BOSTON — The friar community of St. Anthony Shrine here recently commemorated the Order’s 800th anniversary with two events.
On Sept. 9, the friars gathered for a preprandium and dinner to begin friary celebrations for the 800th anniversary. In honor of this historic milestone, the friars of St. Anthony Shrine and Ministry Center have collected a selection of essays published in the monthly series titled Canticle.
These essays provide insight into several themes close to the heart of St. Francis and the broader Franciscan tradition. Emeric Meier, OFM, writes the lead article each month, while Philip O’Shea, OFM, offers an informative response.
In honor of this special year, the essays and responses were collected and published in Canticle: 800th Anniversary Edition. A special cake and book signing celebrated this publication and honored the authors. Details will follow on the purchase of this book, said John Maganzini, OFM, vicar.
The following evening the friars, members of the shrine’s Guardians’ Council, and directors of the various ministries, gathered on the fifth floor of the friary to bless a new statue called “Francis Receives The Stigmata.” Sculptor Robert Shure of Woburn, Mass., was commissioned to design the statue in honor of the anniversary year.
At 5:30 p.m., attendees gathered in the hallway for an evening prayer prepared by John. David Convertino, OFM, welcomed everyone and described four items that would be placed in the fifth floor hallway to honor the 800th anniversary of the Order: the statue, a picture of Francis receiving the Rule, and a commemorative copy of the Rule.
Paul related that story of Francis before the Sultan. During the evening prayer, David and Richard Flaherty, OFM, unveiled the statue, and Myron McCormick, OFM, was invited to bless it. Guests were invited into the friars’ recreation room to continue the celebration with a festive preprandium, dinner, and dessert, prepared by the shrine’s kitchen staff, John said.