We embrace the vision to respect all human life. We work to protect the lives of people no matter who they are or how bad they may be. It is the way of our Franciscan love. True christian love cannot be choosey. It is universal as We try to imitate the God who loves all people. For the same reason, we work to create conditions of life worthy of people redeemed by Christ (SFO Rule #13). All life is precious and we will live by that belief. We know how impossible this can be without the power of the Holy Spirit. Hence We are a prayerful people.
Our Franciscanism is not just a private affair nor merely a personal road to sanctity. It is more then one’s belonging to an organization that assures spiritual benefits in an easily obtainable way.
Rather, our Franciscan way of life is a precious gift and an involving mission. By committing ourselves to the gospel of Jesus through observing the SFO rule of life, we become a living sacrifice of praise and thanks, and a vibrant witness of the Good News for all to see and hear.
Thus we find the SFO Rule (Rule of the Secular Franciscan Order, 1978) is not as specific or as secure as the former rules, but perhaps in the long run it is more demanding. It calls for an intense and personal relationship with God and a mature decision to be responsible for one’s own actions. It suggests a creative mind to seek out new and better ways of acting and an open-ended stance that says, “Just doing this or that isn’t enough for fulfilling the demands of gospel life, my potential is limitless!”
~ Benet A. Fonck, OFM, Called to Proclaim Christ
Forming Secular Franciscans to understand the secular spirituality that was an essential element in the development of the SFO Rule must be where we begin. We need to be converted to the vision of the Church which has been telling us that we will grow in holiness by participating in that discordant, untidy, unpredictable place we call the “world.” That it is a primary school for holiness.
~Edward M. Zablocki, SFO, Finding Identity as a Secular Franciscan
Secular Franciscans develop love in full measure so that it becomes their natural reaction to life and people and problems and celebrations. The SFO Rule is clear on this when it states: … In these fraternities the brothers and sisters, led by the Spirit, strive for perfect charity in their own secular state (SFO Rule – #2).
~ Lester Bach, OFM Cap, The Franciscan Journey: Embracing the Franciscan Vision