"Preach the Gospel at all times, and when necessary, use words."

A special "Thank you!"
Goes out to
John Michael Talbot
for giving us permission
to use his song on our
"Come to the Quiet"
You Tube Video
_______________________________________________________ _______________________________________________________

Monday, February 28, 2022

St. Francis Would Break Into Song And Dance


If Francis was alive today and broke out into song and dance like he did back in his time, pouring out his abundant joy at the celebration of the Eucharist, there is no doubt the ushers would rush in and throw him out of the church on his ear. What a sad commentary on the death of the Spirit in our churches today.


Sunday, February 27, 2022

Ukrainian Mystic Josyp Terelya and a Message from Our Lady


Where Did The Franciscan Coat Of Arms Originate?


If you go to any of our Franciscan friaries, churches, or convents, you will almost always find the Franciscan Coat of Arms hanging on a wall or visible over a doorway. This holds true around the world as well as through the centuries. The Franciscan Coat of Arms often consists of a cross with two arms crossing each other—with a cross in the background. One arm is that of Christ; the other is that of St. Francis of Assisi. This image is a key identification badge for those who consider themselves followers of St. Francis.

This Franciscan Coat of Arms is an image worthy of our contemplation. The image is a true expression of both Jesus’ and Francis’ fervent style of love. We see in Jesus’ crucified hand, first of all, God’s incredible love for us. In Francis’ wounded hand, in turn, we see the loving response of St. Francis to the burning love of God, who first loved us.

This is indeed something to ponder. All in all, the Franciscan Coat of Arms is a wonderful expression of the Franciscan (or Seraphic) style of love. Though few of us live up to this ideal, it calls us to something rare and splendid!

This is how St. Francis of Assisi prayed, and where the Franciscans came up with the idea of his praying posture to be our Coat of Arms.


Traditional Latin Mass In Steubenville, Ohio

Franciscan Traditional Latin Mass in ArchBasilica

 May God continue to bless our beloved Bishop Jeffrey M. Monforton for allowing us to celebrate the Tradition Latin Mass in his Diocese of Steubenville, Ohio


Pray The Rosary In Latin With The Franciscan Friars


Ceremony of Investment Into the Franciscan Lay Apostolate (F.L.A.)



The investment of postulants with the scapular and cord takes place ordinarily twice a year at the monthly fraternity meeting of the Order. Only under special circumstances should private investments be permitted. The ceremonies of investment and profession can also be combined, to give more time for the monthly conference.

The postulants should receive a notification of investment beforehand, and the notification slip, bearing their name, address and new name in the Order should be presented to the Director as he invites each one. From these slips the record of investments is entered into the Fraternity Register of Investment and Professions. This same procedure should be followed by profession.

Postulants may be invested at the Communion rail, or preferably, at the altar step, the Novice Master and Mistress assisting to adjust the scapular and cord.

The Ritual of Investment
1. Opening the Meeting

Vested in surplice and stole, the priest kneels on the first step of the altar and begins the Prayers Before the Meeting on page 1. If, as is customary, the Come, Holy Ghost is sung before the sermon, the Veni Creator may be omitted at the beginning of the investment ceremony, i.e., after the blessing of the scapulars and cords. In this case, the priest may recite the Veni, Creator privately. After opening prayers the sermon is given.

2. The Petition

After the sermon, the priest, either standing or seated in a chair on the predella of the altar on the Epistle side, puts to the postulants kneeling before him the following question:
Quae est petition vestra? (What do you ask?)
Respondent postulantes: (The postulants answer together:)
Rev. pater, ego humiliter postulo habitum Tertii Ordinis de Poententia, ut cum eo salute aeternam facilious consequi valeam. (Reverend Father, I humbly ask of you the habit of the Third Order of Penance, * in order that with it * I may more easily obtain eternal salvation).
Tunc sacerdos ait: (The priest says:)
Deo gratias. (Thanks be to God.)
The priest addresses a few words of exhortation to the postulants. Then, facing the altar, he blesses the habits of the Third Order.

