A Humble Servant

A Humble Servant


St. Francis of Assisi was a humble servant. We have in him a great example of a modest, and cheerful servant, always thinking of the other person first. There are a few people like that I’ve met over time but not many. Most were Franciscans or other religious. They were not limited to the Catholic faith, that is, those who were members of the laity. But in all there were few. One wonders why that is? I think it is because humility and servitude are so counter-cultural in today’s world. Even though I’ve been a Franciscan for more than 25 years, I still have much to learn about humility. It doesn’t come naturally, but I think it is necessary in order to get to Heaven.


In the first half of 2019 I was seriously ill. That’s when one begins to reflect on one’s obligations to God, the Faith, and the Church. Have I done enough? Could or should I do more? As a Fraternity Minister I should be an example of a “Humble Servant,” but I should pay more attention to that goal. I seem to “fly off the handle” a lot more than I should. Where does this behavior come from? Undoubtedly from watching too many hours of television. We pick up bad language easily, especially since I spent time in the Army. In fact my Army time began right after time in a religious order. Not an easy transition. From one culture into another, like downhill…


The past 25 years my life has been relatively peaceful, and I’ve made efforts to be humbler, but my conscience tells me not humble enough. There is always room for improvement and St. Francis had wise advice: “Let us begin, brothers* to serve the Lord God, for up to now we have done little or nothing.” We should listen to him. He knew what he was talking about.


Fred Schaeffer, OFS
September 22, 2019


(*) St. Francis would have said "brothers and sisters" except that in the early days of the Order, there were only brothers.




A Gift of a New Life
A Biography
by Fred Schaeffer, OFS 2019

Secular Franciscan Order
Ordo Franciscanus Sæcularis

Divine Mercy Fraternity

Vero Beach, FL


Term expires: 2/10/2022

Fred Schaeffer, OFS

Helen Caldarone, OFS

Mary "Jean" McGovern, OFS

 Jack Reddy, OFS


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Donna Haro, OFS



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Fred Schaeffer, OFS

Five Franciscan Martyrs

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