Who we are.
"We have been called to heal wounds, to unite what has fallen apart, and to bring home those who have lost their way." St. Francis of Assisi. Legend of the Three Companions
Companions of Jesus are Franciscans of the third millennium. Men and women who are called to walk in unity on the road of reconciliation. Prayerfully working within the whole household of God we seek to repair the divisions made by man to the Body of Christ.
The Companions of Jesus is a non-denominational Franciscan Order and is not a religious institute, arm or outreach of any one particular denomination, fellowship, community or church communion. The Order is ecumenical. (Being of one household-one family-one Church)
Companions of Jesus are active-contemplative free believers, who are committed to Christ and His Church. We are not a lay Order or a religious Order in the sense defined by the older Franciscan Communities within the institutional churches. We are not a first, second or third Order but a combination of all three. We are New Franciscans! We live consecrated lives that bear witness to the love of God and our calling. As Professed brothers and sisters who live consecrated lives we wear a traditional Franciscan habit. Most of the time you will see us wearing simple clothing with a Tau cross or crucifix that identifies us as Franciscans.
Associates of the Order hold to Franciscan Spirituality but are not Professed Sisters or Brothers. They desire to walk alongside us, daily upholding us in their prayers and helping practically wherever they can.
Our Rule is the Gospel.
There is no separation within the Order of clergy and laity. All are servants to the servants of God. All are brothers and sisters.
There is one body and one Spirit, just as you were called to one hope when you were called, one Lord, one faith, one baptism, one God and Father of all, who is over all through all and in all. (Eph 4.4-6)
A Companion is literally a friend with whom one breaks bread.
Companions of Jesus seek through love, ecumenical dialogue and fellowship to keep the unity of the Spirit, which is found in Jesus Christ alone, by and through the power of the Holy Spirit. Companions of Jesus seek in the simplicity of the gospel to be instruments and channels of God's love and peace.
My dear people, our love is not to be just words or mere talk, but something real and active....(1John.18)
A Companion of Jesus has no rule except the Gospel. (This was the original vision of Francis of Assisi and remains ours today).
There is no formal period of postulancy or novitiate with us, as we believe in the simplicity of the way. Jesus never asked his followers to take time out and study and search their hearts to see whether they should follow. Nor did Francis ask of the early brothers anything like a postulancy before joining him. We realise that those who join the Order can do so from mixed motives and some may fall away and others may cause offence. We look to our master Jesus who took into his fold a mixed group of individuals, including Judas Iscariot and did not stop them from following. So we too learn to walk in that vulnerable place.
Instead of the taking three vows of Poverty, Chastity and Obedience, the Companions of Jesus seek to live out three precepts taken from Micah 6.8: Justice, Love and Humility.
"And what does the Lord require of you? To act justly, to love with mercy and to walk humbly with your God".
The Companions of Jesus seek to live humble lives in a spirit of detachment from the world. They seek to live a life of poverty which reflects the evangelical calling of Christ, who is their master. ”The attitude you should have is the one that Christ Jesus had: He always had the nature of God, but he did not think that by force he should try to become equal with God. Instead of this, of his own free will he gave up all he had and took the nature of a servant. He became like man and appeared in human likeness. He was humble and walked the Path of obedience all the way to death - his death on the cross."(Philippians 2. 5 - 8)
Companions of Jesus believe with their seraphic father Francis that 'Every good is God's property' and with humility they seek to live a life that reflects this.
(The Servant Companions of Jesus were established on the Feast of St. Francis of Assisi on the 4th October 2004, in Bexhill-on-Sea, East Sussex, England. In 2009 they became known simply as the 'Companion's of Jesus').
"I no longer call you servants, because a servant does not know his master's business. Instead, I have called you friends, for everything that I learned from my Father I have made known to you". (Jn.15.15)