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More or Less Church

Joanna Depue "DJ/Deacon J" writes original songs and liturgies, does daily Farm office work and records Barbara's eMos on The Geranium Farm. A singer and dog trainer she utilizes healing touch in her private massage practice. PLEASE share YOUR original ideas for worship, special liturgies, prayers, songs, sermons and noteworthy blogs right here.
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Tuesday, October 04, 2005

Francis, friar 1226 and the world view

Francis had it made, pretty much. Good family - one with money and prestige. He had it made and decided to give it all up and embrace a poverty that most of us cannot identify with. Radical poverty. Voluntary poverty. The kind that is in the Gospels. Giving of self and means to those with less.

He espoused another dedication: identification with the suffering of Christ. Unless I'm existing in a parallel universe, this suffering concept is another one we US of A folk avoid. We avoid thinking of the agonies of Jesus and what compelled him to love so extraordinarily.

When the "Franciscan" order grew by leaps and bounds, it not-too-slowly lept away from Francis' vision and principles. The absolute poverty was just too difficult for the individual friars and their organization. Even in this, Francis forged on.

We have few of his writings - he seemed much more intent upon embodying the Gospels rather than preaching on it or writing about it. The few we have - the Canticles - have a passion for love and life and an interdependent Creation. There is a streak of spontaneous joy, profound connection, palpable humility.

The way of Francis is a bit radical... then again, the way of Christ is too when compared with the material preoccupation that surrounds us in this country. Perhaps, just perhaps, we could use a smidge of radical in our love for Christ, our fellow human beings and the world we temporarily live in.

Besides this feast, there are other celebrations going on in the world and I'd like to mention them here so that you can pass on good wishes to your acquaintances of other faith traditions:

Jewish, as they celebrate Rosh Hashanah and New Year 5766; Hindu, as they celebrate Navaratri (Celebration of Nine Nights, the Victory of the goddess Durga over a demon); and Muslim, as they celebrate the beginning of Ramadan.

God bless us every one. Amen and Amen


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Over the years I've presided at a number of ""Blessing of the Animals" services. Some held out on the lawn, some with indoor processions, some including stuffed animals. I think the primary overall impact on me personally of these observances has been to come to regard all animals as members of my "community." We feel it's a kind of stewardship to feed the birds and tend to wounded creatures and a kind of respect to enable our livestock and pets to express their uniques personalities and to establish as much "communication" between us as possible. We humans do that last bit by learning to "speak" some of the body language and sounds of the animals around us and it certainly seems to us the animals come to understand much of our words and for their part put out a genuine effort to communicate with us in their language. This year we have been blessed to interact with four dogs, two cats, two rescued finches, a rescued rabbit, a snake, a toad, two litters of abandoned wild rabbits and 22 domestic rabbits, plus the multitude of birds using our twelve outdoor feeders. In this environment we rarely feel alone and are often amused!

10:01 AM  

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