Introduction to the “Exercises of Religion”
In keeping with the purpose of the Third Order of St. Francis “to form its members in Christian perfection” (ref Sacra Propediem 16), our Constitution, Section II, lists a series of “exercises” to assist in achieving this goal, glorifying God “in union with Christ and His Church by active participation in the sacred functions”. (Constitution Article 54)
Some of these exercises are required for all the faithful as they are precepts of the Church. “The precepts of the Church are set in the context of a moral life bound to and nourished by liturgical life. The obligatory character of these positive laws decreed by the pastoral authorities is meant to guarantee to the faithful the indispensable minimum in the spirit of prayer and moral effort, in the growth in love of God and neighbor” CCC, n. 2041. Some of these precepts include keeping Sundays holy and the holy days of obligation. Other exercises are recommendations to help us in our quest to love our Lord with our whole heart, soul and strength and to love our neighbor as ourselves.
To learn more about some of the Exercises of Religion we invite you to click on the following pages in this section.
“There is nothing selfish in seeking high perfection, as it gives such glory to God. “In this is My Father glorified that you bear much fruit,” so “Be ye perfect, as also your heavenly Father is perfect.” Jesus did not die merely to save us, but above all to sanctify His Church. Our sanctification is the triumph of His precious Blood- a glory for all eternity.” Blessed Columba Marmion