In Red Hat, Brown Radical over at Whispers in the Loggia we read about cardinal-archbishop Sean O’Malley. It is a wonderful read. Two points I would like to pluck for you:
Though canonically released from his vow of poverty on his appointment to the episcopacy in 1984, the Friar-prelate has gone to considerable lengths to maintain the simple state of life.
As bishop of Fall River, for example, O’Malley once got a group of priests excited by inviting them to dinner at his “new favorite restaurant,” the clerics only discovering when they pulled into the parking lot that their bishop’s choice was a Pizza Hut. Then, in Boston, he sold the Italianate palace occupied by a century’s worth of his predecessors to help fund the archdiocese’s abuse settlement, taking up residence in a spare room at the rectory of Holy Cross Cathedral.
and his own comments:
Some people are advocating removing some of the concrete directives on prayer that are in the Constitutions and place them in the Ordinances. This would be a fatal mistake. The ordinances are unknown and irrelevant to most of the friars. The Rule and Constitutions will always be the documents that form us and teach us our identity. The Constitutions cannot be a weak exhortation to live a vague ideal of the most common denominator. Rather, the Constitutions should be a challenging document that incorporates concrete directives about the life of prayer, poverty, and austerity. We need more boldness in our Constitutions if we are going to inspire young men to join our ranks.
It is boldness not ease that is drawing young people into religious life and inspiring young families to lead a more “Roman” Catholic life.