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  #76  
Old Jun 5, '11, 8:31 am
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JReducation JReducation is offline
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Default Re: Secular third orders with full habits

Quote:
Originally Posted by Fra Pio View Post
Ave Maria!

Dear Br.JR, thank you, and yes, your writings are very very helpful. You do not know how much work you save us, as when some of us have ideas to write regarding the restoration of the original spirit of the SFO, we find you have already written on the topic! Thankyou!

Brother, I have read the new Rule and Constitutions, along with other documentation regarding the holy habit. However, I cannot see where Pope Paul VI has specifically abolished nor abrogated totally the use of the habit. Do you have any quotations that you could pass on?

At http://allfortheimmaculate.blogspot.com/ we gather some of your pertinent topics for the good of the Order. They are fantastic.
The rule and constitutions abrogate it. The pope promulgates the rule and constitutions. By doing so, then everything in the rule and constitutions takes on the force of law.

In this case, because the rule and constitutions have abrogated your traditional habit and the pope has promulgated your rule and constitutions, with a papal bull, in effect, he has abrogated the traditional habit, for the SFO. That's how it works.

Fraternally,

Br. JR, OSF
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  #77  
Old Jun 5, '11, 8:45 am
Fra Pio Fra Pio is offline
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Default Re: Secular third orders with full habits

[quote=JReducation;7949786]The rule and constitutions abrogate it. The pope promulgates the rule and constitutions. By doing so, then everything in the rule and constitutions takes on the force of law.

In this case, because the rule and constitutions have abrogated your traditional habit and the pope has promulgated your rule and constitutions, with a papal bull, in effect, he has abrogated the traditional habit, for the SFO. That's how it works.

Fraternally,

Br. JR, OSF [/QUOTE

Brother, in the case of law, that which is not forbidden is allowed. There is no explicit quotation in either the Rule nor the constitutions that actually specifically forbid the habit as far as I could see. Of course the Order itself can change its outward sign to whatever it wishes, but it is not at all clear (at least to this testa dura) that the habit has been "abolished."

If the Pope did do this, as you explain, then all discussion of course stops. But in my worthless opinion, and in my past experience, the full habit worn at Franciscan related events, like monthly meetings for example, was not a detriment to the Franciscans. In fact, it eliminated all individuality, exclusivity during the meetings, it was a beautiful exterior expression of what was happening interiorly (which is what clothing should do) and it aided in communal prayer and brotherhood when all had the habit on. Especially during clothing ceremonys and professions!

Really, for me, I cannot understand how a habit can be forbidden during a monthly meeting, during all of a secular Franciscan's life, but when he dies, then he can put it on... just my opinion.

My prayer is that the SFO will get together on this and promote the habit (during Franciscan events!)

Fra Pio
  #78  
Old Jun 5, '11, 6:10 pm
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JReducation JReducation is offline
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Default Re: Secular third orders with full habits

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Originally Posted by Fra Pio View Post
Brother, in the case of law, that which is not forbidden is allowed.
Not in religious law. The Sacred Congregation for Institutes of Consecrated Life and Societies of Apostolic Life, which is the highest governing authority over religious and secular orders maintains, to this day, that what they do not explicit approve may not be done without their consent or those whom they acknowledge as having canonical authority.

The Sacred Congregation authorizes canonical superiors to legislate over the members of their institutes. In your case, that would be your General Minister, National Minister, Regional Minister and Local Minister. In my case, because we're much smaller, that would be the General Superior and the local Father.

The practice has always been, "when in doubt, do not do it until you have permission." This has been a practice that started with the first monks over 1600 years ago and has expanded to the rest of the Church, especially the Institutes of Christian Perfection.

Quote:
There is no explicit quotation in either the Rule nor the constitutions that actually specifically forbid the habit as far as I could see.
I had to call one of the SFO formators, because I did not know where it was. Sorry.

Here is what I was told. First, I was directed to the NAFRA Statutes, Section III, Articl 16, Parr. 4.

"The external sign of the SFO in the USA is the TAU."

Then the following was explained to me. It was the decision of the General Chapter that the only fraternities that could continue to wear the old habit were those who had a custom of doing so and those who were approved by the National Council.

It was the decison by the National Council of the USA that only the TAU could be worn as an external sign.

The habit was deliberately excluded from both the rule of 1978 and the constitutions of 2000. Both the rule and the constitutions were submitted to Popes Paul VI and John Paul II for approval as they were with the full knowledge that once the papal bull was issued, the habit could not be added to the law that governs the entire order. It then becomes a question that is answered case by case. My understanding could be wrong. I'm not a lawyer.