3. Blessing of the Scapulars and Cords

 Front view of the Caperon (Scapular) worn by the Franciscan Lay Apostolates

Rear view of the Caperon (Scapular) worn by the Franciscan Lay Apostolates

Photo of the Badge worn by the Franciscan Lay Apostolates
(St. Francis of Assisi Scapular with the Tau Cross Attached)
Photo of the Cincture worn by the Franciscan Lay Apostolates 
(aka the "White Cord of St. Francis of Assisi)

V. Adjutorium nostrum in nomine Domini
(Our help is in the name of the Lord.)
R. Qui fecit caelum et terram.
(Who made heaven and earth.)
V. Domine, exaudi orationem meam,
(O Lord, hear my prayer,)
R. Et clamor meus ad te ventiat.
(And let my cry come unto you.)
V. Dominus vobiscum.
(The Lord be with you.)
R. Et cum spiritu tuo.
(And with your spirit.)

In private receptions, the following prayer is omitted.

V: Oremus
(Let us pray:)

All: O Lord Jesus Christ, who have deigned to put on the garb of our mortality * and to be wrapped in swaddling clothes in the manger, * and who have graciously inspired your glorious confessor our blessed father Francis to institute three orders * and the Supreme Pontiffs of the Church, your vicars, * to approve them: * we humbly beseech the abundance of your clemency that you would deign to bless and sanctify these garments, * which the same blessed Francis enjoined his fellow soldiers, the Brothers of Penance, * to wear as a badge of penance and as a strong armor against the world, the flesh, and the Devil; * that these your servants, devoutly receiving them may so clothe themselves with you that they may in spirit of humility faithfully walk in the way of your commandments till death. Who live and reign world without end. Amen.

Benedictio cinguli seu chordae: (Blessing of the Cord:)

V. Oremus (Let us pray:)

All: O God,  who, to set the slave free, * would have your Son bound by the hands of impious men, * bless, we beseech you, * these cinctures * and grant that your servants who are girded with this bond of penance, * may be always mindful of the cords of our Lord Jesus Christ * and ever acknowledge themselves bound to your service. Through the same Jesus Christ, Our Lord. Amen.

The priest sprinkles the habits or scapulars and the cords, with holy water.
4. The Investment

The priest kneels before the altar and recites or sings alternately with the congregation or the choir the Veni Creator, unless it has been sung earlier in the meeting; or, while the priest recites it alone, the members can sing the Come, Holy Ghost:

The hymn being concluded, the priest rises, goes up to the altar steps to the predella, and turns to the postulants kneeling before the altar. Propriety requires that the following rites be done individually. If ever great numbers make it necessary to use the plural at the giving of the articles, the form may be said once for all, the priest then proceeding to bestow the respective articles on each postulant in succession.

May the Lord divest you of the old man with his acts, and turn away your heart from the pomps of the world, which you renounced when receiving Baptism
R. Amen.

The priest gives the scapular to each postulant, saying:

May the Lord clothe you with the new man, who according to God is created in justice and holiness of truth.
R. Amen

Giving the cord, the priest says:

May the Lord gird you with the cincture of purity and extinguish in your loins the passion of lust, that the virtue of continency and chastity may dwell in you.
R. Amen.

Then, a lighted candle is presented to the postulant, with the words:

Receive, dearest brother, the light of Christ as a sign of your immortality.
R. Amen.

Now the priest may give the novitiate a new name, saying:

Your name as a Tertiary shall be Brother (Sister) N.

And turning towards those present, the priests blesses everyone, saying:

May the blessing of almighty God, Father, Son and Holy Ghost, descend upon you, and remain forever. Amen.

The ceremony being concluded, each novice's Christian name, surname, residence, and the day of clothing must be entered in the register of the fraternity. It is customary to inscribe the date of reception on a page provided for this in the manual of prayers of the Third Order, The Tertiaries Companion. Certificates of reception can also be given to the novices.

Mark Hegener, O.F.M.

Pius J. Barth, O.F.M.
Minister Provincial, Sacred Heart Province

Conradin Wallbraun, O.F.M.
Marion Habig, O.F.M.
Censores Liborum

Samuel Cardinal Stritch
Archbishop of Chicago

April 16, 1955

Saturday, February 26, 2022

Happy Sackcloth And Ashes Lent


Franciscan Lay Apostolate (F.L.A.) Third Order Dress


"The men and women belonging to this Third Order shall dress in humble, undyed cloth, the price of which is not to exceed six Ravenna soldi et ell, unless for evident and necessary cause a temporary dispensation be given"


Dated 1221 A.D.


What To Wear? What To Wear? What To Wear?


