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Daily Catholic Question

What is the meaning of initials behind the names of some Franciscans?

I have noticed that some Franciscan priests have T.O.R. after their family name. What does that mean?

It means Third Order Regular. St. Francis of Assisi founded the Order of Friars Minor, helped St. Clare establish the Poor Clares (Second Order) and then set up the Third Order, open to men and women, married or single.

Eventually, the Third Order became two different groups: Secular Franciscan Order (men and women as described above) and the Third Order Regular movement (men’s or women’s religious communities, professing the vows of poverty, chastity and obedience).

The Third Order Regular movement represented a new form of religious life, allowing women especially to engage in these “active” apostolates. There are approximately 12,000 Franciscan sisters within 83 U.S. congregations.

These sisters often use O.S.F. (Order of St. Francis) to avoid confusion with the international men’s group.

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Tuesday, October 9, 2012
Daily Catholic Question for 10/8/2012 Daily Catholic Question for 10/10/2012


Scholastica: Twins often share the same interests and ideas with an equal intensity. Therefore, it is no surprise that Scholastica and her twin brother, Benedict (July 11), established religious communities within a few miles from each other. 
<p>Born in 480 of wealthy parents, Scholastica and Benedict were brought up together until he left central Italy for Rome to continue his studies. </p><p>Little is known of Scholastica’s early life. She founded a religious community for women near Monte Cassino at Plombariola, five miles from where her brother governed a monastery. </p><p>The twins visited each other once a year in a farmhouse because Scholastica was not permitted inside the monastery. They spent these times discussing spiritual matters. </p><p>According to the <i>Dialogues of St. Gregory the Great</i>, the brother and sister spent their last day together in prayer and conversation. Scholastica sensed her death was close at hand and she begged Benedict to stay with her until the next day. </p><p>He refused her request because he did not want to spend a night outside the monastery, thus breaking his own Rule. Scholastica asked God to let her brother remain and a severe thunderstorm broke out, preventing Benedict and his monks from returning to the abbey. </p><p>Benedict cried out, “God forgive you, Sister. What have you done?” Scholastica replied, “I asked a favor of you and you refused. I asked it of God and he granted it.” </p><p>Brother and sister parted the next morning after their long discussion. Three days later, Benedict was praying in his monastery and saw the soul of his sister rising heavenward in the form of a white dove. Benedict then announced the death of his sister to the monks and later buried her in the tomb he had prepared for himself.</p> American Catholic Blog In all the sacraments, Christ gives to us the transforming power of his love, which we call “grace.” But in the Eucharist, and only in the Eucharist, Jesus gives us even more. He gives us his entire self—Body and Blood, Soul and Divinity. Of course, the proper response to a gift of this magnitude is gratitude.

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