I'm only sharing my thoughts here, not speaking authoritatively.

Quote:
If the Pope did do this, as you explain, then all discussion of course stops.
If the system that governs religious is the same for secular orders, here is how it works. For us, religious, once a constitution is approved by a pope, the discussion is over. You cannot add or delete to it without getting the darn thing approved again.

The Constitution interprets the rule and the council interprets the constitution.

Let's face it, St. Francis was very clever, more so than most people give him credit for. He set up a system of government where the rights of the governed are decided by those who do the governing. Who does the governing in the Franciscan family? The chapter.

We obey those in authority when they exercise the authority given to them by the chapter. Even those in authority are subject to obedience, because they have to obey the chapter.

Since the General Chapter that voted to ratify the Constitution did not ratify a habit, then the habit is not part of the life of the fraternity. In religiuos law, you cannot add to the life of an institute that which has not been approved, UNLESS . . . the legitimate authority has the right to do so.

Quote:
But in my worthless opinion, and in my past experience, the full habit worn at Franciscan related events, like monthly meetings for example, was not a detriment to the Franciscans. In fact, it eliminated all individuality, exclusivity during the meetings, it was a beautiful exterior expression of what was happening interiorly (which is what clothing should do) and it aided in communal prayer and brotherhood when all had the habit on. Especially during clothing ceremonys and professions!
This was precisely what they were trying to preserve, individuality and secularity. They wanted to get away from the religious look. They were very concerned about not looking like the friars, the nuns and the sisters.

Now that I think about it, it actually makes sense. There are many secular deacons, priests and bishops who are Secular Franciscans. The last thing that these men want is to lool like religious, pray like religiuos, act like religious or relate to each other as religious relate to each other. A habit would set them apart from their secular brother deacons and priests. You may have noticed that they don't wear the TAU either. The clerics in the SFO avoid all external signs of religion, to avoid being confused with religious.

The uniformity of the SFO is in its secular appearance and its preservation of its secular externals. The unifying element is St. Francis.

Personally, I have mixed feelings about secular orders wearing a habit. I like the symbol. That's really very powerful with me. I wear a habit, so why not other people?

On the other hand, there are some real nut jobs out there whom I would not want to have wearing a habit. It puts that person's dysfunction on display. What I'm saying is that it's a double edge sword.

I feel strongly that the SFO has to work harder on its screening process and on its formation program. At this time, that should be its priority. It's the largest arm of the Franciscan family and it can and should make its presence felt in the Church as it once did. There are too many brothers and sisters in the SFO who are just attendees at a meeting. That's not what Francis had in mind.

Fraternally,

Br. JR, OSF
__________________
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Brother JR, FFV

"Forget not love."


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  #79  
Old Jun 5, '11, 9:20 pm
Niklas Niklas is offline
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Default Re: Secular third orders with full habits

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Originally Posted by JReducation View Post
Let's take this in baby steps.

1. A secular order is a real order. It is not a society of some kind that you can leave at your convenience.

2. Membership in a secular oder requires perpetual profession to live according to the vision of the founder and the mission given to the order by the Church.

3. Perpetual profession binds you to live according to the charism of the order 24/7, not just at meetings.

4. If there is a particular form of dress or habit that is part of the charism, it is appropriate to wear it. If there is not such dress, then it would be contrary to the charism of the order.

Whether you're a religious or a secular, the moment that you may profession in an order or in a congregation, you bind yourself to the charism. It may be wonderful for the Church and the world, but it's not part of your charism; therefore, you cannot do it. In fact, if you do what is contrary to the charism of your community, you're not contributing, you are doing harm. This happened to religious orders and to religious congregations and now we have several million lay Catholics who hate religious.

For centuries, religious had their charisms and their mission given to them by their founders. A need arose for priests in parishes and Christian teaches in schools. Religious superiors agreed to ordain many men and assign them to parishes. They also agreed to profess many men and women and assign them to teach in Catholic schools.

As time passed, these religious priests who were in parishes were so secularized, that there was no difference between them and a diocesan priest, except the habit. They lived and worked just like diocesan priests did, not as consecrated religious should live. The other religious men and women who were in schools became so academically oriented that they no longer ran schools for the poor. They ran schools for the academically gifted, which was usually the middle and upper classes.

All of these religious convinced themselves that they were doing something good for the Church. What they failed to see was that they were depriving the Church of the charism that Christ had given to their founder. You could no longer tell the difference between a Dominican, Franciscan, and Diocesan priest. You could not longer tell the difference beween a Catholic school run by the Brothers or Sisters of St. X and the very preppy private school down the street.

