The Seraphic Alphabet Part 1
How to describe the spirit of our Franciscan charism?  We can discover a whole range of life-imitable traits contained in the letters of the title which Holy Church herself has attributed to the spiritual family of St. Francis of Assisi.

The     S*E*R*A*P*H*I*C     Order.

Thus our first ponderings reveal that the spirit of the Order is:
Simple, Swift, Singing.


Simple:
 Our Father St. Francis was a "man of single heart."  We marvel at the simplicity of his famous prayer:  MY GOD AND MY ALL!  And we see that his marveling simplicity spilled over into every phase of his life.  The simplicity, the single-heartedness of Francis invites us to "do likewise," to opt for his pattern of Christlikeness, rather than choosing the "me-most-ness" of complication, criticism, or complaint.

Swift:
   Our Seraphic Father discerned on the wings of the Holy Spirit.  When Christ Crucified said, Go repair My Church, the young Francis was off and away, even if the full import of the Lord's words had not yet penetrated his heart.  Francis thought he knew what God wanted him to do, and he went off to do it.  And, in the swiftness of that initial response, he found the light and grace needed to keep on answering God's call, even when repairing My Church went far beyond mixing mortar and carrying bricks.  So also in our lives, - at every moment, in every event, - God is calling us by name, and the swifter our YES! to His call, the more fully Franciscan we are and the better equipped we will be for yet more joyous and generous responding.


Singing:
    It has been said that The Franciscan Order was born with a song.  St. Francis' living and dying was so "song-full" that the more scrupulous friars worried over what the neighbors might think of such a death scene as his, overspilling with the sung praise of God.  The Seraphic "singing-ness" went far deeper than lyrics or notes, though; it was a whole life-set attuned to God and the wonder of His ways, unfolding in sorrow and in joy, leading (as our lives one day will) to the everlasting HOLY! HOLY! HOLY! of heaven.

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