Walking with Hope


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  • Joshua Van Cleef
    Joshua Van Cleef
    “This pilgrimage is about the abundance of life offered in simplicity, in relationships, and in trusting in God.”

  • Richard Goodin
    Richard Goodin
    "Pilgrimage as a lifestyle is resurfacing within the Order; it is a penitential and radical way of completely relying upon the grace of God."

  • Clifford Hennings
    Clifford Hennings
    "I desire to hold nothing within my breast other than the love which I have been blessed by the Lord to receive, so that I have nothing to give but Christ’s perfect charity."

  • Roger Lopez
    Roger Lopez
    “When all the basic necessities of life are stripped away, one begins to see oneself, others and God in a different perspective, either positive or negative.”

  • Ed Shea, OFM
    Ed Shea, OFM
    "As a friar for over 25 years, I have always dreamed about doing something like this. I thank God for these young friars and their passion – it’s contagious!"

  • Mark Soehner, OFM
    Mark Soehner, OFM
    “It seemed important [for me] as a formation director to accompany the deep desire of our younger friars to live out our charism in this way. For me personally, it will be a way to walk with Christ.”

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07/02/2009

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We shared dinner w/the Friars at the Sapinos' home in Charlottesville. Sapinos served a "feast for friars". While we broke bread together they shared many stories of the first 180 miles of their journey and "what inspired them" to become Friars (amazing stories). We surprised Fr. Mark w/our presence (we have know him for 20+ years). May the Lord bless and protect them on their walk with Christ.
Gwen and Don Juszczyk
Lebanon, Ohio

We were privileged to host the Friars for the nights of July 3rd through the morning of the 5th. They are a lively group, actively greeted and feted by our parish, the Church of the Incarnation, being invited out for lunch and dinner each day. Their visit was fun. We only wish that we had had more time to enjoy their company.

Our family has a Franciscan history. My wife, Bonny, grew up not far from the Monastery in Washington, D.C., and often attended Mass at the Poor Clares on Quincy Street.
My mother, Marie Schmitt Ely, contributed interpretive poems to Sacred Paintings on Skin, a book of Martha Ann Walker's silkscreen renditions of paintings by Franciscan missionaries (see link below). Since we live in Central Virginia, we have not visited with any Franciscan for decades. It was good to renew an old friendship.

What a great time we had with all of you at dinner on Sunday. You have given me much to think about this week. You shattered all my stereotypes and I am glad that you are receiving good 'ole Southern hospitality. Will keep you in my prayers. Therese

How delighted I was to have an opportunity to meet you all and introduce you to the Virginia Discovery Museum. Your delight in exploring our hands-on learning setting was evident, supplemented by your gentle natures, natural curiosity and knowledge about principles scientific and historical.
May you continue to have a safe journey.

Guys, this is awsome what you're doing. I wish I had someone to do such a thing with. Maybe after my novitiate some summer with some of my brothers.
Pray for me as I approach my simple vows with the caps. 11 days to go.
Peace and good,
Your Brother,

I have to be honest: When I saw these four Franciscans as I was walking out of Mass, I was blown away. To hear of these four guys walking across Virginia just with their backpacks, their rosaries, and with faith--it reminded me that people today still are yearning for sainthood, more than just the ordinary. It has been a very long time since I've been so touched by such a complete surrender to God. This is not a very common calling, but it is very real. And the Franciscans re-ignite the Fire of God's love in our hearts when we see yours searching for that of Christ.
My prayers will remain with you. And thank you, for I knew God was beside me when I was in your presence.

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