Suddenly, Vatican II happened and ordered every religious and secular order, as well as every religious congregation to return to its roots and to the charism of its founder, to stop trying to meet every need in the Church and dedicate ourselves to being the men and women that we were called to be. The result was catastrophic. Thousands of men and women left, because they did not enter the religious life to live a charism. They entered to do what they were doing, which was what they believed to be what the Church needed instead of what Christ had inspired in the founder.

In addition, the orders and congregations began to pull out of parishes and schools. They realized that they did not belong there. Either the parishes and schools were middle class and highers and the founder was called to serve the poorest of the poor or they were never called to run parishes or schools in the first place. When they left, the laity had a stroke and the resentment began. It has not yet died out.

No, it's not a good idea to do something because it would be good for the Church and the world, unless it's in keeping with the vision and mission of the founder and the charism of the community. You will only end up having to correct what you're doing and it will create resentment.

Fraternally,

Br. JR, OSF
Dear Brother in christ Jesus thank you for your reply it gives me a lot to think about I lived for most of my life in some of the less pituresque parts of Scotland in some of the most deprived communities among some of the most deprived people in many working with The catholic Church and other Christian denominations for what i hope was the betterment of the community and those i served in these communities.

I am an ordinary kind of guy i dont belong at present to any lay order although i am praying about this matter at present.

I would like to answer your reply but i have learned a long time ago to pray before i write or speak as this i feel that is important when speaking or communicating to anyone made in the image of My Lord and Saviour and particularly when i a communicating with those more mature in the faith than i.

I believe all communities are so different with so many different needs and of course many have common needs the guidance of the Holy father and Church being of paramount importance.

I dont have all the answers only my own experience of life and my faith journey so i have joined the community of Catholic answers to learn from others and of course to listen to others in scotland Christian witness is greatly needed the secularisation of my homeland and the attitudes to Christians of all denominations in Scotland has changed dramatically over the last 20 or so years.

So i can only speak about the UK or Scotland in that context and real change is needed in Scotland from all Christians of all denominations and all social classes or i fear we will lose tommorows generations to athiesm and worse.

So forgive me if i take time to read your reply and pray for guidance on my reply to you.

Your Brother in Christ Jesus,

Niklas.
  #80  
Old Jun 6, '11, 5:37 am
EvelynEVF EvelynEVF is offline
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Default Re: Secular third orders with full habits

The wooden TAU is quite distinctive and yet does not interrupt secular dress. Personally I'm very happy with that as our habit and I wear it pretty much all the time. i have a nicer one, but the everyday version (wooden) is often clutched and fiddled with by the children I take care of, and a close look reveals very tiny teeth marks from a distressed cat who had his head tucked into my chest.

I think it offers a distinction from the more common cross or crucifix that any Catholic might wear, but is minimal enough to avoid confusing us with religious. (I do also have a TAU pin in enamel, but given that the nuns here wear lapel pins, I usually stick with the wooden pendant)

Evelyn
  #81  
Old Sep 19, '11, 6:43 pm
perro sarnoso perro sarnoso is offline
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Default Re: Secular third orders with full habits

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Originally Posted by MarcusAndreas View Post
Curious, are there any of these? I know such a thing was perfectly common back in the long day but how about now?


Although less and less - this is still a tradition in many Hispanic countries. The last one I saw was in California, an American lady!
But back in PR, Dominican Republic, Central and S. America - it is still common.

I have considered this......after I retire from my current job. I work as an interpreter in a local hospital.
I have considered following a deeply prayerful and contemplative rule - interspersed with manual work and community service.
  #82  
Old Sep 19, '11, 9:55 pm
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JReducation JReducation is offline
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Default Re: Secular third orders with full habits

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Originally Posted by popsep View Post
I have had trouble to get in to an order because I am to old. But that didn't stop our Lord from calling us. Now if men over , 35, 45, 50 all cut off ages, become a third order and take vows then live in community and call it a semi cloister, (They my have to work and come back) can they wear a habit. they would live on there own money. We would do and act just as a real cloister, monastery, or abbey. ( for prayers) What do you think?
That would be an association, not a third order. The rules that govern them are different. That's how my community began.

Fraternally,

Br. JR, OSF
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Brother JR, FFV

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  #83  
Old Sep 20, '11, 12:32 am
Hopemercy Hopemercy is offline
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Default Re: Secular third orders with full habits

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Originally Posted by Diaconia View Post
That's unfortunate, our world needs the witness value of habits (and for that matter, clerical attire, too) more than ever.

