From the DFC: Making a Difference
Dear Friend- Peace and Good,
The other day, as I made my way down one of the hallways where I serve as Administrator for a large senior living community, I overheard two Deacon's coming to visit a member of their congregation, now living with us.
One of them said to the other, "You know they have a Communion Service here twice a week." The other asked in reply, "Whose church?" to which the first replied, "I don't care, it’s not Our Church."
I admit, I felt a sense of woundedness.
If only they could see what goes on in those twice weekly occurrences. How brave souls make their way from apartments by cane, rolling walker or their own steam, at the designated times. Coming with gifts of the Altar, as well as their Widow’s Mite. Light as an angel’s wings, or heavy with the burdens of wayward loved ones, sick children, hopes for a better and brighter world; in which to leave the next generation. Age 70 to 102, they come to hear the Gospel read, not preached. To celebrate the Eucharist and the Cup with one another as brother and sister- as growing spiritual individuals.
And that is only the Seniors. We invite staff to join should they wish, as our CEO holds the keys of understanding and wisdom that in order to do the work God has called us to, we must feed ourselves spiritually, and so he allow adjustments in our routine for staff to come, if they wish. Without prompt.
Here is only one way the O.E.F. makes a difference in the lives of others. The rhythm of this heavenly song is played out in hundreds of ways, shapes and forms daily by our members serving as Franciscans wherever they are found.
The college professor who finds the time during finals to sit with an anxious student who lives with the overwhelming sense of failure.
The housewife who joins many O.E.F. members diligently praying for each and every request we receive daily in our Prayer Center.
A member with a PhD who makes time freely every week to share music on a secured mental health hospital unit.
A professed member of the clergy who utilizes his vacation and finances to novice a member overseas, who is far, far away from the rest of us.
The jail chaplain clasps a hand, promising to the man he’ll return to solitary confinement the next day.
A Lutheran minister, his arms outstretched tells his congregation on Sunday morning, “Come!”
The hospice chaplain who drives across rain swollen, flood ravaged roads to say the funeral Mass for one of individuals he had the opportunity to know, love and serve in the last few moments of life.
A licensed counselor takes another client, in order that this woman of abuse may have an ally as she makes the difficult road independence.
The R.N. who chooses to work as a nursing technician in order to have the time to devote to the frail and elderly with whom she loving serves.
It is, The Love, that makes it worth-while and in which we members have found joy as our hallmark as followers of Jesus in the persons of Francis and Clare. Worried less about ‘Whose Church” and concerned more with Whose needs. Imperfect are we, those who God calls. Not always getting ‘it’ right, but trying none the less. Do you feel a calling to try with us? To join men and women around the world who want and need to make a difference in Unity? In Celebration! In Love? If so, drop us a line and know we all recognize the first step can often be the scariest, yet it need not be so with an Order of people, warts, bumps and bruises who see no slave, Greek or gentile. Not one Christian denomination, but many as children of the Most High God.
Faithfully yours in Francis of Assisi,
David Luke., O.E.F. Director- Office of Formation Counseling
Order of Ecumenical Franciscan’s Mission Statement:
Celebrating God's presence and grace in everything, following the Poor Christ of the gospels in lives of mutual care and accountability in harmony with the faith and practice of the whole Franciscan family, we are the Order of Ecumenical Franciscans. We seek to grow in the knowledge and love of God and to serve Jesus Christ in faithfulness to the spirit and example of Saints Francis and Clare of Assisi