Voice of Young Friars


Six friars belonging to this category gathered for three days as a time of recollection, recreation and reflection. Besides sharing our views on the topics raised, we also read and discuss the Report of the General Minister for the Extra-Ordinary Chapter.



1. Young Friars in our Province:
Six under 10 years of profession. They are now working as:
Provincial Secretary, Novice Director, Person-in-charge for provincial cemetery, Pastors, Student undergoing advanced studies

2. Number of friars of the under 10 generation have left:
One belonging to the current generation. Altogether three within the past two decades.

4. Examples of being supported by the fraternity in our vocation:

Some of us are given opportunity to do further studies. Some of us (who are not clerical) do not feel the pressure to be ordained. Some of us are entrusted with responsibilities and are given corresponding financial resources to carry out the ministry. A diversity of service experience is given. Individual friars in the fraternity show support and care by taking initiatives to talk to some of us.

Examples of not being supported by the fraternity in our vocation:

Friars in the community blame us for being too busy. Some of us are not permitted or encouraged to take on ministry outside the fraternity. SOme of us are not given appropriate resources to carry out ministry. One guardian does not grant holiday leave according to the particular statutes. Some of us do not feel being cared, understood, listened to or appreciated.

 

5. We feel our province responds in its life and mission to the expectations of humankind in the following way:

 

- Considering living out fraternity and minority as a way to respond to the expectations of humankind, friars in our province are often characterized very much by these two values - in terms of being humble, not being "bossy" or loud, being friendly and approachable, especially while dealing with parishioners and students, i.e. clients in our ministry. However, in terms of fraternity "ad intra," many friars are still not able to live out fraternity with other friars. Ministry is usually carried by individual friars, rather than as a team or as a community. Friars in our province do not live out minority in social terms. Our pastoral ministry makes us "leaders" of faith communities, rather than servants for the faithful.

- Considering filling the earth with Gospel as a way to respond to the expectations of humankind, friars in our province are not without creativity in our missionary evangelization. However, again, most of our work is without much comprehensive and thorough strategic planning. We have become rather passive – only trying to continue what has begun in the past. Most of the work is still very individualistic.

 

7. Based on our reflections outlined above, here are some suggestions for improvement of our fraternity, province and the order:

•  We believe it is very important that we as a community learn how to read the signs of time and signs of place.

•  We hope there can be a missionary evangelization strategy that can evaluate our current ministry and plan for the future, which includes both the baptized and non-baptized as our clients, particularly those who are marginalized or alienated from the Church.

•  We hope there will be opportunities for friars to get together for communication on all levels: what we do, what we think, what we hope and how we feel. Such gathering can occur at many levels and should be encouraged, even if they are spontaneous.

•  At the provincial level, our experience for such “Under 10” gatherings are quite positive, we think there can be other generational meetings for “10-20”, “20-30” etc. Such generational meetings can be a catalyst and we suggest maybe one per season.

•  At the fraternity level, there can be weekly or biweekly extra-chapter meetings (maybe one hour long) for the sharing of faith and life.

•  We recognize that some of our major problems occur as problems in inter-personal relationships. We see that formation at the human level may not have been very thorough in the past, so we think human development and psychological maturity could be emphasized even at on-going formation. For examples, listening skills and interpersonal communication skills can be learnt and re-learnt.

(Response to the questions raised for "Friars under 10" from Our Lady Queen of China Province)

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This page is updated on 2007-12-18 更新

本網頁由方濟會(小兄弟會)中華之后會省及孟高維諾會區贊助。www.ofm.org.tw and www.ofm.org.hk