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Five Things you should know about St. Bonaventure

15 July:  The Franciscan Order has a number of Great Saints! Some of them are – ST. FRANCIS OF ASSISI HIMSELF, ST. CLARE, ST. ANTHONY and so on. And in the same line we have ST. BONAVENTURE. Though not as well-known as other Franciscan saints, his life and works continue to inspire the wider Franciscan family and the church of all times.

Here are Five Things You Should Know About St. Bonaventure?

Who is St. Bonaventure?

St. Bonaventure was born at BAG-NORE-GIO, IN ITALY, IN 1221. He joined the Franciscan order at the age of 22. He completed his studies in Paris under the celebrated doctor Alexander of Hales, an Englishman and a Franciscan.  He was A GOOD FRIEND OF ST. THOMAS AQUINAS.

At the age of thirty-five, St. Bonaventure was chosen the MINISTER GENERAL OF THE ORDER and served so for 17 years. Later Pope Gregory the X appointed him as cardinal and bishop of Albano. But a year later when he was attending the Second Council of Lyons, suddenly BREATHED HIS LAST ON JULY 15, 1274. Later he was canonized as saint and doctor of the church.  

St. Bonaventure, FRIAR, PRIEST, SCHOLAR, THEOLOGIAN, MINISTER GENERAL, CARDINAL BISHOP, SAINT, AND SERAPHIC DOCTOR.( Each title can pop up) Above all, he was FRIAR MINOR who lived life centred on Christ, in the footsteps of his seraphic father St. Francis.

What does the Name “Bonaventure’’ Mean?

Bonaventure means “O GOOD FORTUNE.”  There was a legend which says, when St. Bonaventure was 7 years old. He was severely ill. His mother brought him to St. Francis to pray over him. St. Francis foreseeing the future greatness of the little child, cried out in loud voice "O BUONA VENTURA" in Italian. Which means - “O GOOD FORTUNE” Later when he joined the friars, he took the name- Bonaventure. He is really a good fortune and an asset to the order and the church at large.

What did St. Bonaventure do?

Bonaventure was one of the greatest philosophers of the Middle Ages.
He left behind him an immense spiritual heritage: philosophical, theological, exegetical and mystical writings as well as writings that relate to the Franciscan order. Most famous of which are THE SOUL'S JOURNEY TO GOD (Itinerarium mentis in Deum), an outline of his theology (Breviloquium), SOLILOQUY ON THE FOUR SPIRITUAL EXERCISES (Soliloquium de quatuor mentalibus exercitiis), THE TREE OF LIFE (Lignum vitae), and THE TRIPLE WAY (De Triplici via). THE MAJOR AND MINOR LIFE OF ST. FRANCIS.

 

What does St. Bonaventure mean by ‘In Sanctitate et Doctrina”?

 IN SANCTITATE ET DOCTRINA MEANS – HOLINESS THROUGH LEARNING! According to him, acquiring knowledge is a process which should enable us to love God. He turned his LEARNING INTO A FORM OF PRAYER which increased his love for God. Acquiring knowledge and love for God go hand in hand and two sides of a same coin. The more we become learned/knowledgeable the more we should grow in love for God = it's holiness.

KNOWLEDGE + LOVE OF GOD = HOLINESS.

How does St. Bonaventure inspire us today?

According to St. Bonaventure, becoming a Gospel Disciple means becoming gentle and humble of heart. This is in a nut shell what core of the Gospel is and what Franciscan Spirituality is. He says in one of his sermons, “OF COURSE, NOT EVERYBODY CAN BE A FRIAR MINOR BY HABIT AND PROFESSION; BUT ALL WHO WISH TO BE SAVED, SHOULD BE FRIARS MINOR BY DISPOSITION, THAT IS, BE HUMBLE AND GENTLE.” This applies to all Christian disciples.

Happy Feast of St. Bonaventure….

Dear Brothers and Sister, as we celebrate the feast of St. Bonaventure lets pray through the intercession of St. Bonaventure, as we become learned we may also grow in the love of God and become gentile and humble brothers and sisters to our fellow human beings and to the entire creation. LET US BE “BOUNA VENTURAS” / “GOOD FORTUNES/ ASSETS” TO OUR CHURCH AND SOCIETY.

Br. Rajasekhar Gopu OFM

 

 

ST. FRANCIS OF ASSISI

ST. FRANCIS OF ASSISI

ST. FRANCIS

ST. FRANCIS

FRIARS' BIRTHDAY (August)

Date

Name of the Friars

Events

Year

01

Richard D’ Silva

Balaswamy Gundiga

Entry

Birth

1952

1978

02

Portiuncula

Feast


03

Julius Arul Rayan

Birth

1974

04

+ Bernard Henrietta

Praveen Roshan Toppo

Ravi Bara

Home

Birth

Birth

1981

1982

1995

06

Benedict Gomes

Augustine Tirkey

Birth

Birth

1977

1989

08

+ Marianus Kadasani

T.S.Leo Max

Home

Birth

2004

1995

11

+ Clare of Assisi

+ Sanctes Molenkamp

Feast

Home


1990

14

Jesu Maharaja

Pasala Showri Raju

Birth

Birth

1975

1987

15

Arok Sundar Sebastian

Charles Bernard

Felix Gassam

Francis Kaviyil

Chinnappan M. Devaraj

Amaldas Belevendran

Bobby V.T.

Birth

Solemn Vows

Solemn Vows

Solemn Vows

Solemn Vows

Solemn Vows

Ordination

1951

1990

1990

1992

1992

1992

2000

18

Jamesmon P.C.

Ordination

2001

19

John Chrysostom

Ordination

1995

21

Vijay Amirtharaj A.

Birth

1979

22

Bhaskar Reddy

Birth

1973

23

Stephen Arun S.

Birth

1994

25

King Louis IX

Arun Devasia Nattalil

Akshay Showry Raj

Feast

Birth

Birth


1991

1994

27

Joseph Kishan

Birth

1995

28

Fidelis D’ Lima

Birth

1939

30

Arockia Raj R.

Birth

1959

31

+ Christopher Coelho

Home

2007