Franciscan's shouldn't spend hours standing in front of their closets every morning wondering about what clothes we're going to wear that day. For us, the choices should be clear and simple: tan slacks and shirt or tan slacks and shirt.


Fashion Hogs


Maybe you're not ready to clothe yourself in a monk's simple habit, but there are still many ways Franciscan's can wean themselves from a $100 billion a year fashion industry. Why not pare down your closet and share your wardrobe with a homeless shelter or a soup kitchen with people who really need it?


Friday, February 25, 2022




Watered-Down, Wishy-Washy Christianity


St. Francis lived a life of joy and radical commitment to following Jesus. All too often we see an antiseptic, watered-down, wishy-washy kind of Christianity that kills the spirit and stomps out joy.


Imitating St. Francis of Assisi


What is so unique about St. Francis is that he does what we would like to do, and he does it in such a simple and ingenuous way that we know we could do the same thing is only we would.


Thursday, February 24, 2022

A New Jerusalem


The barriers between nature and the human city can only be broken down this way: The garden outside moves inside when the people move outside toward it. When there is no longer an inside or an outside but a New Jerusalem without walls and the entire earth becomes a garden once again. This is the social message of St. Francis, a message ignored after two thousand years of churches who repeatedly retreat and try to survive by hiding within their own walls.


Wednesday, February 23, 2022

Do You Think God Could Find Ten Righteous Men In Your Community Today?



Peace And Justice

The blueprint for "peace and justice" was drawn up by Jesus Christ in Jerusalem and St. Francis and his followers began to live it anew outside the little town of Assisi, Italy. The church sitting outside the city walls must be repaired first if the church inside the walls is going to be renewed. The physical Roman Catholic Church itself must be rebuilt stone upon stone with living stones if the Church is to become once again a living temple of Our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ!


Tuesday, February 22, 2022

The Hole We Have In Our Hearts


We seem so scared to death today of being alone that we flee from it. We choke our minds and souls with continuous music, chatter, cell phones to which we don't even listen. It is simply there to fill the vacuum of our lives. When the noise stops there is no inner music to take its place. That hole you have in your heart? It is perfectly filled by our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. All we need to do is invite Him in.


Our Quiet Place


Our quiet place should be as uncluttered as you want your soul to be.


Sunday, February 20, 2022

Our God Dwells In The Little Poor Abandoned Chapels


Our God dwells in the little poor abandoned chapels which also lay beyond the walls of the city. Once you cross beyond those walls there are not separate classes of people, and more importantly, people are not victimized and imprisoned by their being either rich or poor.


Choose A Secret Place For Thyself


"Choose a secret place to thyself; love to dwell with thyself alone; seek not to be talking with anyone; but rather pour forth prayers to God, that thou mayest keep thy mind in compunction, and thy  conscience clear." 


by Thomas A' Kempis


Saturday, February 19, 2022

What Is The True Value Of A Person?


What is the true value of a person? Today, a person's value and self-esteem can by and large be measured in proportion to our ability to make money. Money and what it represents becomes the fulfillment of our lives. St. Francis was a social reformer not because he saw what money would do to the fabric of society, but he saw what money would do to a man's soul and spirit.


The Secret Cave Within


The sacredness of our own personal relationship with the Lord is an area which is sometimes rudely and forcibly invaded today under the guise of "group dynamics," "group spiritual direction," or (God forbid) "group hugs." Communion with God is not fostered by invading that secret cave within where we sit naked and vulnerable in the presence of Almighty God.


Friday, February 18, 2022

The Gospel As A Way Of Life


The life of St. Francis says that the Gospel is a way of life and not a series of platitudes to make us feel good on Sunday morning.


I Pray For More And More Radicals Like St. Francis Of Assisi And Begin Living The Gospel


St. Francis' poverty was not the brainchild of a radical reformer. The radical streak of St. Francis is not found in his poverty but in his radical response to the Gospel of Jesus Christ! HE LIVES IT! I pray every day for more radicals like him to discover their true manhood. The people of Francis' time were astounded by his radicalness. They didn't believe living the Gospel was possible. Nor do we today...


Thursday, February 17, 2022

Original Rule Of 1221 A.D.


From the time of St. Francis' death the Church has tempered his "extreme" views by our periodic re-interpretations of the Original Rule. Now, as we enter into the Twenty-First Century and see around us the extreme peril to which the love of money has brought us and how little charity  there is among the nations and between God's people because of possessiveness and greed, the Original Rule of St. Francis no longer looks so extreme as it did once before.