Tertiaries should wear the habits of their orders.
No they should emphatically not.

They are lay folk, not religious.

The habit is full time; not to dress up in sometimes.

Our world needs integrity in religious life.

Be happy to be lay and tertiary' it is unique and beautfil but it is NOT religious life.

In early centuries, some thrid order wore habits but they were totally different form the religious in that order.
  #84  
Old Sep 20, '11, 12:36 am
Hopemercy Hopemercy is offline
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Default Re: Secular third orders with full habits

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Originally Posted by JReducation View Post
I think there are some misunderstandings here. The original habit of the Brothers and Sisters of Penance was a tunic without a hood, a scapular and chord. It was usually worn under the street clothing.

The comparison with the Lay Dominicans is not a good one, because the Lay Dominicans are not a canonical order of Pontifical Right. They are an association that is attached to the Dominican Friars. Dominic never intended for them to be an autonomous order. That's why they wore the same habit as the friars and the nuns. Actually, the black scapular was worn by the Dominican Lay Brothers and Extern Sisters. The Lay Dominicans wore the same habit.

The Order of Friars Minor, the Order of Poor Clares, the Order of the Brothers of Penance, and the Order of the Brothers and Sisters of Penance are all Franciscan, because we are all sons and daughters of Francis of Assisi and he founded all four orders. But they are autonomous. That's why we never wore the same habit. Even the friars wear different habits according to region, ministries, and the different obediences.

In 1978 Pope Paul VI promulgated the new rule for the Third Order Secular Franciscans. He made several changes to the previous rule.

He changed the name of the order from the Brothers and Sisters of Penance, to the Secular Franciscan Order. He wanted to make sure that the Secular Order was not confused with the Regular Franciscan Order, which is known as the Brothers and Sisters of Penance.

He abolished the habit, because he wanted the Secular Franciscans to project secularity without embracing secularism. He wanted you guys to persevere in the traditions and customs of the Franciscan order, without being confused with the friars, sisters and nuns. It was decided that the Tau would replace the habit. However, those fraternities that had worn the habit for more than 100 years were allowed to keep it.

It was also Pope Paul's desire to see the Secular Franciscans more involved in the apostolic work of the local diocese as a group that would set the example for other secular men and women. It was his opinion that the use of a habit would not be effective, because you would look like religious. Therefore, other secular men and women would not be inclined to follow.

Since the rules of the four Franciscan obediences are issued with Papal Bulls, the current rule for the Secular Franciscan Order is canonically binding on all Secular Franciscans and on the rest of the Church. This means that those of us who are not Secular Franciscans, must accept the Secular Franciscans as they are described in the rule and neither laity nor bishops can interfere with them or dictate to them. Nor may we friars or the sisters and nuns dictate to them in any way, unlike the Dominicans and Carmelites who do have authority over their third orders, because they are not canonical pontifical orders as are the Secular Franciscans.

Until such time as another Pontiff raises the Papal Bull and authorizes a rewrite of the current rule, the SFO rule must be observed as is. The problem is not the rule nor the absence of a habit. The problem are the constitutions of the SFO. Those were not dictated by the pope. Those were written by the delegates to the General Chatper of 2000 and voted on by the membership of the order. In my opinion, those constitutions fail to apply the rule correctly. They confuse secularity with secularism and include an excessive enphasis on secular life of the brothers and sisters and fail to say enough about fidelity to Franciscan tradition and spirituality.

If you read the consitutions of any of the branches of friars, they are very spiritual and very theological. They have very few references to what to do when to do it and why do it. They speak about the spirit of St. Francis and provide an explanation for each point. For example, it speaks about fraternity and then explains what constitutes fraternity and why it was important to our Holy Father. Things like this are missing from the constitutions of the SFO.

Even if they wore a habit, without the spirituality, the habit is just a costume.
Fraternally,

Br. JR, OSF


Exactly so
  #85  
Old Sep 20, '11, 12:40 am
Hopemercy Hopemercy is offline
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Default Re: Secular third orders with full habits

Quote:
Originally Posted by BVM 1221 View Post
Certainly not for the Confraternity of Penitents...

http://www.penitents.org/

I think ANY lay Catholic Lay Person should be allowed to wear a habit on special occasions, with permission from their Priest and/or Spiritual Advisor.

I mean....does the term "witness" mean anything anymore? With so many Priests dressing in secular clothing more and more of the time outside church?


