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risc 01risc 02Sr. Barbara TorregrossaDuring the apostolic visit of Sr. Tiziana Merletti to the communities of Pistoia and Assisi, the Sisters had the opportunity to reflect and exchange ideas on the theme of Franciscan Discernment.
It was an opportunity to let the Spirit help them grasp anew the discernment style of St. Francis and Mother Frances.

Here are some of their responses:

I really feel that discernment is part of our daily life. At the light of Mother Frances words “Inflame my Christ in me!” I can say that, at this time of my life, the most important thing is to center everything I have and I am in God. Only within His Will do I find the answer to the efforts and doubts that repeatedly emerge in my journey. Yet I also find so many validations that show me that God himself is the only Good. I believe self-knowledge helps us to not underestimate our interior world and, sharing it with our brothers and sisters in communion with God is the only path toward love and toward the ability to protect life in its wholeness. 

- Sr. Barbara Torregrossa, SFP

risc 03Sr. Viera FarinelliI am so happy I came to Assisi, the place where St. Francis lived true discernment. I thought about all the times he sought solitude and prayer, asking the Most Holy Trinity for enlightenment for himself and the group of friars following him. This made me think about Mother Frances and her relationship with Gertrude; about the time she went to Liege to find through prayer  the guidelines for her nascent community, and about all the moments of loneliness, suffering and lack of clarity that she experienced to move God’s work forward. Before that Assisi meeting I thought that decisions were always the job of the Congregational Leadership. The meeting, however, made me feel renewed; I grasped the importance of discerning decisions that affect the common good, and felt the beauty of being together. The words of Mother Frances - “Inflame my Christ in me!” – spurred in me a deeper sense of commitment and the sense of responsibility to welcome, through careful discernment, all the Gifts of the Holy Spirit.

- Sr. Viera Farinelli, SFP

risc 04Sr. Tina VentimigliaI am moved by how the entire life of St. Francis took place in God’s presence and in search of His will. This brought light and abundant fruit to his life and his actions, lasting over time.
St. Francis has a simple way of placing himself before God, “unaware” of how this way of being would have continued to inspire people throughout the centuries, becoming part of the “history” of salvation. On the contrary, my experience today is that of living “unaware” that we too have begun this journey through Francis, and that it is not enough to imitate il Poverello (the Little Poor Man), but rather we have to accompany him in this experience and move forward with him. From this comes the responsibility of our living and our choosing, which should not be directed at achieving results, but rather be focused on the very fact that our living and choosing are the ways in which God carries out His Work. It is God who carries out his Work; it my job and our job to let Him do just that. Franciscan Discernment offers us a way that is higher and simultaneously open to closeness; this  leads to Unity, blossoming in variety, savoring the Absolute, and energizing through dynamism.

- Sr. Tina Ventimiglia, SFP

Published: October 14, 2013