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Thursday, October 23, 2014

The ‘Ripple Effect’ of Fr. Benedict Groeschel’s ‘Yes’ to God

“If it hadn’t been for Fr. Benedict, I don’t know where I’d be.”  These words, spoken by a young man who had lived at the St Francis House for boys founded by Fr. Benedict in the 60’s, have been echoed by the sentiments of countless others during these days of prayer and rememberance.  As Fr. Andrew preached at yesterday’s funeral, “No Fr. Benedict, no CFR’s!” and so without Fr. Benedict, I don’t know where I would be! 


We CFR’s have been powerfully reminded (and perhaps educated) this week that Fr. Benedict’s untiring and faithful “yes” to God for over 60 years has been a source of tremendous grace for thousands, if not millions of people; bishop’s; priests; families in poverty; religious sisters; boys from Children’s Village; viewers of EWTN; readers of his 43 books; homeless men; women in crisis pregnancy and who knows how many more…?  And who knows what the ripple effect of God’s grace has been through the lives of those touched by Fr. Benedict?  Only God.  And that’s how Fr. Benedict would like it. 

So often the news is disturbing and frightening.  War, terrorism, disease, moral confusion.  There is a great deal of fear in our culture.  People feel helpless and hopeless in the face of everything and so do nothing.  But that wasn’t Fr. Benedict’s style!  He was a man of faith and hope, impelled by the love of Christ and so he had to do something.  And he did a lot!

But what is our response?  What is my response?  It must be the same response uttered by Fr. Benedict when he was 17 years old, as he left home to follow Jesus and join the Capuchins.  It must be the same response that then led him (some 30 years later) as he left the Capuchins (his home) to follow Jesus and begin the CFR’s.  The same response he uttered, not without struggle and suffering, for over 60 years. We can almost hear him say it in his unmistakable quiet voice, “Yes Lord.” 

Just the other day I read this quote from St. John Paul II and thought of Fr. Benedict:

The first duty of the consecrated life is to make visible the marvels wrought by God in the frail humanity of those who are called.  They bear witness to these marvels not so much in works as by the eloquent language of a transfigured life, capable of amazing the world  (Vita Consecrata). 

Fr. Benedict wasn’t perfect and nor are any of us.  I’m not called to be Fr. Benedict and nor are you but his powerful “yes” challenges each of us, in our frail humanity, to offer our lives to God wherever we are, with the same passion and generosity.  Fr. Benedict’s life made visible the marvels of God and you know what?  So can we!!  And that’s what amazes the world - the ripple effect of grace!

+ Fr. Emmanuel Mary Mansford, CFR
Harlem, NY
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Monday, October 13, 2014

To Obtain Father Benedict Memorial Cards

NEW!
Due to the overwhelming number of requests for Father Benedict memorial cards, we have created a new page with a form:
http://franciscanfriars.com/fatherbenedictmemorialcards/


If you already emailed us via the "contact page" of our website, we will be processing your request, no need to re-submit. Thanks!

Saturday, October 4, 2014

Fr. Benedict J. Groeschel, CFR, rest in peace

Father Benedict J. Groeschel, CFR, passed away on October 3rd at 11 PM.

Eternal rest grant unto him, O Lord, and may he rest in peace!


We have posted a Fr. Benedict page on our website found here:
http://franciscanfriars.com/father-benedict/




https://www.facebook.com/groups/fatherbenedict/

To make a memorial offering in honor of Fr. Benedict click here

Details for the wake and funeral will be forth coming.

Press Release PDF here

Statement from the friars PDF here

Friday, October 3, 2014

Happy Feast of Saint Francis!

 
Perfect paradox
This little poor humble man,
magnified the LORD!
 
 
The friars would like to thank all of you for the love and support! May Our Holy Father Saint Francis intercede for us so that we may, like Our Lady, magnify the LORD with our little lives! You have our prayers as well.
 
+ the friars
 
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Thursday, October 2, 2014

My Angel Made Me Forget!

Last night I heard confessions at a great young adult event at Saint Patrick's Cathedral (NYC). After all was said and done, despite my usual ability to remember, I could not remember where I parked my car. I went to the spot where I thought the car was and it was not there! "STOLEN!", I thought out loud.

Just then I saw some guys and an immodestly dressed woman get out of a mysterious van right in front of me. My eyes met hers and I had an uneasy feeling. I immediately headed back to the Cathedral in search of a police officer. Just before I spoke to the officer - out of nowhere -  I remembered that I had parked one block over from where I thought. Sure enough the car was still there...

This morning during Mass I had a heavy burden to pray for that woman. I now understand that my Guardian Angel had helped me to forget (later to remember) where I had parked so that I would see her and pray for her. Would you join me today in praying for all women who are in need of help?

From the closing prayer for today's Mass:
"As you are pleased to nourish us for eternal life
with so great a Sacrament, O Lord,
direct us by the ministry of Angels
into the way of salvation and peace.
Through Christ our Lord."


+ Fr. Luke Mary Fletcher, CFR
Yonkers, NY
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Thursday, September 25, 2014

HolyHaiku 26th Sunday in Ordinary Time (Matt 21:28-32)

 
 
A Man had two sons, -
Which one did the Father's will? -
God loves humble hearts! -



#holyhaiku (Matt 21:28-32)

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Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Worship (Matt 12:1-8)

Authentic worship involves our lowly and broken human heart bowing down before the transcendence and mercy of God. To do this the Church gives us aids such as words, bread, wine, water, oil, etc., to worship God in the manner he has chosen best. These aids are important and necessary. Yet ultimately it is the human heart that gives God worship. To not engage our hearts in worship is to fail to give God what he ultimately desires. Hence, real authentic worship is a way of life.


+ Fr. Jeremiah Myriam Shryock, CFR
Saint Joseph Friary
Harlem, NY
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Thursday, September 18, 2014

HolyHaiku St. Joseph of Cupertino



Lifted up in prayer
Body and Soul united
Seek what is above
 
 
#holyhaiku
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Monday, September 15, 2014

Breathe Deeply

St. Therese is famous for describing her vocation as a contemplative nun saying, “I will be love in the heart of the Church.” Then what’s that make us, I asked? Our life as friars is similar to the lay-life insofar as it is “active-contemplative;” it is a life of prayer and action. So if St. Therese is love contemplating the mysteries of God in the heart of the Church, interceding and living secretly for the life of the whole body, we might be likened to the breath of the Church.


First the inhale: the sustaining breath drawn deep into the lungs near the heart and its mysteries, then the exhale: the life gained within the body is breathed forth upon the world, shared in words, love and emotion, and then, again drawn deep into the body to recharge and ruminate on the mysteries of God, and the cycle repeats for the good of one and for all.

+ Br. Joseph Michael Fino, CFR
Yonkers, NY
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Thursday, September 11, 2014

CFR Sisters Investiture



Our Postulant Sisters were invested on August 2, 2014.
As they begin their Novitiate we await the arrival of our new Candidates!