The feast of the Holy Name of St. Francis of Assisi, the founder of the Franciscan community, and the feast of the Virgin Mary, who gave the church its name, was celebrated in the church in the Bornova district of Izmir on Monday, October 4, at 17.30, with a ceremony led by the Latin Catholic Archbishop of Izmir, Monsignor Martin Kmetec.
Father Pietro Mechelli, the High Priest of the Santa Maria Franciscan Church, the Chancellor of the Archdiocese of Izmir – Private Secretary – Father Alessandro Amprino and the Priest of Göztepe Notre-Dame de Lourdes Church Father Gabriel Ferone also accompanied the mass.
James Buxton, the Priest of the Anglican Church of Izmir, Father Pascal, the Franciscan Priest of the Bornova Church, Father Ugo, the Rector of the St. John’s Cathedral, and Dariusz Bialkowski, the High Priest of the Karşıyaka St. Helena Church, also attended the service.
Before the ceremony began, the newly created small chapel on the upper floor of the church was consecrated by Monsignor Kmetec.
After reading the words from the Book of Sirach (Ecclesiasticus) and St. Paul’s Letter to the Galatians, Father Gabriel read the words from chapter 11 of the Gospel of Matthew.
Then Monsignor Kmetec preached: … “The Church is the bearer of the Word of God and the guarantor of the true interpretation of its content. Therefore, when Francis is with the comrades and they do not know what to do, he goes to the Church of St. Damiano and opens the Gospel three times. The Bible opens on the mission of the apostles to evangelize. Here, the Franciscan Community was born in the context of the Church, in this analysis of the Word…
If Saint Francis had not been convinced that the Church was an extension of God’s incarnation on earth, Franciscanism would have been lost in the heresies of his time; The Church, which the Second Vatican Council referred to as the “mystery of salvation”, is the saving work of God.
Francis has an inclusive view of the Church. The Church is universal and should be a universal brotherhood. “The founding principle of the Church is not culture, language or race, but Christ Jesus.”
After the service, refreshments were given to all participants in the garden of the church. The African choir juiced up the feast. (SAT-7 TÜRK/İZMİR – Nathalie Ritzmann)