Franciscan Sister of Christian Charity Marsaia Kaster serves as a Secular Franciscan Spiritual Assistant in the La Verna Region at St. Joseph Parish, Appleton, Wisconsin. She shares here one of her monthly reflections. Picture: St. Francis and his brothers by Artist Pedro Subercaseaux.
St. Francis Speaks to Us Today:
Francis did not love “community,” he loved his brothers. The “FRATERNITY” meant so much to Francis who knew and valued each one of his brothers with a unique, personal, respectful love.
When asked to describe the “perfect brother,” Francis said “that a good Brother Minor would…(have) the faith of Brother Bernard…along with the love of poverty; the simplicity and purity of Brother Leo…the Courtesy of Brother Angelo…the gracious aspect and natural sense with fair and devout eloquence of Brother Masseo; the mind uplifted in contemplation that Brother Giles had even to the highest perfection; the godly and continual activity of holy Rufinus, that did always pray without intermissions, so as that even asleep or at work his mind was always with the Lord; the patience of Brother Juniper, …and his surpassing desire to imitate Christ by the way of the Cross; the bodily and spiritual strength of Bother John de Laudibus… the charity of Brother Roger…the solicitude of Brother Lucido…The life of these first Friars was a life of extreme simplicity and exuberant joy…” (Quoted from chapter 5 of A Mirror of Perfection, Sabatier Edition, 1928 – p. 333 of.) Francis of Assisi: The Prophet – Early Documents.
We might respond: Please help us, Father Francis, to know, understand, accept and admire each of our brothers and sisters as you did yours; that loving one another, our joy, too, may be full.