Secular Franciscan Order

Ordo Franciscanus Sæcularis

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Vaticano, February 4, 2016

Dear Mr. Tibor Kauser,

I want to thank you for your letter Protocol No. 2828 /14-20 of January 15, 2016, which included the summary report of the activities of the Secular Franciscan Order for 2015.
In particular, I appreciated your reflection about the need for transition from a life and a vocation dedicated to personal devotion to a concrete and renewed commitment to fraternal life and to the will to live and bear witness as seculars, in the Church and in the world.

*Note: the original is in Italian language

Precisely these feelings were present in the words which Pope Francis gave a few days ago to the the participants on the Jubilee on consecrated life, where he admirably explained the importance of Proximity (closeness): which means "to get close to and to understand the life of Christians and non-Christians, their suffering, their problems, the many things that you only understand if a consecrated man and woman become close: in closeness,” in particular recognizing "what is the first (level) of closeness of a consecrated man or woman? The brother or sister of the community. This is your first neighbor (first level of closeness).” (Francis, Meeting with the participants at the Jubilee on the Consecrated Life, February 1, 2016).

Here, therefore, is the ‘importance of fraternal life, that has in itself the power to witness in the Church and in the world what it means to live fully the vocation of baptized Christians!
True fraternity within the community, in fact, becomes open to the outside world and its mission to the human community, to the world, to the outskirts (the marginalized?) and fully realizes the call that God makes to us as a people, because "He chose to summon you as people and not as isolated beings. No one is saved alone, that is, not as an isolated individual by his own efforts.
God calls us keeping into account the complex web of relationships which involves living in a human community.” (Francis, Apostolic Exhortation Evangelii gaudium, 113)

Fraternity and community realize, through closeness, the fellowship of the people of God.
I want to emphasize one final aspect of your report.

I sincerely appreciate the attention given and the work that you do with and for young people in Franciscan Youth, present in so many countries around the world.

I hope that many of them will take part in the forthcoming World Youth Day, which will take place in Poland, in Krakow from July 26 to 31, 2016.

Franciscan Youth members will certainly be able to offer, through their witness, a significant contribution to the development of this important event engraved in the heart of the Year of Mercy that we are living and what participation in World Youth Day will mean for them, as for all the youth who will take part, an extraordinary opportunity to rediscover their baptismal call and their charism, in communion with the Church and with the Holy Father.

I gladly take this opportunity to send you cordial greetings in Christ.

Stanisław Card. RYŁKO


Esteemed Mister
Tibor Kauser
General Minister
Secular Franciscan Order
Via Vittorio Putti, 4/int. 6