November 29th – Feast of the Saints of Our Order


2016: Taken by Our Lady of the Angels Province friar, Fr. Martin Breski, OFM Conv., as Franciscan Friars renew their vows of poverty, chastity and obedience, at The Basilica of Santa Maria degli Angeli (Assisi), home of the Portiuncula

November 29th is a special feast day for all Franciscans. On this day in 1223, the definitive Rule of Life of St. Francis of Assisi was approved by Pope Honorius III. St. Francis and his first companions presented themselves to Pope Innocent III in 1209, seeking oral approval of their evangelical form of life. At Santuario di Fonte Columbo, Francis drew up the final Rule that was approved by the Bull Solet Annuere, issued by Honorius III, November 29th. The original copy of the Rule is preserved in the Basilica Papale e del Sacro Convento di San Francesco (Papal Basilica of Saint Francis), the mother church of the Roman Catholic Order of Friars Minor Conventual, in Assisi. Permission was granted, allowing the Fraternity to expand to become the Friars Minor (Lesser Brothers). Following the Lateran Council IV, Pope Honorius III approved the definitive Rule and that Christmas, the Pope also consented that St. Francis re-enacted a living nativity at Greccio.

The Feast Day: To commemorate the November 29, 1223 approval of the Rule of Life, each year on that date, all of the saints of the Franciscan Order are remembered at Franciscan churches and communities around the world, as we celebrate the Feast of All of the Saints of the Order. Although St. Francis died in 1226, he left the great legacy of the Franciscan Order and its almost 800 years of saints, giving credit only to God’s Grace and following in the footsteps of St. Francis. Friars all over the world renew our vows, at our ministries or in our smaller friary community (symbolically, as our vows are perpetual/permanent).

Excerpt from a sample “Renewal of Vows” celebrated during Morning or Evening Prayer:

Let us pray that, with the help of God and the intercession of St. Francis,
all our Franciscan saints, and Mary, Queen of the Franciscan Order,
we may rekindle our initial fervor and recommit ourselves
to the ideals of the Franciscan way of life.

All praise be Yours, O Lord,
for all creation gives You glory.
All praise be Yours, O Lord,
for all good things come from You.
All praise be Yours, O Lord,
for You call us to the life of Your Risen Son.

Today, we Your sons, renew and re-dedicate ourselves to the call You have given us. We renew our profession of the Rule of our Father Francis, and we ask Your help to continue to live the life of the Gospel with obedience to Your Spirit and Your Church, with poverty that imitates the life of Your Son and His holy mother, and with chastity that frees us to love You and Your people, with unmeasured love. All praise be Yours, O Lord, now and forever. Amen.