The Kingdom Of God


Most of us fret about what is to be done to build up the Kingdom of God, as if it is we who are the ones responsible for bringing about God's Kingdom here on earth! The Kingdom is only made present when God takes up His dwelling among us; and God takes up His dwelling in us only if we are poor in spirit. It is not what we do that brings about His Kingdom but what we embrace, that God might dwell among us.


Wednesday, February 16, 2022

Assisi Hidden Behind A Wall Of Protection


Assisi is an enclosed city, hidden behind a wall of protection, just as we hide behind walls of our own making. Only through love can we  help people find an opening in those walls. The lepers were always forced to live outside the walls of Assisi and you had to pass by armed guards in order to go to them and embrace them. Likewise, you and I have to come out from behind our defenses and risk embracing what heretofore seemed repulsive and dangerous. Only then will there be any peace...and only love can make that happen.


Roll back The Stone

We must all roll back the stones from our hearts and arise from the cave of "self" forever. The treasure we seek in that cave is finally ours!


Ridicule And Scorn


No one can go around begging stones and dressing like a beggar without attracting attention; and when that someone was once a very prosperous businessman, that attention naturally turns to ridicule and scorn.


Friday, February 11, 2022

Tuesday, February 08, 2022

St. Francis Was No Sissy


"The minister general [St. Bonaventure] said to us: Here are some anecdotes that Brother Illuminato who accompanied St. Francis on his visit to the sultan of Egypt told us:

...The same sultan submitted this problem to him: "Your Lord taught in his gospels that evil must not be repaid with evil, that you should not refuse your cloak to anyone who wants to take your tunic, etc. (Mt 5,40): in that case, Christians should not invade our land?" - "It seems," Blessed Francis answered, "That you have not read the gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ completely. In another place we read: if your eye causes you sin, tear it out and throw it away (Mt 5 , 29). Here he wanted to teach us that every man, however dear and close he is to us, and even if he is precious to us as the apple of our eye, must be repulsed, pulled out, expelled if he seeks to turn us aside from the faith and love of our God. That is why it is just that Christians invade the land you inhabit, for you blaspheme the name of Christ and alienate everyone you can from his worship. But if you were to recognize, confess, and adore the Creator and Redeemer, Christians would love you as themselves."

St. Francis of Assisi

Omnibus of Sources
Thirteenth-Century Sources
Verba fr. Illuminati (Ms Vat. Ottub. lat. 522)
Golubovich, Biblioteca, vol. I, pp. 36-37


Sunday, February 06, 2022

Remain In The Presence Of God

St. Francis would say, "If the servant of God, as may happen, is disturbed in any way, he should rise immediately to pray and he should remain in the presence of the heavenly Father until he restores the joy of salvation."

Saint Francis of Assisi
Celano, Second Life


Saturday, February 05, 2022

Working In Harmony With The Clergy

Photo of my dear friend, Fr. Mike Scanlan, TOR, former President and Chancellor of the Franciscan University of Steubenville. Rest In Peace, dear friend

(December 1, 1931 – January 7, 2017)

St. Francis spoke thus because the harvest of souls which the friars desire to gather is more readily obtained by working in harmony with the clergy, thereby helping both them and the people, than by antagonizing them, even though they may win the people.

Saint Francis of Assisi
Mirror of Perfection - 10


Wednesday, February 02, 2022

Imagine No Felt Banners



Happy Groundhog Day


All God Asks Of Us Is That We Keep Our Sneakers Laced


When St. Francis went to preach at Celano after his return from overseas, a knight begged him insistently to come to dinner, Francis was reluctant, but his host almost forced him to come, in his devotion to him. Before they sat to eat, the saint offered praise and prayers to God as usual, like the truly spiritual man he was. There he learned in the spirit that his host must die in the very near future, and he remained standing with his mind fixed of God and his eyes raised to heaven. When he had finished praying, he drew his host aside and told him that he was going to die soon, advising him to go to confession and encouraging him to do what good he could. The knight took his advice and confessed all his sins to the saint's companion. He put his affairs in order and entrusted himself to God's mercy, doing everything he could to prepare for death. They were all beginning their meal when the knight, who seemed quite strong and well, suddenly passed away, as the saint had foretold.

Saint Francis of Assisi
Bonaventure, Minor Life