We begin the new year as Franciscans together with the Extractions of Saints, the annual ritual celebrated by all three branches of the Order.
The Franciscan custom of extracting patrons and a scriptural passage, on or near the Feast of the Epiphany reflects a reverence for the saints and the understanding of the need for continuing promotion of personal holiness. During the extraction ceremony, participants choose a unique name of a saint to be considered a prayerful patron in addition to a short personal scripture verse to be considered a focal point for spiritual concentrated development. This is a communal ceremony and can include not only those members of an individual friary, convent or fraternity, but those in an area, those serving in the same ministry site or those sharing the same Franciscan charism. The “picking” of the names and passages are accompanied by time for fellowship. This is a time of great celebration during the Christmas season and an event which we all look forward to each year!