Benedictine-ness and then there wasn't one, so I made it up. I'm brilliant, I know (again with the Dominican traits! :shock: :lol: )

Edited by zunshynn
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[quote name='zunshynn' post='1066220' date='Sep 18 2006, 04:39 PM']
Franciscans make fun people, Dominicans make smart people, Benedictines make serious people, and fun people are the best.

[/quote]

+

Suddenly, I realize why I've considered Dominicans and Benedictines, but never Franciscans --I thought it was just because I couldn't get over the whole poverty/animal stereotype thing. Now, I know it's because I'm just no fun! :lol:

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