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Tuesday, April 28, 2015

CFR Founding Day

Today marks the 28th anniversary of the founding of our community, a most celebratory day. It is sadly though the first time we celebrate this day without Fr. Benedict Groeschel. His passing is still felt, especially on a day like today. Without him, our community would simply not exist. When he and 7 others left the Capuchins to found this community 28 years ago, little did they know that in a short time, the community would grow to over 120 members worldwide. Starting a new community is no picnic, as our founders have always said. It is full of blood, sweat, tears, trials, crosses, and yes, joy. Fr. Benedict and our other founders wanted to live in a radical way, carrying the charism and spirit of St. Francis into the poorest neighborhoods, and into the 21st Century.

It is difficult to say where we will all be in 28 more years, yet we can find inspiration in these 8 men’s’ example. They did not know what lay ahead of them when they moved to a war zone in the South Bronx in 1987. They could not see but a few days ahead of them. Yet they went all in on God’s Providence, and He provided in spades. Fr. Benedict often said when they began the Renewal: “We have to do something!” These are guiding words for us in our time and world. May their example inspire us to abandon our lives into the Hands of the Good Lord.

+ Fr. Anthony Marie Baetzold, CFR
Community Vicar
Yonkers, NY
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