Dear Brothers and Sisters,

As we celebrate the Feast of our patron, Francis of Assisi – Happy Feast Day!

Congratulations to the young men and women of our parish who celebrated the Sacrament of Confirmation with Bishop Burbidge on Saturday morning, October 1.  May the fullness of the gifts of the Holy Spirit guide you as you continue to deepen your faith and grow in your relationship with our triune God.

This weekend brings together my “two families” – my Reamer family (including my mom and 7 siblings) and my Franciscan Family of Holy Name Province.  It is a joy for me to celebrate my silver jubilee as a Franciscan Friar with you my Raleigh St. Francis of Assisi Community.  Welcome to family, friends, and friars who visit!

Please join in celebrating the Spirit of Assisi this Tuesday, October 4 at 7:00 pm in our church.  In October 1986, Blessed John Paul II realized a great dream: he invited representatives of world religions to Assisi so that a single song of peace might be sent to the one God from many hearts and in many languages.  This invitation was accepted by 70 representatives of major religions.  They offered hope for a different world: renewed; profoundly fraternal; and truly human.  The event itself carried an important message: that the desire for peace is shared by all people of good will; but taking into account the situation of the world and the relationship between peoples, real peace can only be achieved through an intervention by God.  The meeting was one of prayer.  The prayer arose in the spiritual context of each of the religions that was present.  It invited the participants to touch their own interiority in freedom, carrying the prayer of all humanity and raising it up to God.  They recognized that human beings on their own are not able to achieve the peace that they are seeking.  On the 25th anniversary of this gathering Pope Benedict has invited leaders of the world’s religions to come together again in Assisi, Italy.  In this spirit Bishop Burbidge has invited the local leaders of the many diverse religious traditions represented in North Carolina to gather here in the Church of Francis of Assisi on Tuesday October 4, the Feast of Francis to pray for peace as pilgrims of peace and truth.  Please join with us as we pray for peace in our lives and in our world.

I’d like to express thanks and appreciation to our parishioner Jerry Sroka of J&L Landscaping for the wonderful work he and his crew has done in the fountain area between Elizabeth and Anthony Halls.  Jerry did this in conjunction with our preschoolers.  If you take a walk in that area you’ll see the plantings that were done by the different classes.  We are fortune to have beautiful grounds thanks to the many folks like Jerry who donate their time and talent.  And special thanks to our parishioner Gregg Mason of Mason Landscaping who oversees the entire property and takes a special pride in our campus.

 In the peace of Christ,

Fr. Mark