WItness is how you live your life; not by dressing up in costumes

Witness is your holliness and goodness and you total life in Jesus.

And of course wearing a religious habit when you are lay is going to confuse and dilute issues even more.

Because you are not a Nun or a monk.
  #86  
Old Sep 20, '11, 12:42 am
Hopemercy Hopemercy is offline
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Default Re: Secular third orders with full habits

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Originally Posted by EvelynEVF View Post
Br JR, you know more about the SFO than half the SFOs I've met

Personally, as an SFO myself, I'm quite content to have the Tau as my habit rather than something larger. I am not a Poor Clare wannabe, nor a friar-ette. I am a Secular, and I wear my secular clothes appropriate to my secular life, with an obvious Tau on my person somewhere. Always my ring, but also often a pendant (the ubiquitous wooden one, or a gold one with the crossed arms on it) and sometimes a beautiful San Damiano crucifix, which isn't the habit but is distinctively Franciscan. My wooden Tau has teeth marks on it from a toddler I babysit

Of course if anything else is ever mandated, I will wear it cheerfully.

I just wanted to point out that some of us are faithful to our vocations and to the magisterium, and don't feel like we need a "full" habit to live effectively.
Thank you for this.
  #87  
Old Sep 25, '11, 1:20 pm
janessa1850 janessa1850 is offline
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Smile Re: Secular third orders with full habits

I just wanted to put in my 2 cents. I am on retreat at a very contemporary Benedictine monastery. This am at their Mass in their lovely, modern chapel, I noticed that one could not tell the members of the general public from the Sisters. Some wore a small St. Benedict medal, but otherwise, they completely blended in with the visitors. I read a quote somewhere but don't remember who said it: "When religious orders blend in, they disappear."

These benedictines have no younger persons joining their ranks. I was told that last year, they had 3 persons doing a live-in program with them. All 3 are now gone. I met two persons currently in the live-in program and they were undecided.

My point is that I know from being a Catholic who no longer sees nuns, that the general public--especially Catholics--want to see nuns. They want visible evidence that God is among us. These are very frightening times for people. Seeing the witness of religious in their habits------priests too----gives hope to people and makes them feel more secure. For every person who might be "turned off", as they say, by a habit, I feel there is someone else who is drawn by the habit. Sometimes I feel it is a betrayal of who a religious person really is and what they stand for, to remove their habit and pretend "I'm just aregular person." One who gives their life as an oblation to the Lord is not simply a "regular person" at all, in my estimation. Not that they are better either. But we should be able to recognize our dear persons who have given up secular life and taken a vocation with God so we can show them respect, pray for them, ask their counsel, ask them for prayers, etc. After all, that is what they signed up for! And despite any suppressions or canon law to the contrary, I believe third-secular-oblate-or whatever should be permitted if they desire, to wear a habit of their order of any type which was worn in their history. Catherine of Sienna, save your tunic for me!
  #88  
Old Sep 25, '11, 3:57 pm
TiggerS TiggerS is offline
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Default Re: Secular third orders with full habits

What is identified as a religious habit is for those consecrated to the religious life; however, there is nothing to prevent a secular person from wearing standard clothing of particular design and color that does not resemble a religious habit.
  #89  
Old Sep 26, '11, 10:03 am
janessa1850 janessa1850 is offline
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Default Re: Secular third orders with full habits

Can anyone tell me more about the Shoenstatt Sisters. I followed the link someone here gave, but I found very little info and some was in German.


Please pray for the Restoration of the Soul of America and the Whole World.
  #90  
Old Sep 26, '11, 10:14 am
janessa1850 janessa1850 is offline
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Default Re: Secular third orders with full habits

I agree with Diaconia. The value of Christian Witness cannot be over emphasized in these times. Atheists are making concerted efforts through advertising to undermine God and try to humiliate the idea of being a believing person of faith. The radical and militant side of Islam has, as its overriding goal, to conquer all other faiths, and they especially hate the West; America is particular. There are forces we don't even see that are seeking the fall of Christianity. In the face of all that is happening, many maintain that we should shut up, sit down, and be good little quiet, apathetic children because a church says we cannot make any visible witness of our consecration to Christ if we are considered a "lay" person?

Jesus came to get rid of Law. Law is a thing to be used on barbarians and criminals. Jesus replaced the law with love. We are now living under love. Those not living under love may be caught by law, but for those real, committed Discipples of Jesus, Law cannot apply. They are bound by the Spirit of Love.




Please pray for the Restoration of the Soul of America and the Whole World
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