Franciscans Prepare for 800th Anniversary

Chapter Reflects Vocation of Order

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ASSISI, Italy, OCT. 1, 2006 (Zenit.org).- Some 150 Franciscan friars concluded an extraordinary general chapter that will serve to prepare the order for the celebration of its 800th anniversary in 2009.



In the letter convoking the chapter in Assisi, the minister general of the Order of Friars Minor, Father José Rodriguez Carballo, said that the participants reflected on the document "The Order's Vocation Today."

The document was written in response to the Second Vatican Council's invitation to "return to the sources," said Father Rodriguez.

Those who attended the meeting, which ended today, also prepared "a path of discernment and renewal of the order," said the letter.

"It is a spiritual chapter," continued the general minister, "a celebration intended to be a living memorial of the path followed by the Friars Minor in the course of the centuries."

Among the friars in attendance were the three most recent ministers general: Father John Vaughn, Father Hermann Schaluck and Father Giacomo Bini.

At present, the Order of Friars Minor has more than 2,400 friaries in 107 nations throughout the world.

For links to the texts of the meeting see: www.ofm.org