My Dear Brother Francis,
You gave praise to God for you know he is the center of your life and draws you deeply into the love of his son Jesus, our Savior.
You prayed before the crucifix:
Most High, glorious God
enlighten the darkness of my heart.
I too echo this prayer, that our glorious and loving God may continue to shed light on my path so that with you I may walk in the love of Christ and share it with others. So many in our world seek light, I pray for the strength to be this vessel, inspired by you my brother and your living of the gospel.
You continued in prayer:
Give me true faith,
and perfect charity (love).
My dear brother, you know the human heart and journey well. For you know that in each of us is this deep desire – who is God. It is only through faith, hope and love that we can discover God’s riches as we face the challenges to live out our faith in what can seem like a faithless world, as we hold on to to hope that allows us to strive for the greater good of all and as we let love break down barriers and conquer fear. Yes my brother I hold on to faith, hope and love just as you did.
You my dear brother know the challenges of the world and call me and all people to root ourselves in Christ who is true faith, certain hope and indeed perfect love. For you have shown me that in rooting myself in Christ I am truly free to be the child of God that I was created to be.
You concluded your prayer:
(give me) sense and knowledge Lord,
that I may carry out your holy and true command.
I simply say yes, for I along with you pray (maybe even beg) each day for the sense and knowledge to know how God is calling me to serve and to gospel live. To be aware and attentive to God’s will at work in my life and to live out the the true command of loving God and neighbour first. For this declares the holiness in which everyone was created and doesn’t allow my selfishness or sinful self to take the lead.
My dear Brother Francis, as we celebrate your life today and your passing to the great heavenly kingdom, we celebrate the impact you have made on Christendom and the world. I pray your prayer. In doing so I seek what I believe you sought – to let Christ radiate out from each of us. As we give thanks for your witness to love, of your servant-heart, of your pointing to Christ, of your gospel-lived life,of your embracing the small, the great and all of creation I am reminded that you said to your brothers:
I have done what is mine to do. May Christ teach you what is yours.
So as we gather to celebrate your Feast Day, this wisdom of yours reminds me that my Franciscan journey is continually about conversion and openness. I am called to carry my cross with peace and joy, as I walk in your footsteps with Christ. I am empowered to say yes in doing what is mine to do (that my Savior teaches me). In doing so I can only hope that I give praise and thanks to our Most High and glorious God.
With gratitude for the path you have shown me, I humbly ask for your prayers.