Thursday, December 18, 2014

Fraternal meetings and Local Chapter in Fraternity

For last two years I have been visiting the various fraternities in the Conference and one thing that i appreciated of some few fraternities who give upmost importance in organizing and celebrating fraternal meetings and local chapters. Many have shared that these meetings and chapters allow us to nourish our common life as the Capuchins and develops a sense of unity and bond. Many of us long for these meetings as they give us a platform to share freely and fraternally to live as brothers. 

Every one loves to organize these meetings as they would explore the possibilities to know and studied the small and big fraternal issues. These are the moments which provide a moment to reflect on certain issues which keep occurring often and spoil the fraternal spirit. Today the corporate world believes in these kind of meetings which are healthy and strong for building relationship. Many have accepted the importance of it as these meetings increase our efficiency and efficacy. 

Thomas Celano provides an account: Only a short time had passed when Saint Francis began desiring to see them all. He prayed to the Lord, who gathers the dispersed of Israel, mercifully to bring them together soon. So what happened in a short time: they came together at the same time according to his desire, without any human summons, giving thanks to God. Coming together in one place, they celebrate with great joy on seeing their devoted shepherd, and they are amazed that the same desire to come together moved all of them in this way. They report the good things which the merciful Lord was doing for them, and if they had been somewhat negligent and ungrateful, they humbly ask and carefully accept correction and punishment from the holy father. (1C 30)

We all must follow and observe the Constitutions which give us a mandate to celebrate these meetings and chapters. During these meetings the Provincial or Guardian shares many spiritual and economical concerns with the brothers. 

They have the responsibility to correct, admonish and encourage them to follow our life as Capuchins. If the friars don't observe he has to be reminded again with with fatherly charity and motherly care. The guardians must plan these meetings and chapters well in advance and must encourage all to participate and no excuse of ministry and work be tolerated. 

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