"People think St Francis was about the bees and butterflies, and charming birds and taming wolves; but that’s the smallest part of the story. He was a monumental figure in his humility and littleness. He has so much to tell us in this modern age…
The Third Order has grown and is very autonomous now. It used to be very much run by the First Order, but as that has shrunk, as most religious communities have, it has had to sort itself out and run its own affairs.
It has tended to become full of older people, and is starting to get top-heavy; so we’re trying to address that. As it grows and gets more organised, there’s always the trap of falling into an “organisation” spirit — as against the Holy Spirit — but people in the Third Order are far too individual for that to happen. I don’t think we’ll lose the sense of joy, foolishness, and daring that Franciscans have always had a reputation for. "
- from Church Times Interview: with Paul Alexander, Franciscan tertiary and actor
(for the full interview go here - online edition subscribers only)