On Saturday, October 15, 2022, ten candidates began their postulancy, that is, their first year of formation. There were four candidates from the Province of the Immaculate Mother of God in Poland (Warsaw); three from the Province of St. Anthony and Bl. James of Strepar in Poland (Cracow); two from the Province of St. Maximilian M. Kolbe in Poland (Gdańsk); and one from the Provincial Custody of the Immaculate Conception of the B.V.M. in Slovakia. The ceremony took place in Gniezno, Poland.
During the ceremony, the candidates received a tau cross and a copy of the writings of St. Francis and St. Clare. After Mass, they received rosaries containing relics of the Conventual Franciscan missionary martyrs of Peru, Blessed Zbigniew STRZAŁKOWSKI and Michał TOMASZEK.
The three Ministers Provincial: Friar Grzegorz BARTOSIK (Warsaw), Friar Marian GOŁĄB (Cracow) and Friar Wojciech KULIG (Gdańsk) thanked God for their vocation and assured the new postulants that they would offer intentions on their behalf during the Mass. Earlier, they had prayed for the postulants at the tombs of St. Adalbert and Blessed Iolanda, entrusting them to the protection of the Blessed Virgin Mary of Consolation – Our Lady of Gniezno.
During his homily, Friar Marian recalled the words of St. Paul’s Letter to the Ephesians: “that the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of glory, may give you a spirit of wisdom and revelation resulting in knowledge of him” (Eph 1:17), adding that this is a formation program for them.
At the same time, he asked the candidates to follow the way of St. Francis, who “was always with Jesus: Jesus in his heart, Jesus in his mouth, Jesus in his ears, Jesus in his eyes, Jesus in his hands, he bore Jesus always in his whole body” (1 Cel 115; FF 522).
He concluded his homily with the exhortation of the Poverello of Assisi, as quoted in the Second Life of St. Francis: “Pleasure is short and punishment is eternal; suffering is slight and glory infinite. Many are called; few are chosen, all are repaid” (2 Cel 191; FF 778). Brothers, while we have time, let us do good (cf. Gal 6:10).
After Mass, the friars talked about their vocation journey: how it happened that they came to the Conventual Franciscan Order. So did their Major Superiors and formators.
Friar Jan Maria SZEWEK