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'So that they might have life.' The Later Rule of Saint Francis

Foto Carbajo-N˙˝ez MartÝn , 'So that they might have life.' The Later Rule of Saint Francis, in Carthaginensia, 40/77 (2024) p. 25-50 .

Abstract: This article is intended as a contribution to the celebration of the eighth centenary of the Later Rule of St. Francis (Nov. 29, 1223) and analyzes its inspirational force in our secularized society. This is one of the four great Rules of consecrated life. It is not only a juridical text, but also a spiritual document, a guide “to live according to the pattern of the Holy Gospel” (part 1). Those in authority must be at the service of this vital process, acting as mothers who take care of life (part 2). The third part presents the Rule’s current relevance and the need of an inspiring leadership that promotes processes of transformation to address the present challenges of religious life.
Key words: Francis of Assisi, Franciscans, Later Rule, Religious Life, Leadership.
Sommario: Questo articolo si riferisce alla celebrazione dell'ottavo centenario della Regola di San Francesco (29.11.1223), che è una delle quattro grandi Regole della vita religiosa, e ne analizza la forza ispiratrice nell'odierna società secolarizzata. Si tratta non tanto di un testo giuridico, quanto e soprattutto di un documento spirituale, una guida “per vivere secondo la forma del santo Vangelo” (Parte 1). I “ministri e servi” devono favorire questo processo vitale che la Regola propone, agendo come madri che si prendono cura della vita (Parte 2). La terza parte presenta l'importanza odierna della Regola e il bisogno di una leadership ispiratrice che promuova processi di trasformazione per affrontare le sfide poste oggi alla vita religiosa.
Parole chiave: Regola bollata, Francesco d'Assisi, Francescani, Vita religiosa, Leadership.
Sumario: Este artículo responde a la celebración del octavo centenario de la Regla bulada de San Francisco (29.11.1223), que es una de las cuatro grandes Reglas de la vida consagrada, y analiza su fuerza inspiradora en la actual sociedad secularizada. No es sólo un texto jurídico, sino también un documento espiritual, una guía “para vivir según la forma del santo evangelio” (1ª parte). Quienes detentan la autoridad tienen que estar al servicio de ese proceso vital que la Regla propone, actuando como madres que cuidan la vida (2ª parte). La tercera parte presenta su actualidad y la importancia de un liderazgo inspirador que promueva procesos de transformación para afrontar los desafíos de la vida consagrada.
Palabras clave: Francisco de Asís, Franciscanos, Regla bulada, Vida consagrada, Liderazgo


1. “The life of the lesser brothers begins”
1.1. The rule is life
1.2. “Those who wish to adopt this Life” (LR 2)
1.3. Let them “be received to obedience”
1.3.1 Obedience in the first person
1.3.2 To obey is to embrace fraternity and the logic of gift
2. Authority: mothers who care for life
2.1. Listening to the Holy Spirit, true Minister General
2.2. Reluctance of some ministers: The logic of power
3. Today we need the Rule
3.1. How should we live the Rule today?
3.2. Assuming the Rule as a vital process of transformation
3.3. Authority: Witnesses who inspire and animate
4. Summarizing.

Key words: Francis of Assisi, Franciscans, Later Rule, Religious Life, Leadership

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