Friday, July 6, 2012

Just Start the Journey, Speaker Challenges

Pat Brandwein-Ball, OFS
Pat Brandwein-Ball, OFS, took a moment to survey the hall from the podium and said:

"From up here the room is aglow because I see in your eyes the light of God."

Then she reminded attendees that "God wants us" to be holy, which the first part of the Secular Franciscan Rule addresses.

"The second part of the Rule talks to us about our presence in the world," which comes out of living the first part of the Rule.

The Rule and Constitutions are important documents in the life of the Order. Reading and studying them, and absorbing them internally help shape the Secular Franciscan identity.

"Franciscanism is not something you can put on and take off…," she said. "It's something you live and breath."

How do we get to that point? We're called to be saints, afterall. It's in that call we need to take a look at ourselves. What do we need to change within ourselves? Where is God calling us in our lives?"

She added: "Jesus came to make things anew. Let us not stand in the way of him making us new… of making the order new."

Pointing to the second part of the conference theme, "Claim the Gift," she said "it refers to our vocation" and claiming it is part of answering the question of where God is calling us to be.

She concluded by offering a challenge to "start the journey." Quoting from the book, Pathways to Re-creating, she advised that mission statements and waiting for everyone to get on board are not enough. Just start the journey. You can expect failure and ups and down. But just start the journey, and get up and start it again.